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Education Bachelor's degree programmes Data Science & Society
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Data Science & Society

Is data the new oil? Can facial recognition systems perpetuate bias? Do fitness-tracking apps impact infrastructure planning?Join our programme as we explore these questions! Master the art of understanding data and delve into the ethical and societal impacts of technology. Gain future-proof data skills to shape a better world!

✔️ Gain valuable skills like programming while paying attention to social, ethical and political aspects of datafication

✔️ Learn from international lecturers with different areas of expertise, from governance to data visualization, and explore your interests

✔️ Develop as a data professional by learning how to communicate and present data-based insights and gain future-proof skills to excel in your career!

Explore Data Science & Society stories on our blog!

Data is neither good, nor bad, nor neutral. We can’t live without it, so data circulation matters! By studying this future-oriented bachelor, you dive deeper in the social aspects of Data Science and study datafied decision-making processes. At the same time, you learn how to use and apply technical data science skills. At Campus Fryslân you will get the opportunity to foster your personal development in a hands-on, international learning community.

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Facts & Figures
BSc in Data Science and Society
Course type
36 months (180 ECTS)
Croho code
Language of instruction
Campus Fryslân
Studie in Cijfers
Why study this programme in Leeuwarden?
  • Unique bachelor's programme in the Netherlands that brings ethical and governance considerations into the world of Data Science
  • 2024 top-rated programme by Keuzegids (annual Dutch education guide)
  • Designed to align with the evolving demands of today's and tomorrow's job market
  • Unique student journey with personalized, hands-on learning on a small scale
  • Direct engagement through industry collaborations in field projects

In the first half of the first year, you will grasp the basics of data science and society. This includes learning fundamental programming skills, understanding governance and regulations related to data and technology, and exploring human rights in relation to data creation and usage.

In the second half of the first year, you will strengthen key statistical skills essential for the programme, especially at the start of the second year when problem-solving and modeling become focal. You will also delve deeper into topics like governance and human rights.

CoursesCourse Catalog >1a1b2a2b
Introduction to Data Science & Society (5 EC)
Programming for Data Science (5 EC)
Science and Technology Studies I (5 EC)
Governance & Regulation of Innovation I: Introduction (5 EC)
Human Rights in the Digital Age I: Human Dignity (5 EC)
Visualising Data (5 EC)
Data Science I: Databases and Datasources (5 EC)
Statistical and Machine Learning (5 EC)
Statistical Inference (5 EC)
Data Science II: Big Data Analytics (5 EC)
Governance and Regulation of Innovation II: Responsibility (5 EC)
Science and Technology Studies II (5 EC)

After the first half of the programme, you're equipped with core knowledge to specialize in either Cognitive Technology or Regulation, Governance, and Innovation. In year 2, blocks 3 and 4 focus on courses in your chosen specialization, accompanied by a Field Project. Here, you'll collaborate with partners from the private and public sectors to address challenges in data science and society.

CoursesCourse Catalog >1a1b2a
Data Science III: Using Data to Solve Business Problems (5 EC)
Data Science IV: Using Data to Solve Social Problems (5 EC)
Human Rights in the Digital Age II: Reconsidering Impact (5 EC)
Data Science V: Visual Rethoric (5 EC)
Governance and Regulation of Innovation III: RegTech (5 EC)
Simulation Exercise (5 EC)
Field project (10 EC)
Specialisation Courses: Cognitive Technology or Governance and Regulation of Innovation (20 EC)

In year 3, the first two blocks are dedicated to the minor space: here you can choose to deepen or broaden your programme by taking a minor abroad, following a specially designed premaster or composing your own personal minor.

In the third block of year 3 you will again follow courses in your chosen specialization. In the last block of the programme you will write your bachelor thesis which will be the concluding work of the programme.

CoursesCourse Catalog >1a1b2a2b
Minor Space: regular minor, semester abroad, internship or personal minor (15 EC)
Minor Space: regular minor, semester abroad, internship or personal minor (15 EC)
Specialisation Courses: Cognitive Technology or Regulation, Governance and Innovation (15 EC)
Bachelor Thesis (15 EC)

Study load

40 hours of class and self-study per week on average

Programme options
Specialisation Cognitive Technology (specialization)

In the specialisation Cognitive Technology we will look at data and cognition, with specific attention to voice technology and computer vision. We investigate how cognition is (not) like data processing and we examine human data relating to the sensory modalities of audition and vision. Since audition and vision are adaptive, biological mechanisms which are shaped by memory, familiarity, knowledge, and culture, we are paying attention to the intersection of data in the social science and humanities. We also explore technological developments dedicated to e.g. voice technology and computer vision and investigate their social impact potential and the many implications they (might) have for privacy, security, and broader innovation.

