Data is growing in complexity and volume, leaving organizations overwhelmed and scrambling to find the sophisticated tools and techniques needed to harness its value. Demand for high-level experts who can not only manage data, but also leverage it to provide actionable insights, has surged to unprecedented levels.
To help address the growing demand, Western Governors University (WGU), parent university of WGU Tennessee, has launched a new Master of Science Data Analytics (MSDA) degree. Designed in collaboration with industry experts, the MSDA program provides experienced professionals with the advanced training they need to grow their careers and tackle the most complex challenges posed by big data.
“Big data is becoming an increasingly important field, especially in Tennessee,” said Dr. Kimberly K. Estep, chancellor of WGU Tennessee. “The tech industry has seen substantial growth the past several years, and with that growth comes a need for a more qualified workforce. This master’s degree program is another example of how committed we are to preparing Tennesseans to meet that demand.”
The MSDA, offered through WGU’s College of Information Technology, focuses on both data management and analysis, with coursework structured around data mining, manipulation, interpretation, programming, and communication/visualization. The online, competency-based program builds on students’ existing knowledge of data management and analysis, helping them earn Oracle SQL Expert, Base SAS, and Business Analyst with SAS certifications while earning their degree.
Students in the MSDA Program will have access to all of the advanced statistical and data mining software they will need in an online sandbox environment, enabling them to complete hands-on exercises and labs. Tuition for the program covers industry-standard tools like R, Python, SAS, Tableau, MySQL, and Excel, which can be accessed on demand through the WGU student portal.
“Organizations are being inundated with unprecedented quantities of data, driving the need for highly qualified professionals to manage and interpret it in ways that enable positive change,” said Dr. Myles Vogel, national director of WGU’s College of IT. “We’ve worked closely with industry experts to design an MSDA program that will provide our students with the critical skills and certifications they will need to make a real impact in the workplace.”
The MSDA, like all WGU programs, is online and competency-based, which allows working professionals to apply what they already know to move more quickly through their coursework. WGU’s competency-based model allows students to study and learn on their own schedules, completing courses as soon as they demonstrate proficiency in the subject matter. Along with affordable tuition of about $6,000 per year, WGU’s model provides the flexibility to earn an accredited degree on a busy schedule.
For more information about this new degree program, go to http://www.wgu.edu/online_it_degrees/data_analytics_master_degree?refer_id=19979.
WGU Tennessee is an online, nonprofit, competency-based university established to expand Tennesseans’ access to higher education throughout the state. Formed through a partnership between the state of Tennessee and nationally recognized Western Governors University, WGU Tennessee is open to all qualified Tennessee residents. The university offers more than 50 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in the high-demand career fields of business, K-12 teacher education, information technology, and health professions, including nursing.
Degrees are granted under the accreditation of Western Governors University, which is accredited through the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). Teachers College programs are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).*
In addition to WGU Tennessee, there are five other WGU state-based, state-endorsed universities: WGU Indiana, established in June 2010; WGU Washington, established in April 2011; WGU Texas, established in August 2011; WGU Missouri, established in February 2013; and WGU Nevada, established in June 2015.
For more information, visit the WGU Tennessee website, tennessee.wgu.edu, or call 855-948-8495.