“The goal is to turn data into information, and information into insight,” Carly Fiorina, former CEO of HP, said. But where’s this magic best taught? We look at some of the best colleges for analytics programs that help you turn into data wizards.
Top Master’s in Analytics Programs and Colleges
Michigan State University
Professors from the Broad College of Business, College of Engineering, and the College of Natural Science help conduct Michigan’s one-year, full-time Master of Science in Business Analytics. (Tuition: $39,000.)
Admission criteria: Bachelor’s degree (grade 3 or above), college-level courses in introductory calculus and statistics, knowledge of programming packages such as C, C++, Python, Java, and HTML, experience with statistical software programs, and good GMAT/GRE and TOEFL/IELTS scores.
Curriculum highlights: Focus on business analytics methods and data management processes, experiential project management learning, data mining, interpreting/communicating data analysis, and applied statistics.
Career support: The career services advisor provides résumé review, practice interviews, etc., and conducts spring and fall fairs for internships and employment, respectively, besides workshops.
University of Texas, Austin
UT’s 10-month Master of Science in Business Analytics, conducted by McCombs School of Business, is for students interested in risk management, applied statistics and math, and consumer theory. (Tuition: $44,000.)
Curriculum highlights: The program is divided into the foundation, application, and demonstration components. Electives include social network analytics, supply chain analytics, and quantitative trading.
Admission criteria: Mandatory requirements are an undergraduate degree, mathematical aptitude, communication skills, GPA of 3 or higher, GMAT/GRE scores that are less than five years old, and a TOEFL/IELTS report that is less than two years old.
Career support: The career development team guides students from cover-letter development to interview preparation.
Georgia Institute of Technology
Georgia Tech’s one-year Master of Science in Analytics is for students with backgrounds in business, computer science, economics, linguistics, engineering, theater, statistics, and history. (Tuition: $49,000.)
Curriculum highlights: The interdisciplinary core lays the foundation. Students can choose topics for 15 hours of electives. A practicum with organizations concludes the program.
Admission criteria: Bachelor’s degree/basic background in mathematics and computing, GMAT/GRE and TOEFL (IELTS not accepted) scores, and three recommenders.
Career support: Georgia Tech has a job search service that achieved 100 percent placement rate for its first batch of MSA graduates (Summer 2015).
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MIT’s one-year Master of Business Analytics program, launched in Fall 2016, is for recent graduates, early career professionals, engineers, computer programmers, mathematicians, and physicists. (Tuition: $75,000.)
Curriculum: The mandatory courses include five fundamental subjects, three focused electives, one summer capstone experience, one project class, six three-hour modules, and one pro-seminar.
Admission criteria: A bachelor’s degree, strong grounding in mathematics, computer science, and statistics; good academic, extracurricular, and professional records; GMAT/GRE scores, etc.
Career support: Graduates are made employment-ready for sectors such as management consulting, technology, manufacturing, financial services, healthcare, and energy with assistance from the Career Development Office.
University of Southern California’s 18-month MS in Business Analytics focuses on business functions across various sectors including banking, finance, healthcare, marketing, and manufacturing. (Tuition: $59,000.)
Admission criteria: Four-year bachelor’s degree, competitive GPA, and GMAT/GRE and TOEFL/IELTS/PTE scores. Work experience is preferred, but not required.
Curriculum highlights: Twenty-one units of required coursework and 12 units from electives over three semesters. The program may be taken full-time or part-time.
Career support: USC’s Career Strategist provides full-time assistance for internship/job search. Graduates can also leverage USC’s strong relations with global employers.
Carnegie Mellon Heinz College
“Master of Information Systems Management: Business Intelligence and Data Analytics” (MISM-BIDA) is a 16-month program conducted by Carnegie Mellon’s Heinz College for those with engineering, IT, and physics backgrounds. (Tuition: $23,000 per semester.)
Curriculum: As many as 180 units of coursework (15 semester-length courses), 10-week summer internship, entrepreneurship competition, and exchange projects.
Admission criteria: A minimum of college-level course in object-oriented computer programming with at least a grade B. Relevant work experience improves candidate profile.
Career support: Heinz College helps students to develop personalized career plans and to build resources for career progress.
Other courses: Carnegie runs a part-time program, “Master of Science in IT: Business Intelligence and Data Analytics” (MSIT-BIDA), and an MBA with a focus on analytics.
Northwestern’s McCormick School of Engineering runs a 15-month full-time Master of Science in Analytics for students with an ambition to lead teams and projects. (Total tuition: $59,000.)
Admission criteria: Recent graduates and professionals from engineering, science, statistics, or business backgrounds. A minimum GPA of 3 in undergraduation, three letters of recommendation, TOEFL and GMAT/GRE scores.
Curriculum highlights: Four courses per quarter with industry projects, eight-month practicum project, and 10-week capstone design project.
Career support: Northwestern’s job placement resources help graduates find jobs in top data-savvy organizations.
Other courses: Through its School of Professional Studies, Northwestern conducts a flexible “Master of Science in Information Systems: Analytics and Business Intelligence Concentration” that has a blend of online and on-campus courses. Graduates acquire the skills to development and manage software projects.
Purdue Krannert School’s MBA with Business Analytics Concentration (11 months) is aimed at management students who wish to become expert analytics consultants. Purdue also conducts a Master’s in Science in Business Analytics and Information Management (11 months) for senior professionals. (Tuition: $46,000.)
