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MSBDA Program Overview

Why Data Analytics? Why now?

Business data analytics is a fast-growing and evolving field. Large amounts of captured data can be leveraged to solve business problems and make effective decisions throughout an organization. Such fact-based decisions significantly contribute to businesses’ enhanced performance and increased profit.

Currently, business data analytics-related jobs are estimated to be more than 800,000 in the U.S. The number of jobs is expected to grow significantly by 2026 as companies seek to hire analysts to improve their performance. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that data analyst jobs will grow 25 percent between 2019 and 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations

As an essential skillset in any organization, business data analytics will help our graduates find jobs in both public and private sectors across different industries such as cybersecurity, logistics, manufacturing, retail, healthcare, hospitality, education, finance and banking, entertainment and media, etc. Our graduates will be poised to assist their current employers and local area businesses to maximize the utility of the data they generate.

The Curriculum
BDA 6010 Business Systems and Processes

Understanding business processes and process improvements are vital parts of the body of knowledge necessary for anyone in a managerial position. The objective of this course is to familiarize students with the process view of the business organization and how primary and support processes are designed and managed for efficient and effective value creation. Course topics include modeling/analyzing resilient innovative processes, using business architecture as an overarching framework with process-centric systems approach in aligning strategy, people, task, and technology. No Prerequisites

BDA 6020 Introduction to Data Analysis for Business

This course provides the student with the statistical tools and concepts needed to solve business problems and make good decisions in today’s complex world. Students will learn statistical techniques for managerial decision-making, with emphasis on interpretation of the data analyses. Topics include: interpretation of descriptive measures, and introduction to probability distributions, discrete and continuous distributions, data organization, sampling and sampling distributions, confidence interval estimation, hypothesis testing, and simple linear regression. No Prerequisites

BDA 6030 Scripting for Business and Data Analytics

This course is an introduction to a programming language such as Python for business applications. It is designed to give students fundamental programming skills that will prepare them for the business and data analytics job market. Students will learn how to manipulate and prepare structured and unstructured data for analysis in ways commonly used in business practice and applications. Topic loops, functions, objects, and basic algorithms. No Prerequisites

BDA 6110 Data Visualization

This course introduces data visualization including understanding the data types and sources, organizing, integrating, and using design principles, design theory, design thinking, and ethical reasoning as well as visualizing exploratory analysis. Students will also learn to evaluate the effectiveness of visualization designs, and think critically about each design decision, such as choice of color and choice of visual encoding. This course emphasizes using an interactive storytelling approach for data visualization in decision making. Students will use popular data visualization tools to visualize data.  Prerequisites: BDA 6020, BDA 6030

BDA 6130 Database for Business Applications

This course covers fundamental concepts and technologies used for developing database systems for business applications. Students will learn database systems development concepts and acquire skills in data requirements analysis, modeling, normalization, Structured Query Language (SQL), database implementation, database security, transaction management, NoSQL databases, database system administration and emerging database technologies.  In addition, students will complete a database business application project using a Database Management System.  No Prerequisites

BDA 6120 Business and Data Analytics I

This course is an introduction to business and data analytics. A programming language is used for handling, formatting, and visualizing complex data. Students learn the fundamental skills required to acquire, format, transform, manipulate, and create visualization for data exploration and descriptive analysis. Students also learn to use data skills to tell a story with data.  Prerequisites: BDA 6010, BDA 6020, BDA 6030

BDA 6140 Business and Data Analytics II

This course is an overview of advanced topics in business and data analytics focusing on the concepts, techniques, and tools for predictive analytics. Students will learn and apply analytics tools to find and exploit patterns in data in order to detect risks and opportunities, make informed data-driven predictions, and communicate the results using data visualization tools. Topics include regression, clustering, classification, decision trees, and association rules. Students will develop skills through hands-on work using a programming language.  Prerequisites: BDA 6120, BDA 6110

BDA 6210 Business and Data Analytics III

This course is an overview of advanced topics in predictive analytics and the fundamentals of prescriptive analytics. Students will learn techniques on how to extract data and make predictions through social networks, how to optimize business performance, and address the challenges of data-driven business decision making. Topics include social network analytics, sentiment analytics, text mining as well as formulation, solution, interpretation, and implementation of optimization models such as linear programming and network flows. . The course will include hands-on work with data and software. Prerequisites: BDA 6140, BDA 6130

BDA 6220 Contemporary Issues in Business and Data Analytics  

An advanced study of contemporary topics in business and data analytics that include data analytics strategies and trends, best practices for managing and implementing big data analytics projects, measuring return on investment from big data analytics, leadership and governance issues in big data analytics, tools for business intelligence using big data analytics, selecting the right data analytics tools and platforms for specific industries, and challenges. Prerequisites: BDA 6140, BDA 6130

BDA 6830 Capstone

The culminating experience will be a comprehensive project to be directed, reviewed, and assessed by faculty and selected professionals to ensure students’ ability to integrate the knowledge of the area, show critical and independent thinking and demonstrate mastery of the subject matter.  Prerequisites: BDA 6210, BDA 6130