Higher Diploma in Science in Data Analytics - ONLINE - [2 Years Part-time] [January 2019]

National College of Ireland (HDSDAJAN19OL)
Key Programme Details

Higher Diploma in Science in Data Analytics - Major Award from Quality Qualifications Ireland

NFQ Level

8 About NFQ

Delivery Method

Online, Distance


Part Time

ECTS Credits



School of Computing

Skills Area

Information and communication (including ICT)

General Information

The Springboard Team




1850 221 721


Springboard Office,
National College of Ireland,
Mayor Street,
Dublin 1


Springboard Projects Coordinator

Important Dates
Application Deadline


Start Date


End Date


About this Course


Overview of Eligibility and Fees:
For the two year part-time ICT Conversion courses if you are unemployed and in receipt of a jobseekers payment (including Farm Assist and Qualified Adults of Working Age) you are not eligible for the two year ICT Conversion courses.
Fees: A student contribution fee of €540 is applicable if you are in employment. No fees are applicable if you are unemployed. This amount must be paid in full no later than Friday 15th March 2019. If a student withdraws before the commencement of the course the full amount that they have paid is refundable. No refund will be processed once the student commences the course the week beginning 21st January 2019. Please see https://www.ncirl.ie/applicants for more detail. The scheme does not cover any allowance for books and materials.

Summary of Course:
The analysis and interpretation of data to address the problems of business and society is an area experiencing massive growth. Diverse areas such as insurance, retail, sports, finance, pharmaceutical and government are all looking for people with skills in analysing ‘big data’ to help them make more informed decisions.

The course will furnish students with skills to enter the world of data analytics through building a foundation of strong statistical knowledge, developing problem-solving skills for business analysis, and helping you understand and use business data to deliver better decision making. This higher diploma will give you technical skills in statistics, programming, database management and web mining in addition to business skills such as business analysis that will help you make an impact in a wide range of roles. Students undertaking this course will be exposed to a variety of programming languages/tools that may include ‘R’, Python, SPSS, Excel, Weka and RapidMiner.


As a graduate of this course you will be able to:
• Carry out effective data analysis utilising descriptive and inferential statistics.
• Solve problems supported by the choice and application of appropriate data analysis tools.
• Develop technical skills to process multiple datasets using relevant modelling, programming, data storage, and computational techniques.
• Communicate effectively the results of data analysis.
• Apply analytical thinking techniques, communication, and interaction skills to support decision making and address business requirements.

Entry Requirements

Applicants holding an honours degree (level 8 or equivalent) in any discipline will be considered. Applicants from a non-cognate discipline will be asked to sit an online assessment as part of the application process.

For candidates who do not have an honours degree level 8 qualification or equivalent, the college operates a Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning (RPEL) scheme - meaning applicants who do not meet the normal academic entry requirements, may be considered based on relevant work or other experience.

Technical Requirements:
Besides having a very strong WIFI connection, students of online courses at the National College of Ireland are required to have the following equipment in order to effectively participate in an online classroom:

• Laptop/Desktop
Students are expected to successfully participate in lectures, laboratories and projects using their own laptop computer with a substantial hardware configuration. A suitable configuration is 6GB of RAM (8GB or more is recommended); a 64-bit x86 processor (Intel i5 or superior); 250+ GB of hard disk; WiFi card; and a recent installed release of Mac OS or Windows operating system. It is your responsibility to ensure that your laptop is function correctly and that you have full administrator rights to the machine. NCI cannot provide support to personal devices.

• Microphone
Any microphone is acceptable, provided the audio is clear. Most laptops have an inbuilt microphone which is perfectly acceptable, however occasionally an external mic is necessary.
You may test your microphone’s compatibility with your browser here: https://www.onlinemictest.com/

• Headphones
Headphones are strongly recommended to avoid echo while using the microphone.

• External Webcam
External Webcams (USB cable) are required in order to authenticate yourself for examination purposes. Onboard webcams, ie webcams built into the laptop are not appropriate for examination authentication. Webcams are not required for day to day classes.

Long Description

Year 1 Semester 1
Introduction to Data Analytics
Business Data Analysis
Programming for Big Data
Career Bridge

Year 1 Semester 2
Business Analysis and Communication
Advanced Business Data Analysis
Career Bridge

Year 2 Semester 1
Data and Web Mining
Data Visualisation
Career Bridge

Year 2 Semester 2
Career Bridge

Relevant Employment/Placement can be undertaken within the course timeline or commenced within 3 months of course completion.

Why Choose This Course

The Career Bridge module is worked into each of the programme schedules. Assisting students develop and achieve their career goals is a core mission within the NCI Career Development & Employability Office (CDEO) who have won the AHECS “Excellence in Employability Award” for 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2018. These were awarded for the work undertaken with students completing skills conversion programmes. The Career Bridge module involves producing a career action plan and develops in students the ability to self-manage their careers, identify and apply for career opportunities, develop an online brand, network effectively and promote themselves at interview.