Specialisation Regulation, Governance and Innovation (specialization)

The Regulation, Governance and Innovation specialisation is dedicated to the questions of how data is, could and should be used to create a positive impact on society. In this specialisation you will learn to analyse and shape data-based practices, products and services to ensure that technology respects and protects societal values such as human rights, democracy and the rule of law. You will explore data-driven technologies that are linked to wider efforts to promote and support societal aspirations such as human dignity in the digital age, responsibility, fairness, trust and sustainability (as for example expressed through the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals).

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is optional

Studying abroad for your minor in Year 3 is optional, not mandatory. It's a choice that allows you to enrich your curriculum by experiencing university life in a different country. The University of Groningen is connected to a vast global network of partner universities, ensuring a range of opportunities aligned with your interests.

Entry requirements

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
previous education

VWO with Wiskunde A or B or HBO-propedeuse diploma or Colloquium doctum

  • Colloquium doctum applicants are advised to apply until December
additional subject
  • VWO English or one of the certified English tests
  • Mathematics: VWO Mathematics A or VWO Mathematics B
grade list

Final transcript. If you have yet to graduate, please include at least all the transcripts from the previous one and a half years up to your most recent transcripts.

other admission requirements

Choice of degree programme check

The degree programme will organize a matching procedure. Attendance is optional. The advice is not binding.

Explanatory notes

Campus Fryslân believes students can decide for themselves whether they match with their chosen programme based on the available bachelor programme information, by visiting the Open Days, by participating in a Webinar, and/or Student for a Day. If you are unable to attend one of these activities, a final opportunity for matching is to contact the DSS team.

Registration procedure

Students with Dutch diploma have to apply via

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202501 September 2025
EU/EEA students01 May 202501 September 2025
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202501 September 2025

Choice of degree programme check

Campus Fryslân believes students can decide for themselves whether they match with their chosen programme based on the available bachelor programme information, by visiting the Open Days, by participating in a Webinar, and/or Student for a Day. If you are unable to attend one of these activities, a final opportunity for matching is to contact the DSS team.

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
previous education

VWO international equivalent*

additional subject

DSS has a mathematics requirement. If you did not obtain one of the mentioned requirements, then you are asked to provide us with a Mathematics course description with your online application. If your mathematics level is deemed insufficient, you will be required to obtain one of the accepted Mathematics proficiency certificates

grade list

Final Transcript. If you have yet to graduate, please include at least all the transcripts from the previous one and a half years up to your most recent transcripts.

language test

English: see language requirements

other admission requirements

Language requirements

ExamMinimum score
C1 Advanced (formerly CAE)C1
C2 Proficiency (formerly CPE)C2
IELTS overall band6.5
IELTS listening6
IELTS reading6
IELTS writing6
IELTS speaking6
TOEFL internet based90

Registration procedure

Students have to apply via and submit their documents via the Progress Portal of the University of Groningen. After uploading all the required documents, you will be informed if you're deemed admissible based on our admission criteria.

To complete your application, you should hand in the following documents:

  • Proof of enrolment/Graduation statement OR Diploma
  • Transcript of Grades
  • Proof of English Language Proficiency (if applicable)
  • Proof of mathematics skills (if applicable)

Application fee
As of academic year 2023-2024 all applicants with a non-Dutch qualification will have to pay an application fee of 100 euros.
More information about application fee and application procedure can be found on: Admission and application.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202501 September 2025
EU/EEA students01 May 202501 September 2025
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202501 September 2025
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2024-2025€ 2530full-time
non-EU/EEA2024-2025€ 13100full-time

Practical information for:

After your studies

After graduation, you can join the job market or pursue a master's programme in your chosen field. Thanks to the interdisciplinarity of the programme, you develop the ability to collaborate with individuals from diverse backgrounds, a skill that is highly relevant in today's job market. As the programme prepares you to be a bridge-builder across sectors, you can position yourself as an expert in digitalisation and data management, able to translate data into the language of your stakeholders.

