How to Get into BloomTech's Data Science Program

December 10, 2020

Bloom Institute of Technology’s (formerly known as Lambda School) data science program is one of the quickest and most affordable ways to become a data scientist. It can also be one of the most fun. Our hiring manager-influenced programs put you in the same (virtual) room as industry pros who arm you with every skill you’ll need to thrive in a career in applied statistics and machine learning. 

If you have a passion for tech and a mind for numbers, getting accepted into BloomTech’s data science program is fairly straightforward. This post will tell you everything you should know to ace the application process.

Before you apply to the Data Science program

BloomTech’s coursework is rewarding but it’s also challenging, so there’s a little bit of housekeeping you’ll need to take care of before you start the application process.

Make sure you meet BloomTech’s requirements

The first thing you should do before applying for the online data science course is make sure you meet BloomTech's applicant requirements. Are you passionate about finding a job in tech? Do you have grit and excitement about the field? Think about your work and home environment. Can you commit to the course schedule? Do you have access to WiFi and a computer with a webcam that will allow you to collaborate with your classmates and instructors online? Are you comfortable collaborating with other people and asking for help when you need it? If you can answer yes to all of those questions, you’re ready.

Ensure that you can commit to the course schedule.

Our programs are rigorous. Every day, you will spend 5 to 7 hours outside of class studying and coding. Although our flexible schedule is designed to fit into your life, plan to invest about 40 hours a week. Ensure that you can commit to the deadlines for projects and challenges.

Learn about BloomTech’s tuition options

At BloomTech, we invest in you. With our popular income share agreement, or ISA, you invest in yourself, too. When you pay for your BloomTech education with an ISA, you’ll start by paying for a fraction of your tuition up front. Once you graduate, we’ll help you land a well-paying job—and then you’ll pay for the rest of your tuition with a percentage of your income for a limited time. 

In other words, an ISA funds your tuition so you can pay back BloomTech later.

Here are some of the basics about ISAs at BloomTech.

  1. Know what you owe. Unlike with a typical loan, the maximum amount you owe will never increase with an ISA. Your total payment amount is capped at $40,000*, and you may end up paying less.

  1. It scales with you. Your goal is to get a great job; that’s our goal for you, too. Once you start earning at least an annualized $50,000** a year, you’ll pay us back with a percentage of your income each month. If your earned income falls below the minimum total amount, your payments will be deferred until your income reaches the minimum again.

  1. No lingering obligations. Your contract is finished once you complete the ISA payment schedule or reach the payment cap, whichever comes first. And if you aren’t making the minimum average monthly income, and have had deferred payments for a total of 48 months, then your ISA expires and you don’t owe anything else—even if you’ve paid nothing up to that point.

At BloomTech, we are committed to providing more people with a direct and lower-risk path to a rewarding tech job. That’s why we offer flexible options to pay your tuition—and launch your new career.

Understand what you’re in for 

It’s important to know what you’re getting yourself into before you get into a BloomTech data science course. BloomTech is fast-paced and immersive, and includes over 900 hours of guided instruction. Our admissions advisors look for career-focused applicants who are digitally savvy and already have some experience with coding. Passionate, proactive, and dedicated students will excel in this kind of course, but it may not be for everyone. If you’re not interested in starting a data science career right away, a BloomTech course probably isn’t the best choice for you.

One thing you can expect as a BloomTech student is to be pushed outside of your comfort zone. You’ll be asked to apply the skills you learn in scenarios you may feel a little awkward in at first. That’s how we prepare graduates for whatever may come in the workplace. If you’re willing to embrace new experiences, you’ll thrive.

You can learn more about what we require at BloomTech in our BloomTech Course Catalog

The BloomTech Data Science application process 

How are we doing? Still excited? If so, you’re ready to apply. BloomTech has an easy, four-step admissions process:

  1. Create an account, complete a data science program application, and complete the entrance exams, including the Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT) and the Data Science skills challenge.
  2. Finalize your enrollment by selecting how you’d like to pay, determining what track you’d like to sign up for, and signing your student enrollment agreement. 
  3. Attend mandatory orientation (we call this “BloomTech Launch”). 
  4. Log on for your first class! 

Once you’ve completed your application, it will be zipped along to our BloomTech Admissions Team for review. We’ll send you an email in one to two days if you’ve been selected to proceed.

Passing the BloomTech entrance exams

Every student who applies for BloomTech’s data science course is required to complete the Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT), which helps us predict your ability to be successful at BloomTech. There are 50 questions on the CCAT that measure verbal, math/logic, and spatial reasoning and you will have 15 minutes to complete the test. It's normal to not complete all 50 questions during the time allotted, so simply do your best.

You'll also be asked to complete a data science skills challenge to show off what you know. This challenge has a 45 minute time limit and will test your knowledge on fundamental data science concepts. You'll need to achieve a score of at least 11/15 to proceed with the application process.

How to prepare

The DS Skills Challenge doesn't require coding. You'll want to brush up on the basics of linear algebra, statistics, and Python so you’re ready to pass the test. Here are some resources to help you prepare:

What happens if you take BloomTech’s data science challenge and you don’t pass? The good news is you’ll be able to retake the test after waiting 24 hours.

BloomTech's DS Skills challenge is intended to get you ready for our data science program. It gives us a sense of what kind of student you’ll be and it also gives you a chance to learn if becoming a data scientist is really your thing before you commit to joining a BloomTech cohort.

Want help preparing? Check out our FREE study guide for the Data Science Challenge!

If you take the challenge and realize you may be interested in the Web Development track, no worries. Contact us at and we’ll help you find a course that fits best.

You will not be able to pick a course start date until you’ve completed the data science challenge, so if you’ve got your heart set on starting at a specific time, you’ll want to complete the challenge at least two weeks in advance. 

What happens next

Once you’ve filled out an application and passed the data science challenge, all we need is a bit of paperwork to get you started. You’ll need to provide us with proof of your educational background, like your college transcripts, high school diploma, or GED certificate. You can take a Wonderlic basic skills test as an alternative if you do not have your diploma or certificate.

After you sign your enrollment agreement, we’ll email you all the information you’ll need to get ready for your first class, including details about your BloomTech Launch. From that point, you’re officially in. Welcome to BloomTech! 

Ready to start your journey to becoming a data scientist? Learn more about the application process and enroll in our free mini coding bootcamp!