Loyola University Chicago

Quinlan School of Business

Business Data Analytics program highlighted in Crain's Chicago Business Roundtable Discussion

Business Data Analytics program highlighted in Crain

Four Chicago-area universities discussed programs that help professionals take the next step in their careers.

"The need for business professionals who understand how to interpret data is growing everywhere," says Pamela McCoy, associate dean, in a Crain's Chicago Business roundtable discussion.

The roundtable featured leaders from four Chicago-area universities discussing innovative programs for professionals.

McCoy focused on Quinlan's MS in Business Data Analytics and how the one-year program is preparing skill upgraders and career changers to be data-driven business leaders.

Below are highlights from McCoy's comments for the roundtable.

What distinguishes Quinlan's MSBDA program

McCoy identified several distinguishing features of Quinlan's business data analytics program:

  • One-year program
  • Taught by leading academics and practitioners
  • Hands-on, experiential client projects
  • Builds both critical analysis and the technical skills needed to build models, work with databases, perform data visualization, write code, and analyze data statistically
  • Cohort model, where students take first six foundational courses together as a group and build strong professional relationships
  • Night and weekend classes compatible with students' work and life obligations

How to pick an MSBDA program

"The best way to evaluate a program is to talk to faculty and students, and even visit campus if time allows," says McCoy. "These personal interactions will give potential students a strong sense of the program and if it’s the right fit."

For a business analytics program, students should consider if the program provides the skills needed and an opportunity to apply them.

According to McCoy, too many other programs teach a skill, but don’t have the structure to help students retain and apply it beyond one course. In contrast, courses in Quinlan's MSBDA program build on each other and culminate in a capstone real-world consulting project that brings all the learned skills together.

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