“The intuitive learning process on Dataquest was refreshing. I never became frustrated with technical problems, or had to waste time watching a video before getting on with coding. If I hit a wall, the community was there to help.”

Michael Knight-Roberts

Data Engineering Team Lead @Mango Solutions

Course overview

In this course, you’ll learn how to navigate the filesystem, how to alter permissions for different users, and how to create and run a Python script from the command line. You’ll also learn how to use the terminal on UNIX machines and how to use the command line’s powerful text processing tools like awk and sed. The lack of a graphical user interface (GUI) also makes the command line faster than other approaches for many tasks.
Best of all, you’ll learn by doing — you’ll practice and get feedback directly in the browser. When you finish the course, you’ll have enough hands-on practice that you’ll be comfortable using the command line in your day-to-day data analysis tasks.

Key skills

  • Navigating the command line environment
  • Running bash and Python programs from the command line
  • Modifying the behavior of commands with options
  • Managing users and permissions

Course outline

Command Line for Data Science [5 lessons]

Introduction to the Command Line 1h

Lesson Objectives
  • Employ the command line for data science
  • Employ the filesystem from the command line
  • Modify commands using options
  • Access command history

The Filesystem 1h

Lesson Objectives
  • Inspect directories
  • Navigate the filesystem
  • Employ filesystem navigation shortcuts

Modifying the Filesystem 1h

Lesson Objectives
  • Create directories
  • Delete directories and files
  • Copy directories and files
  • Move and rename directories and files

Glob Patterns and Wildcards 1h

Lesson Objectives
  • Define glob patterns and wildcards
  • Employ wildcards
  • Search for files

Users and Permissions 2h

Lesson Objectives
  • Define the concept of user
  • Identify the purpose of groups
  • Identify the importance of permissions
  • Modify permissions
  • Define the superuser
  • Manage file ownership

The Dataquest guarantee


Dataquest has helped thousands of people start new careers in data. If you put in the work and follow our path, you’ll master data skills and grow your career.


We believe so strongly in our paths that we offer a full satisfaction guarantee. If you complete a career path on Dataquest and aren’t satisfied with your outcome, we’ll give you a refund.

Master skills faster with Dataquest

Go from zero to job-ready

Go from zero to job-ready

Learn exactly what you need to achieve your goal. Don’t waste time on unrelated lessons.

Build your project portfolio

Build your project portfolio

Build confidence with our in-depth projects, and show off your data skills.

Challenge yourself with exercises

Challenge yourself with exercises

Work with real data from day one with interactive lessons and hands-on exercises.

Showcase your path certification

Showcase your path certification

Share the evidence of your hard work with your network and potential employers.

Grow your career with

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Aaron Melton

Business Analyst at Aditi Consulting

“Dataquest starts at the most basic level, so a beginner can understand the concepts. I tried learning to code before, using Codecademy and Coursera. I struggled because I had no background in coding, and I was spending a lot of time Googling. Dataquest helped me actually learn.”


Jessica Ko

Machine Learning Engineer at Twitter

“I liked the interactive environment on Dataquest. The material was clear and well organized. I spent more time practicing then watching videos and it made me want to keep learning.”


Victoria E. Guzik

Associate Data Scientist at Callisto Media

“I really love learning on Dataquest. I looked into a couple of other options and I found that they were much too handhold-y and fill in the blank relative to Dataquest’s method. The projects on Dataquest were key to getting my job. I doubled my income!”

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