The Data Science Toolbox

This course is part of the Key Capabilities in Data Science Program.

Learn how to install, maintain and use the core tools in the data scientist’s toolbox. Get an overview of the data science tool ecosystem, as well as hands-on, practical experience working with tools like code sharing and versioning software (e.g., Git & GitHub), reproducible electronic reports and presentation software (e.g., Jupyter notebook), as well as professional interactive development environments for writing code (e.g., Visual Studio Code).

Learn how to:

  • effectively use code sharing and versioning software to organize projects, manage file versions and collaborate with others
  • create, edit and run reproducible electronic reports and presentation software containing Python code using Jupyter Notebooks
  • define and correctly use a project working directory and distinguish between absolute file paths and relative file paths
  • write and execute code written in an interactive development environment
  • install essential software for data science
  • create shippable and shareable compute environments (e.g., Conda environments).

Week 1: Working in the Shell
Week 2: Running Jupyter Locally
Week 3: Version Control
Week 4: Integrated Development Environments
Week 5: Markup Languages and Publishing
Week 6: Project Organization
Week 7: Conda Environments
Week 8: Reading the Docs and Getting Help

How am I Assessed?

Each course module includes an auto-graded assignment. In weeks 5 and 9, you take an online 45-minute open-book quiz that covers materials from modules 1–4 and 5–8 respectively. At the end of Week 8, you complete a final project using the skills you learned in the course. You must obtain an overall grade of 70% or higher and complete the final project to pass the course.

Expected Effort

Expect to spend 8–12 hours per week to complete weekly modules, auto-graded quizzes, open-book quizzes and the final project.

Technology Requirements

To take this course, and for the best experience, we recommend you have access to: 

  • an email account
  • a computer, laptop or tablet
  • the latest version of a web browser (or previous major version release)
  • a reliable internet connection.

For virtual office hours, you’ll also need: 

  • a video camera and microphone. 

One day before the start of your course, we’ll email you step-by-step instructions for accessing your course.


There are no textbooks for this course.

Course Format

This course is 100% online and facilitator supported with weekly facilitator office hours. Course work is done independently and at your own pace within deadlines set by your facilitator. Log in anytime to your course to access the modules. 

Course Virtual Office Hours (subject to change)
Join your facilitator and classmates by video conferencing to discuss course materials and assignments, receive feedback and ask questions. Office hour days and times to be announced.

Available Sessions

Open all | Close all