Principal Data Scientist (PDS)/data-science-certifications/principal-data-scientist

Principal Data Scientist

If you've been setting up, equipping and inspiring organizations for harnessing the power of data analytics and data intelligence to drive their business, compete and grow, PDS™ is the credential that exactly befits your stature as a high-worth technology leader and influencer.

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HOME DASCA Certifications Principal Data Scientist

Powerfully Distinctive

PDS™ is the most highly-regarded validation of the technical and strategic potential, competence, and readiness for performing challenging Data Science leadership roles across a wide variety of organizations and sectors. PDS™ qualified professionals directly drive and impact outcomes in business, governance, security, research, social development, and education through innovative deployment of the latest in data science and analytics technologies.


PDS™ Demonstrates and Reinforces Your Stature…

  • as an ahead-of-the-pack data scientist who can transform data- and business-intelligence infrastructure in organizations
  • as a thought-, idea- and technology leader in the community of data science experts
  • as an accomplished architect and manager of enterprise-wide business intelligence systems
  • as an influencer of development and application trends in data science and technologies
  • as a growth champion who drives organizational and business outcomes through data science

The PDS™ is a Credential for Life

PDS™ is both, a qualification-credential, and a professional designation. While your PDS™ credential once awarded will never expire; you have to update your professional achievements and learning on your myDASCA dashboard once every five years to continue keeping your PDS™ designation in good standing. Your myDASCA dashboard has all the reminders and action spaces you require for the purpose.

Track 1

For Invite-Only Applicants
US$ 850

Track 3

For Upgrade from SDS™
US$ 750

Track 2

Via Corporate Nomination
US$ 1250

Track 4

For Open Applications
US$ 1450

Track 1

For Invite-Only Applicants
US$ 850

Track 2

Via Corporate Nomination
US$ 1250

Track 3

For Upgrade from SDS™
US$ 750

Track 4

For Open Applications
US$ 1450


Fee for Track 1 Applicants: is one-time, and covers all non-exam assessment components; study resources (the Data Science Handbook 1 and the Data Science Handbook 2); the PDS™ digital badge; the PDS™ credential kit, and shipping of all material. Digital access and LMS hosting costs of optional 3rd party study resources are also included in the PDS™ fee package wherever applicable.

Fee for Track 2 & Track 4 Applicants: is one-time and covers the PDS™ certification exam and other assessment components; study and exam-preparation resources (the Data Science Handbook 1 and the Data Science Handbook 2); the PDS™ digital badge; the PDS™ credential kit, and shipping of all material. Digital access and LMS hosting costs of optional 3rd party study resources are also included in the PDS™ fee package wherever applicable.

Fee for Track 3 (SDS™ Upgrade) Applicants: is one-time and covers all non-exam assessment components; the PDS™ digital badge; the PDS™ credential kit, and shipping. Since SDS™ candidates already have the data science handbooks and access to 3rd-party digital learning resources, and there is no certification exam, no study material is shipped or shared with Track 3 applicants as part of the package.

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Key Highlights

  • Globally Recognized

    A globally-recognized and industry-accepted vendor-neutral and cross-platform qualification, PDS™ is considered among the world’s top-ranked data science certifications for senior professionals.

  • Digital Convenience

    Apply and register for the PDS™ program online; access policy resources; schedule your PDS™ certification exam, and complete other PDS™ assessments right on your personalized and exclusive myDASCA digital dashboard!

  • All Assessments Online

    All PDS™ assessments are digital and online. The PDS™ certification exam is digitally proctored and can be taken anywhere. The other PDS™ assessments can be completed right on the myDASCA dashboard.

  • Ample Time To Complete Requirements

    Candidates have full one year from the date of registration confirmation to qualify their PDS™ certification exam and complete the other PDS™ assessment requirements. For PDS™ exam preparation, self-study of 8-10 hours/ week is generally recommended.

  • High-Quality Preparation Resources

    All PDS™ candidates are provided PDS™ assessment guide, print copies of specially-written Data Science Handbooks and online reference and learning resources from 3rd-party content providers to assist in completing the exam and other assessment requirements.

