With the vision to be a world-class institution for data science and computational thinking in and for Africa, Stellenbosch University (SU) established and launched the School for Data Science and Computational Thinking in July 2019.

The school has been hard at work to facilitate non-conventional, trans-faculty approaches to teaching and research in data science and computational thinking at the university in an interdisciplinary way.

The school has now established the African Data Science Academy (ADSA) to carry out the school’s mission to facilitate human capacity building in data science and computational thinking at the University, nationally in South Africa, across Africa and globally. It develops and presents open courses offered by the school as well as bespoke courses developed for our industry and academic partners.

According to Prof Kanshukan Rajaratnam, Director: School for Data Science and Computational Thinking, they are inviting academia and industry to partner with the African Data Science Academy for their training needs and would like to impact both researchers and professionals who want to build their skills in Data Science related fields.

“The African Data Science Academy is a way for the School for Data Science and Computational Thinking to build capacity in this area not just in South Africa and Africa, but across the world. It is an exciting moment where we can bring our world-class academics and internationally known Stellenbosch University quality to the rest of the world. ADSA does not just offer another online course, but adds value through interactions and with our presenters, and delegates have the opportunity find out how to apply the principles in their own fields.”

Online short courses

This coming July, ADSA will be offering two accredited online short courses in partnership with the African Doctoral Academy at SU. Both courses will take place online from 20 to 24 July 2020.

The first course is an Introduction to Statistics with R. R, which is a statistical software programme particularly powerful in data analysis and graphical representation. This course offers an introduction in the application of the programming language R to statistical analysis.  

The second course is an Introduction to Data Science. The short course is designed as an introductory overview to data science explained at the hand of the data science project life cycle.

Prof Rajaratnam says that they have designed the short courses with “high-touch activities in mind,” such as reviews, quizzes, assignments and group work, as well as live or virtual and Q&A sessions with the course presenters.

“The courses are taught by Stellenbosch University's own world-class lecturers from the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science (Introduction to Statistics with R) and from the Department of Industrial Engineering (Introduction to Data Science). The fact that we are offering these courses online allows for students in any part of the world to take these courses and allows us to take Stellenbosch University's world expert academics to the rest of the world.”

  • Further information on the courses can be found on the School for Data Science and Computational Thinking website here, http://www.sun.ac.za/english/data-science-and-computational-thinking.  Potential students can also contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
  • This article by Rozanne Engel
  • In January, Prof Kanshukan Rajaratnam was appointed director of SU’s School for Data Science and Computational Thinking, which was launched in July last year. He holds a doctoral degree in Systems Engineering from the University of Virginia, United States. Most recently, he was an associate professor of Finance and acting dean of the commerce faculty at the University of Cape Town. Prof Rajaratnam has been rated by the National Research Foundation (NRF) and belongs to the South African Young Academy of Science.

 

PS: Prof Kanshukan Rajaratnam, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 0720402390 (available from 14:00)

 

Martin Viljoen 
Manager: Media    

Corporate Communication Division

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