Career Opportunities

2017 graduates used the course to upskill or gain employment in roles such as Data Architect, Retail Data Analyst, Data Analyst, Product Manager, Data Scientist, Billing Support Analyst, Marketing BI Specialist, Database Programmer. 82% of employed students changed role or company as a result of doing the course. Of the 14% of students who were unemployed, 73% secured employment within 3 months of completing the course. Companies who hired NCI 2017 graduates included KBC (Resource Planning Analyst), Citrix (Marketing BI Specialist), Analytic Partners (Associate Marketing Science Analyst), AIG Asset Management (Data Analyst), Aer Lingus (Retail Data Analyst), Version 1 (Associate Consultant), ESRI (Database Programmer).

Timetable Info

Duration: 2 years, 4 Semesters. January to May 2019, late May to August 2019, September to December 2019 and January to May 2020.

Indicative Schedule Evening: Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 18.00 - 22.00 and a number of Saturdays per semester.
Career Bridge classes will be scheduled in during the course and will have a 17.00 start (dates to be confirmed)

While every effort is made to schedule exams for part-time students in the evenings or Saturdays this is not always possible and all students, Part-time and Full-time, are expected to sit end of semester examinations during the day and evening Monday to Saturday

Delivery Location


Delivery Notes


Admissions Contact Details

The Springboard Team


Springboard Office,
National College of Ireland,
Mayor Street,
Dublin 1


1850 221 721



RPL Information

For candidates who do not have a level 8 qualification, the college operates a Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning (RPEL) scheme - meaning applicants who do not meet the normal academic entry requirements, may be considered based on relevant work or other experience. The Springboard Team will provide this form to you if you are required to fill it out

Application Procedures

Throughout the application process please continue to check your Spam and Junk folders in your email account incase some emails from springboard@ncirl.ie default to here instead. In addition, please ensure that you have only one email address registered for Springboard. The email address that you login to your Springboard account with must match the email address that you have on the Springboard application form. Please review the ‘General Tab’ on your application form where your personal information is held to confirm this. If the email address on the application form is different, you will need to be update it. Failure to do so will only cause confusion and as a result you may end up missing vital emails from the Springboard team in regards to your application. We also ask you to review the postal address that you have included on your application form and ensure that is up to date.

This supporting documentation must be uploaded to www.springboardcourses.ie along with your application or within a few days of having submitted your application to ensure that your application can be assessed for a January start.

1. Your current curriculum vitae:
The information on your CV should match the Application Form and it should be completely accurate with no unsupported additions. The Employer Name and Location needs be outlined for each job. If you were unemployed or travelling for a period of time this too needs to be included on your CV including the location(s) of where you resided during that time.

2. Career Statement:
Please include a 300 word career statement detailing what has motivated you to undertake the programme and how the programme fits in with your career objectives. This statement is compulsory and must be course specific. It should clearly demonstrate that you have researched the course and have a broad understanding of the course you are applying for. Unless it refers explicitly to the course you are applying for it will not be accepted. Please also ensure that you have included your full name and the exact course title on the career statement.

3. Educational Transcripts for any relevant qualifications listed in your application form and the final certificates for any qualifications listed in your application form. Alternatively a Diploma Supplement will suffice if it contains a breakdown of all subjects taken for the duration of the course.

4. Candidates whose qualifications are in foreign languages - please ensure all documentation is provided in its original language. You must also have these documents officially translated into English by a professional, registered translation company. Translations done by you, the applicant, are not acceptable. There are a number of such companies here in Dublin 1 who will do this for you.

5. 1 passport sized photograph in JPEG format to be used on your student card (please do not send a copy of your passport or other ID)

6. Non-EU applicants will need to provide a copy of their GNIB card showing a Stamp 4 EUFAM

7. Verification of Status Required: In Employment - please provide a recently dated letter from your current employer on headed paper, signed and dated. Returner - Please provide a letter/statement signed by the Commissioner for Oaths confirming your current status. A form to complete the process is available here: https://springboardcourses.ie/pdfs/Declaration%20for%20Returners.pdf Department of Social Protection - Please provide a recently dated letter confirming that you are on the live register detailing which payment you are in receipt of (alternatively your most recent post office receipt will suffice) or a letter confirming that you are signing for social insurance contribution credits. Previously Self Employed - A letter from your accountant or revenue confirming that your business is no longer trading.

This supporting documentation must be uploaded to www.springboardcourses.ie along with your application or within a few days of having submitted your application to ensure that your application can be assessed for a September start.

Further Documentation/Interview Requirements
Depending on your background you may be required to submit additional documentation and/or participate in an interview or logic test. The Course Director may also request to meet you in person for an informal interview to assess your suitability for the course. We will advise you in due course if any of the above applies to you.

English Language Requirements
Candidates whose first language is not English may also be required to sit the free NCI Academic Competency Test. Regardless of how long you have lived or worked in Ireland if you have not already successfully completed an academic course through English lasting at least one year and if you cannot provide a suitable IELTS or TOEFL test result you may need to do the NCI Academic Competency Test. We will advise you if this applies to you.

Studying Data Analytics at NCI: Frequently Asked Questions

Higher Diploma in Science in Data Analytics or the Postgraduate Diploma in Science in Data Analytics