Data Foundations Nanodegree Program FAQ

  • Why should I enroll in the Data Foundations Nanodegree program?

    Learning foundational data skills will have a positive impact on your career, regardless of your role, or field. In this program, you'll master fundamental data analysis skills applicable to any industry or profession. You'll discover why data-driven solutions are more effective, and learn to collect, organize, and analyze data efficiently using Excel and SQL. You'll also explore data visualization with Tableau, and gain key skills that can support career advancement. This program is perfect for anyone looking to learn essential data analysis skills, and there are no prerequisites to enroll—beginners are welcome!

  • How do I know if this program is right for me?

    If you're new to working with data, and are excited to learn foundational data skills, then this program is definitely right for you! Whether you want to accelerate performance in a current role, learn data skills to land a new role, or just get your data fundamentals in place in advance of a future job search, this program offers everything you'll need to get on the path to data fluency. In addition, if you're interested in eventually enrolling in our Data Analyst or Business Analyst Nanodegree programs, this program will fully prepare you for entry into either.

  • What is the difference between the Data Foundations Nanodegree program, and the Data Analyst Nanodegree program?

    While both programs are full-featured Nanodegree programs offering the same suite of benefits and services—such as real-world projects, expert project review, mentorship, career guidance, and more—the two programs are designed to support students with differing degrees of experience and skill.

    Our Data Foundations Nanodegree program is for those new to data. It has no prerequisites, and beginners are welcome. In this program, you'll learn to use statistics, Excel, SQL, and Tableau to describe and analyze data. No previous programming experience is required. Graduates of this program will be prepared to put their data skills to work right away, and will also be qualified to enroll in either our Data Analyst or Business Analyst Nanodegree programs.

    Our Data Analyst Nanodegree program is for learners with intermediate data experience, who are ready to master the skills necessary to pursue full-time data science careers. Programming skills are taught in this program, and so it is ideal for those learners who wish to add programming to their data skillset. (We recommend our Business Analyst Nanodegree program if you wish to learn job-ready data skills without adding a programming component).

  • What are the prerequisites for enrollment?

    No prior experience is required for enrollment. Basic computer skills like managing files, navigating the Internet, and running programs will be useful. We'll teach you everything you need to know, but the difficulty level of the projects may vary based on your familiarity with some of the content that is covered.

  • What technologies will I be learning in this program?

    You will learn spreadsheets, SQL, and Tableau in the program. In the spreadsheets section, the lessons are taught using Microsoft Excel. The SQL lessons can be completed entirely in the classroom. A Tableau license will be provided to all students for the Tableau-specific lessons.

  • Can I use other software that is not Excel for my analysis?

    We recommend that you use Excel since this is what we teach in the course. However, you are welcome to use other comparable software, but keep in mind that the user interface of other programs will not match the one shown in the videos. All exercises and projects can be performed in similar tools like Google Sheets, Numbers, and Open Office.

  • Can you tell me more about Classroom Mentorship?

    Of course! Once you enroll, you will be paired with a Classroom Mentor who will be available to you via messaging within the Udacity Classroom. They can answer questions for you, point you to helpful resources, and give you guidance on strategies for program success. Your mentor is there to help you successfully navigate your Nanodegree program straight through from enrollment to graduation.

  • How do Project Reviews work?

    Every time you submit a project, you will receive in-depth, personalized feedback on your project submission from one of our expert project reviewers. They will not only tell you what you got right and wrong, they will provide guidance on what you should try next, and give suggestions on how you can go even further with your project.

  • What do you mean by "Student Community?"

    As soon as you enroll, you will be given access to the (very!) active student Slack Community specific to this program.This enables you to connect directly with your classmates in real time; all Udacity students regularly use these forums to support each other's work, answer each other's questions, and to share relevant ideas and resources. Virtually all of our graduates highlight this community aspect as one of the most important parts of their Nanodegree program experience.

  • Will I be able to get a job as a Data Analyst after completing this program?

    Employees with skills such as Excel, SQL, and Tableau have average salaries in the $85-$92k range, so there is definitely compelling data that shows the value of learning these skills. However, the program is built for those new to data, so we don't focus specifically on preparing learners to be job ready. However, these skills can definitely have a measurable impact on your job prospects, and graduates will be qualified to enroll in job-ready Nanodegree programs such as Data Analyst and/or Business Analyst.

Program Structure

  • Is this program online, in-person, or some combination of both?

    The program is online, and students interact with peers, mentors, coaches, and instructors in our virtual classrooms and on Slack.

  • Will I need to be available online at specific times for my Data Foundations Nanodegree program?

    The Data Foundations Nanodegree content is available online globally 24/7 in your Udacity classroom.

    Program resources (such as the FAQ, Slack community and in-classroom mentors) are also available online.

    Specific online live events will be announced in advance. Attendance is optional, and archived versions will be made available to all students shortly after the live event takes place.

  • Will I be able to pause my Nanodegree program?

    The fixed-term nature of the Data Foundations Nanodegree program, and the need for maintaining a consistent and stable student body throughout, precludes offering the option to pause your studies.

  • Is this program self-paced?

    It is not. The Data Foundations Nanodegree program is a three-month program with fixed start and end dates.

  • How many hours a week should I expect to spend on my coursework?

    Between instructional content, quizzes, projects, and other course-related activity, we estimate that investing 10 hours/week will enable you to proceed through the curriculum at a successful pace.

  • How long will I have access to the content?

    The program is paced to be completed in 3-months (13 weeks). All students will have access to the content for an additional 4 weeks to submit and pass all the projects, for a total of 17 weeks. Students who graduate from the program will have access to the material for as long as this program and materials are made available on the Udacity platform.

  • Will I have access to the material even after the term ends?

    Yes! Successful graduates of our Nanodegree program are eligible to keep curriculum access. Please note however, that students who leave the program—or who are removed from the program—prior to successfully graduating, will cease to have access.


  • Are there additional costs to this program?

    The one-time payment comprises your full tuition cost, and as such, should cover the majority of everything necessary to successfully complete all the Nanodegree program requirements. One thing to note, the spreadsheets section of the program uses Microsoft Excel. The exercises and projects can be done using free software, such as Google Sheets or Open Office, but if you’d prefer to use Microsoft Excel, you’ll have to purchase a license. You can purchase a license for as low as $6.99/month after a 30-day free trial.

  • Is there a free trial period for this program?

    There is no free trial period for this program, but there is a 7-day refund policy in place at the beginning of the Term. You can cancel your Term and obtain a full refund within the 7-day window by going to the Nanodegree Programs section of your Settings page.

  • Are there any scholarships being awarded?

    Scholarship opportunities are posted on our scholarships page.

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