  • Exclusive PDS™ Digital Badge

    Candidates who complete the PDS™ requirements receive an exclusive PDS™ digital badge to showcase and share their PDS™ certification on the social media. This is in addition to the printed certificate and lapel pin.

Check Your Readiness for PDS™

You are ready for PDS™ if your mindset, experiences, accomplishments, skillsets and knowledge give you the confidence that you can help drive one whole, large, global, complex organization toward success through leveraging big data as an asset. More specifically, ideal PDS™ candidates bring to the table a rich breadth of knowledge and exposure to diverse business and management functions, strategy, value chain, marketing and finance, besides being data-technology experts. The knowledge requirements and rigor of the PDS™ necessitate that candidates have a prior, strong formal exposure and knowledge of advanced concepts in Statistics, and are hands-on with the tools and techniques of developing and managing data analytics and business intelligence infrastructure in organizations.

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Candidacy

Ideal PDS™ candidates demonstrate leadership in designing, executing and managing enterprise-wide data and business intelligence systems. Their careers exhibit a consistent steak of professional contribution and an express potential to push the frontiers of data science, develop business intelligence for organizations. Applications for PDS™ are accepted along 4 tracks currently throughout the year.

  • This track is open for invited-only data science professionals and data scientists with impressive career accomplishments and proven track records of influencing development, innovation, propagation and application of new data technologies and approaches to harnessing data in their organizations, industries and countries, driving their businesses, efficiency, profitability and market shares. PDS™ certification exam (Level 1 component) is exempted for Track 1 applicants.

    Invite Process

    Invites for PDS™ are periodically sent to senior data and technology professionals showing glittering career accomplishments in their last 10 years, and who have influenced best practices and driven transformational outcomes for their organizations through their efforts and results in aspects like Data Architecting, Data Governance, Business Intelligence and Data Science applications in AI or IoT among others. A majority of invited professionals hold a Ph.D or a Master’s in Data Sciences/ Machine Learning/ Artificial Intelligence/ Computer Science/ Mathematics/ Statistics/ Engineering/ Applied Sciences/ Economics/ Finance/ Management/ Data Warehousing or Enterprise Data Management or related disciplines.

  • This track is for senior data science professionals and data scientists who are being sponsored by their employer-organizations. Track 2 candidates require to complete all 4 levels of PDS™ assessments and typically exhibit experience and exposure in development, innovation, propagation and application of new data technologies and approaches to harnessing data in their organizations.


    Process & Candidacy

    Applicants for this track must have worked for a minimum 10 years across functions and specializations including data analytics with exposure, experience and expertise in important enterprise application areas such as Big Data Architecting, Data Engineering, Data application development, Business Analytics Application Development, Business Intelligence Solution Design or Data Science applications in AI or IoT. Candidates for this track should have at least completed a Bachelor's Degree in Data Sciences/ Machine Learning/ Artificial Intelligence/ Computer Science/ Mathematics/ Statistics/ Engineering/ Applied Sciences/ Economics/ Finance/ Management/ Data Warehousing or Enterprise Data Management or related disciplines.

  • This track is ideal for individuals already holding the Senior Data Scientist (SDS™) credential and a Master’s degree along with at least 10 years of experience in the technology space. They are exempt from the PDS™ certification exam and require to cpmplete only the PDS™ Levels II, III and IV submissions-based assessments.

    Specific Candidacy Requirements

    Track 3 applicants should have been holding an active SDS™ credential for at least 1 year at the time of applying, and have completed a Master's degree in Information Technology/ Computer Science/ Mathematics/ Statistics/ Engineering/ Applied Sciences/ Economics/ Finance/ Management/ Data Sciences/ Machine Learning/ Artificial Intelligence/ Predictive Analytics/ Prescriptive Analytics/ Data Visualization/ Data Warehousing/ Enterprise Data Management/ Business Process Modeling or related disciplines. Track 3 applicants also require to have an illustrious work history of at least 10 years in technology and data science areas.

  • Rapidly growing Data Scientists, Senior Data Analysts, Experienced Data Engineers, Data Architects and Data Consultants holding PhD or Master’s Degrees, and 8 or more years of experience in the technology space can choose this track. They have to qualify the PDS™ Levels I, II, III and IV assessments to earn their PDS™ credential.

