CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- Students attending the University of Virginia can now select a major in data science.

Earlier this week, the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia approved an undergraduate major for the UVA School of Data Science.

Before that, undergraduate students could only get a minor in the program while graduate students could work toward master’s and doctoral degrees.

“The B.S. in Data Science is a major milestone for the school,” said Phil Bourne, the founding dean of the school. “It is the final and largest component of end-to-end rigorous data science pre- and postgraduate training for the workforce of today and tomorrow.”

According to a release, current first-year students will be able to apply in the spring for the major assuming they have either completed or are in the process of completing two prerequisite courses.

Students who are then selected for the program will begin their three-year series of courses in the fall.

“The new data science major is a milestone moment and terrific opportunity for the School of Data Science, for the university and for our students,” said UVA President Jim Ryan. “I’m grateful to Dean Bourne and his team for their leadership, creative thinking and hard work in seeing this effort to fruition.”

The release says the curriculum will focus on four domains of data science: analytics, systems, value and designs. Students will then apply the lessons they learn in those to the fifth domain, which is practice.

UVA says it will teach students how to formulate data questions, perform analyses, and then interpret and present findings, making graduates well-equipped to work in a variety of industries.