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    sisurain
    @sisurain
    Hi Lei, I am a econ Ph.D. candidate who is thinking about transit to get an MS computer science degree. Since you have done it successfully. I wish I could get some advice from you. I do not have a background in engineering, so the transition would be a little bit difficult. In terms of application, just don't know what kinds of undergraduate level CS courses I have to finish before applying for the master's degree . And also, most of the application requires some letter of recommendations, ask the current advisor or faculty members in the department would be awkward. I am afraid that they will be disappointed with this idea. If you could share some experience that would be fantastic. Thanks very much!
    Lei Mao
    @leimao
    @sisurain If you were thinking to switch from Econ to CS, instead of data science, you are almost ready to go. The Econ PhD students usually have very solid math skills. The only thing you would probably have to make up is discrete math and basic CS algorithms. I did not know why you would consider the transition, but I would just assume you are feeling unhappy there. You don't need to get recommendation letters from the Econ department or anyone you feel awkward to mention it to. Anyone who knows you well, any course instructor who thinks highly of you, could all become good candidates for recommendation letters.
    sisurain
    @sisurain
    @leimao Thanks very much for your reply. Right now, the department has a rule that I can only take one course outside of the management school. So I have to choose courses carefully. What basic CS algorithms courses or programming/theory courses should I take? For data science, I think it also requires some level of programming skills? It seems to me, that a CS degree is more solid.
    Lei Mao
    @leimao
    @sisurain I personally feel for master's program application, it does not matter whether the recommendation letter is from someone in the field. My recommendations are from three people who are not in the field of computer science.
    I have taken some MOOC courses for your reference: https://leimao.github.io/miscellaneous/mooc/
    For data science, the majority of people are using Python. And I don't recommend to use R.
    sisurain
    @sisurain
    @leimao Thanks very much for sharing the experience.