    Specific Candidacy Requirements

    A Master’s/ Ph.D. degree in Data Sciences/ Machine Learning/ Artificial Intelligence/ Computer Science/ Mathematics/ Statistics/ Engineering/ Applied Sciences/ Economics/ Finance/ Management/ Data Warehousing or Enterprise Data Management or related disciplines is a must to apply under this track. Master’s degree holders must have worked 10 years (Ph.D – 8 years) across functions and specializations including data analytics, with exposure, experience and expertise in important enterprise application areas such as Big Data Architecting, Data Engineering, Data application development, Business Analytics Application Development, Business Intelligence Solution Design or Data Science applications in AI or IoT.

Unable to Find the Right PDS™ Track?


If none of the four PDS™ Tracks seem to be applicable for you, we strongly advise you to consider SDS™; complete the program; earn your SDS™, and then apply for PDS™ after 1 year as an upgrade candidate under PDS™ Track 3. SDS™ especially suits those applicants best who are preparing to move up to data scientist roles after a good stint as data analysts or data engineers in senior positions.

Earning the PDS™

Earning the PDS™ is an exciting journey of shaping and sharpening your capacity to impact business and industry through innovative deployment of data science. While at your fastest, you can complete it in 3 to 6 months, at your busiest, you have a year to complete the requirements for PDS™.

The PDS™ journey is marked by the following important stages and milestones:

  • Stage 1: Completion of your PDS™ registration formalities
  • Stage 2: Study and exam preparation using the provided learning resources (Exams only for Track 2 and Track 4; No exam for Track 3 candidates, but they can study from the resources they received as SDS™ candidates)
  • Stage 3: Completion of 4 assessment milestones:
  • Milestone 1: Complete non-exam assessment component 1 (submission-based) on myDASCA dashboard – for all tracks
  • Milestone 2: Complete non-exam assessment component 2 (submission-based) on myDASCA dashboard – for all tracks
  • Milestone 3: Complete non-exam assessment component 3 (submission-based) on myDASCA dashboard – for all tracks
  • Milestone 4: Qualify the final component – the online PDS™ certification exam (applicable only for PDS™ Tracks 2 and 4)
  • Stage 4: Award of the PDS™ credential and designation

What is the PDS™ Assessment Structure?

The PDS™ program includes 4 (four) assessment components. The first three components are non-exam, involving submissions about career and professional achievements on your myDASCA dashboard. The final, fourth component is the remote-proctored, online PDS™ certification exam with multiple choice questions. The PDS™ exam can be booked and scheduled from your myDASCA dashboard, and taken anywhere at your convenience. While the first three non-exam components are mandatory for all candidates, the PDS™ certification exam is applicable only for Track 2 and Track 4 candidates.

  • Structure for Track 1 & Track 3 Candidates

    • Component 1 – 40%
    • Component 2- 40%
    • Component 3 – 20%
    • Component 4 – PDS™ exam 0% (exempted)
  • Structure for Track 2 & Track 4 Candidates

    • Component 1 – 25%
    • Component 2- 30%
    • Component 3 – 15%
    • Component 4 – PDS™ exam - 30%

Though the entire program can be completed in minimum 3 months, the maximum period allowed is 1 calendar year.

PDS™ Non-Exam Assessment Components

The 3 mandatory non-exam PDS™ assessment components include evaluation of candidate-submitted information on professional development, leadership, accomplishments and professional impact. Candidates require to make these submissions in the assessments section of their myDASCA dashboard directly. A special committee evaluates these submissions entirely on the basis of facts and information shared by the candidates.

Submission 1: Candidate’s Professional Growth story captured in five brief statements of 300-500 words each.

Submission 2: Candidate’s Career Accomplishments summary captured in five brief statements of 300-500 words each.

Submission 3: Candidate’s account of Professional Impact & Influence captured in five brief statements of 300-500 words each.

The PDS™ Certification Exam

The remote-proctored PDS™ certification exam is booked and scheduled from the myDASCA dashboard, and can be taken online anywhere by candidates. Detailed information about the exam process is available on the myDASCA dashboard. Learn more about the PDS™ Exam structure here. The two data science handbooks provided to candidates are prescribed resources for preparing for the online PDS™ certification exam.