Job prospects

The programme molds you into a professional who stands at the forefront of rapidly emerging topics and knows how to address the challenges of today and tomorrow.

Job examples

  • Data Engineer

    A Data Engineer develops, constructs, tests, and maintains architectures, such as databases and large-scale processing systems. This is a more technical role that focuses on designing applications and data infrastructures.

  • Data Scientist

    An increasing number of organisations is hiring Data Scientists. They work on designing and constructing new processes for data modeling and production using prototypes, algorithms, predictive models, and custom analysis. This is relevant to solving problems in the business and governance domain.

  • Data Analyst

    A Data Analyst focuses on processing and performing statistical analysis on existing datasets. This is a function that is needed both in the private and public sector in many organisations.

  • Data Protection Officer

    A Data Protection Officer ensures that an organization processes the personal data of its staff, customers, providers or any other individuals (also referred to as data subjects) in compliance with the applicable data protection rules.

  • Policy Advisor

    A Policy Advisor is a professional who provides ideas or plans that are used by an organization or government as a basis for making decisions.


DSS and research

Lecturers, researchers, and partners of the DSS programme collaborate on various projects at the UG's Jantina Tammes School of Digital Society, Technology and AI, as well as Campus Fryslân's own Data Research Centre.

The Jantina Tammes School explores how societies can benefit from and contribute to digitization, digital technologies, and artificial intelligence under the motto "digital prosperity for all." The Data Research Centre focuses on three areas (Data Governance, Security and Human Rights; Human-Data Interaction; and Data Applications and Organisations) and functions as a co-creation space between researchers, students, and external stakeholders for research in data science and its societal implications. Students get the opportunity to actively participate in events and lectures organised by these two organisations.
Apply nowBrochureEventsContact
open dagdiverse locatiesMore information
Student for a Day: Data Science & SocietyWirdumerdijk 34More information


  • Service Desk Cf (For questions related to DSS, selection procedure and general information, kindly contact)
    Email: cf-dss
    Telephone: 058-2055000
						Testimonial of Ali

    I chose to study this programme because Data Science is a dynamic field. This programme does not only еquip mе with tеchnical skills, but also fostеrs a critical pеrspеctivе on thе sociеtal and еthical implications of data-drivеn dеcisions.

    – Ali
						Testimonial of Tessa

    This bachelor not only offers you essential knowledge of data Science, law and ethics, preparing you for the evolving business landscape, but also allows you to explore your own specific interests.

    – Tessa
    Read more

    Regardless of your stance on the digital landscape, whether you approach it with skepticism, concerned about the risks of social media, or as an optimist envisioning groundbreaking advancements such as early disease detection using predictive analytics, your perspective is valued within this program.


Study associations

Nobis Cura Futuri

Nobis Cura Futuri is the Study Association and the official embodiment of the international student community at Campus Fryslân.
Founded in 2020, we aim to provide plenty of fun, social and academic events (think of Pub crawls, talent shows, travels, guest-speaker evenings). All in the spirit of Nobis Cura Futuri: “The Care of the Future is Ours”, meaning we strive to provide activities that are aimed at making the most of your student life by adhering to our values of responsibility, diversity, sustainability and development.
Read more
Student profile

Are you passionate about the power of data and its impact on society? And interested in advanced data visualization, programming, and statistics? Do you enjoy collaborating with other peers and tackling social issues? If you find yourself in these qualities, this programme is an ideal fit!

Student Profile:

  • Analytical & critical thinker
  • Problem solver & detail-oriented
  • Innovative, progressive & creative
  • Passionate about societal challenges
  • Team player & effective communicator
(Binding) study advice
  • A minimum of 45 EC in the first 12 months (binding)

You will be offered study advice after the first year of study. You can expect a positive result if you have earned more than 45 ECTS credit points (out of a total of 60 ECTS). If you have earned fewer than 45 ECTS and are issued a negative result, you will not be allowed to continue with your degree programme.

You will receive preliminary study advice in December to make sure that you know where you stand. Please contact your study advisor as soon as possible if you have any questions about the BSA system. N.B. Some degree programmes use a tutoring system; please check with your study advisor.

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