Admission criteria: For MBA-BA, a bachelor’s degree, two recommendations, and GMAT/GRE and TOEFL/IELTS/PTE scores. For MS, four-year bachelor’s degree or equivalent and GMAT/GRE scores.
Curriculum highlights: For MBA, five courses that build background in analytics, two recommended foundation courses, and two electives from the business analytics track, and professional leadership program. For MS, core courses in technology, communication, foundational course, electives on information management and analytics, and immersion electives.
Career support: Krannert’s professional development includes leadership coursework, one-on-one counselling, and alumni mentoring.
University of Minnesota
UMinn Carlson School’s one-year, full-time Master of Science in Business Analytics, described as “fluff-free and intensive,” focuses on management fundamentals and advanced methods in analytics. (Full-time tuition fee: $58,500. Part-time: $55,350.)
Admission criteria: Undergraduate degree in business, economics, statistics, engineering, mathematics, computer science, etc., proficiency in computer programming, semester college-level calculus course with at least grade C, work experience strongly preferred, though not required.
Curriculum highlights: The curriculum combines business knowledge, technical skills, and data analysis. Experiential learning modules help apply the skills.
Career support: Career services include coaching, workshops, company information sessions, and on-campus interviews.
Other courses: Carlson also offers a part-time, three-year MSBA for working professionals.
Indiana University Bloomington
Indiana’s Kelly School integrates data analytics with consulting projects, corporate visits, networking opportunities, and career coaching in its two-year MBA: Business Analytics Major. (Tuition: $49,000/year.)
Admission criteria: Penchant for mathematics, statistics, modeling or information systems, bachelor’s degree, GRE/GMAT scores, and TOEFL/IELTS scores less than two years old.
Curriculum highlights: Kelly’s “Academies concept” teaches students to apply their new skills in their post-MBA career. Students select from one of six Academies in the first year, based on their career goals, and one more in the second year.
Career support: Career coaches help international students tell their own personal story and highlight their strategic advantages to recruiters.
Other courses: Kelly’s 15-month “Online Master of Science in Business Analytics” starts with an on-campus “Connect Week.” Most students join the course with at least two years of work experience.
Duke Fuqua’s 10-month Master of Quantitative Management focuses on analytics strategies and tools within a selected industry, such as finance. (Tuition: $65,000.)
Admission criteria: Four-year undergraduate degree in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, business, or economics, good quant scores in standardized tests, TOEFL/IELTS, PTE scores, and relevant work experience.
Curriculum: The curriculum emphasizes the technical aspect (learning about tools that classify data), the functional aspect (acquiring analytical experience in an industry), and the critical thinking and communication aspect (asking the right questions and presenting clear solutions).
Career: Job search resources include career coaching, workshops, webinars, networking, and recruiting events.
University of Chicago
Chicago’s Master of Science in Analytics is a 12-month, full-time program for future analytics leaders. (Tuition: $4,225/course.)
Admission criteria: The MScA is aimed at BS graduates in science or social science and early-career/mid-career professionals who wish to pursue a career in analytics. Requirements: TOEFL/IELTS score, recommendation letters.
Curriculum highlights: The emphasis is on core tools, methodologies, and applications, including risk analysis. Three-quarters of the program is spent on a capstone project. Short courses in R, Hadoop, Python, etc., are available.
Career support: Two career fairs—in autumn and spring—are conducted. Other networking events are held throughout the year.
University of Rochester
Rochester’s Simon Business School runs a full-time Master of Science in Business Analytics with an 11-month program with no internship and a 17-month program with a summer internship. (Tuition: $63,000.)
Admission criteria: Prior undergraduate/graduate coursework (especially business, accounting, and mathematics), and GMAT/GRE and TOEFL/IELTS scores. Work experience (including internships), career goals, and motivation evaluated.
Curriculum highlights: One-on-one attention and hands-on approach, blend of core courses, core-curricular events (workshops and competitions), career development programs, and networking opportunities.
Career support: Resources include an online career readiness program, mock-interview workshop, and global career fair.
Other Top Analytics Programs
University of Florida: School-Warrington College of Business. Degree-MS in Information Systems and Operations Management: Business Intelligence and Analytics Specialization. Curriculum-Stats, quantitative analysis, information systems and management. Tuition/year-$30,000.
University of Virginia: School-McIntire School of Commerce. Degree-Master of Science in Commerce: Business Analytics Track (10 months). Curriculum-Management, strategy, analytics tech and practices, advanced quantitative analysis. Tuition-$37,000.
North Carolina State University: School-Institute for Advanced Analytics. Degree-MS in Analytics (10 months). Curriculum-Mathematics; statistical techniques; analytics tools, methods, applications; analytics practicum. Tuition-$41,500.
Besides, Rutgers University conducts full-time and part-time master’s courses in analytics. The University of California-Davis has a 10-month course. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s Lally School also offers an MS in Business Analytics.
Part-time / Online / Blended courses in Analytics
Texas A&M University: MS in Analytics (part-time, with evening and distance-learning options)
Columbia University: MS in Applied Analytics (blended course)
New York University (NYU): MS in Business Analytics (blended)
Notre Dame University: MS in Business Analytics (part-time)
Boston University: Online MS in Applied Business Analytics Management (online)
University of Iowa: MS in Business Analytics (part-time, with classes on weeknights)
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