PDS™ Certification Exam - Coverage Information

  • Data Science Applications in Business
    15% +
  • The Functional Framework of Data Science
    18% +
  • Driving Business Through Big Data Analytics
    17% +
  • Building Pan-Organization Support
    15% +
  • Data Science Essentials for Data Scientists
    15% +
  • Big Data Analytics Essentials for Data Scientists
    10% +
  • Advanced Data Science for Data Scientists
    10% +

The PDS™ Handbooks

Candidates completing their registration in the Principal Data Scientist (PDS™) program receive a set of two handbooks, exclusively prepared for them. The first handbook covers themes on development of analytics and big data processing capabilities in organizations. The second handbook is on themes covering higher-order outcomes for data scientists primarily including business intelligence.

PDS™ Credential Certificate

The Digitally Badged PDS™

Candidates who successfully complete all the requirements of the PDS™ qualification and designation are issued the PDS™ digital badge as well, in addition to the printed PDS™ certificate and the PDS™ designation pin. The verifiable PDS™ digital badge by CredBadge™ can be shared on the social media to showcase their credentialing achievement.

Apply for PDS™
digital badge
PDS™ Credential Certificate

The PDS™ Credential Pack

Candidates completing and qualifying all the requirements for the PDS™ qualification receive a PDS™ credential pack containing a printed PDS™ certificate, a lapel pin and Code of Ethics booklet.

Earning the PDS™ - Key Steps

There are six distinct steps to your PDS™ certification journey. Here’s a quick tour of what these steps look like. You may Contact Us for more information.

  • 01

    Step 1: Choose the Right Registration Track

    Start by confirming your fit for PDS™ and choosing one of the four registration tracks that match your profile best. You can Check here if the PDS™ certification meets your career needs and also that you satisfy the minimum candidacy/ eligibility requirements prescribed for PDS™.

  • 02

    Step 2: Create Your myDASCA Account

    Next, you must create your myDASCA account to start the application process and indicate in your application form if you are eligible for QualiFly™ program benefits. Once you have submitted the online PDS™ application and paid the fee, you will receive an acknowledgment response email with instructions for the next steps in the PDS™ registration process.

    Please do note, your PDS™ application may be randomly picked for a detailed candidacy check and you may receive a notification for this separately. This is an internal DASCA quality management exercise and has nothing to do with your application. If this happens, then you will be requested to fill out a Candidacy Verification form and share proofs of the qualifications and work experience you may have mentioned in your PDS™ application.

  • 03

    Step 3: PDS™ Registration Confirmation

    Once your PDS™ application is accepted and you have completed your fee payment, your registration in PDS™ is deemed complete and a registration confirmation message is sent to you. At this point, the full access to your myDASCA account too would be activated.

  • 04

    Step 4: Shipment of PDS™ Handbooks

    For Track 1, Track 2 and Track 4 candidates, instructions are released within 72 hours of registration confirmation to ship the consignment of the two Data Science Handbooks to their addresses registered with DASCA. Standard delivery timeframe is 3-4 weeks. You must verify the shipping address mentioned on your myDASCA dashboard, and change it if you wish to, within 72 hours of completing your fee payment. If you are a Track 3 candidate, we do not send the handbooks, as you already received them as an SDS™ candidate.

  • 05

    Step 5: Complete the Required PDS™ Assessment Milestones!

    In this stage, you have to complete the assessment milestones relevant for you. Candidates from Tracks 2 and 4 have to complete all the 4 assessment milestones, including the PDS™ certification exam. Track 1 and Track 3 candidates have to complete only the first three milestones having non-exam components, as the PDS™ certification exam is exempted for them. All the PDS™ assessment milestones can be completed right on your dashboard. There is no big hurry, though. DASCA gives PDS™ candidates a period of 1 year from the date of registration confirmation to complete the assessment milestones.

  • 06

    Step 6: You Are Certified!

    Once you complete all the required PDS™ Milestones and associated assessments, the award of the PDS™ certification is approved for you. While the PDS™ Digital Badge is released within 96 hours of the award approval, you can expect the physical PDS™ credential kit (containing a printed PDS™ certificate and the PDS™ designation pin) to reach you within 3-4 weeks from the date of award.

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