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MS in Business Analytics

A group of students at computers in the the CME Lab.

The UIC Liautaud MSBA Prepares You for Today’s Hottest Careers

From sales figures and account balances to photos, customer reviews and social media comments, data is waiting to be collected, organized and analyzed. Every industry is using technology to generate new data and they need data analysts to interpret that data to understand customers, develop new products and cut costs.

The MS in Business Analytics provides a holistic approach to the field as students develop expertise in data management, machine learning and predictive analytics, all while building a strong background in business skills. Students gain the skillset necessary to analyze large datasets and generate insights through techniques in data visualization, statistical modeling and data mining. The program curriculum emphasizes industry experience, exposure and collaboration across a variety of analytics projects.

Important Dates

International Applicants

Domestic Applicants


Fast-paced program
The 32-credit hour program can be completed in one year of full-time study (or more than one year of part-time study).

Cutting-edge curriculum
The MSBA curriculum includes courses covering current topics on business intelligence, applied statistics, data mining, machine learning, text analytics, data visualization, optimization, 'big' data analytics. The curriculum integrates knowledge and training on technical topics with business applications and functions, such as finance and marketing. to understand analytics strategy and practice in organizations. Various analytics-related business electives allow students to focus on specific business areas.

Exposure to technology
Through intense coursework, you will gain experience in using tools such as SAS, R, Python, IBM/SPSS, Hadoop, Rapid-Miner, Tableau and others. With hands-on projects, you can play with live data from digital marketing and social media, finance, accounting, supply chain management, healthcare and e-commerce. 

Experiential learning
The MSBA includes a capstone experience where students work with a client organization to framing analytics strategies and develope analytics solutions.

Who should enroll?
Any student interested in harnessing diverse data for business excellence. We encourage applicants from the sciences, business, engineering, humanities and healthcare who want to combine skills in data management, technology and analytics to create business solutions. Working professionals looking to develop newer capabilities in business intelligence and analytics, business professionals and entrepreneurs who want analytical skills to become data-driven decision makers as well as undergraduates seeking specialized knowledge and training to work in data rich environments are all encouraged to apply.

More Information

  • For a full list of requirements including prerequisites, visit the UIC Catalog

  • Full a full list of courses offered, visit the Course Catalog

  • For tuition and fees information, visit the Tuition page

Program Outcomes

The UIC Liautaud Master of Science in Business Analytics helps you develop skills and training to work in data-rich environments, and enables you to develop capability in business intelligence and analytics. After completing the program, you will be able to bring together information technology, data science and business so that you will be able to analyze communicate the value of data.

Career Outcomes: Career opportunities in business analytics abound, and promise to grow exponentially for the next decade. The program prepares students for roles such as business analyst, data analyst, quantitative analyst, data scientist, digital marketing analyst, supply chain analyst, risk analyst, product manager for information and analytics-driven organizations, as well as managerial roles leading to chief data officers, chief analytics officers and chief information officers. 

Almost 90% of recent graduates (2016-2017) had been employed within six months of graduation, with 55% completing an internship during their time in the program. The average starting for the these MSBA graduates was $83,700.

View Degree Requirements

Prerequisite Courses
Technical Prerequisites
Knowledge of business statistics at the level of IDS371 or IDS570 or equivalent.
Knowledge of a programming language, like C, C++, Java or Python at the level of IDS400/IDS401 or the equivalent.
Knowledge of relational databases and querying using SQL at the level of IDS410 or the equivalent.
Business Prerequisites
Two introductory courses in any two functional areas of business. Each course may be waived based on equivalent prior course work or appropriate work experience in the functional area.
Introduction to Operations Management
Introduction to Financial Accounting
Introduction to Corporate Finance
Introduction to Marketing
Prerequisite courses do not count toward the mininum degree requirement of 32 hours.
Required Courses
Advanced Database Management
Data Mining for Business
Analytics Strategy and Practice
Statistical Models and Methods for Business Analytics
Select 16 hours of electives from the following list, with at least 8 hours of analytics electives. Students may choose all 16 hours from analytics electives, or choose up to 8 hours of business analytics electives. Electives must be approved by the director of graduate studies. Based on the student's background and interests, other analytics-related courses may be taken with the advice and approval of the director of graduate studies.
Analytics Electives
Optimization Models and Methods
Analytics for Big Data
Social Media and Network Analysis
Advanced Text Analytics for Business
Business Data Visualization
Advanced Predictive Models and Applications for Business Analytics
Special Topics in Information and Decision Sciences
Business Electives
Analytics-related business electives approved by the director of graduate studies, such as the following:
Financial Statement Analysis
Theory and Structure of Options and Futures Markets
Audit and Control of Information Systems
Supply Chain Management
Risk Management
Consumer Behavior
Marketing Analytics

Program Faculty

Canan Adelman, Adjunct Lecturer (Visiting Lecturer)

Canan Adelman

Visiting Assistant Professor
Head and shoulders photo of Sid Bhattacharyya

Sid Bhattacharyya

Professor of Information and Decision Sciences
Head and shoulders photo of Kyle Cheek

Kyle Cheek

Clinical Assistant Professor of Information and Decision Sciences
Varshini Varanasi headshot

My passion for data and insights began during high school when I was working on a project on the milk supply pattern of my locality which encompassed thousands of households. My curiosity got the best of me, fast forward a few years and I ended up pursuing a Masters in Economics, wherein my understanding of data driven business grew and I also learned its immense importance. My transition to analytics as a whole has been a gradual and smooth ride, influenced by my work at Capgemini where I was a Consultant with Data Science and Analytics team. UIC provided me the best possible MSBA program which matched my background and catered to my requirements. It helped me develop sound technical skills along with knowledge of business concepts. UIC has definitely helped me kick start my journey in the world of analytics.

Varshini Varanasi
Class of '18

Special Topics

Analytics special topics (IDS 594), updated regularly:

  • Cognitive Computing and Analytics with IBM Watson
  • Health Information Management & Analytics
  • Advanced Analytics Using SAS
  • Machine Learning Applications Using R
  • Machine Learning Applications with Python
  • Data science for Online Customer Analytics

Analytics Electives

Other analytics electives:

  • IDS 476: Business Forecasting Using Time-Series Methods
  • IDS 564: Social Media and Network Analysis
  • IDS 566: Advanced Text Analytics
  • IDS 567: Data Visualization
  • IDS 576 Advanced Predictive Models

Business Electives

Various courses based on individual interest, such as:

  • IDS 552: Supply Chain Management
  • IDS 558: Revenue Management
  • IDS 540: Marketing Analytics
  • ACTG 516: Financial Statement Analyses
  • FIN 510:  Investments
  • FIN 516: Options & Futures

Business Analytics Organization (BAO) Student Chapter

The BAO is a student organization that fosters interaction and networking with industry experts and leaders in the field of analytics and data science. Workshops and speaker series expose students to different technologies and application areas.

Preferred admission and STEM-designated program

Outstanding UIC and UIUC undergraduates with a GPA of 3.00 in their undergraduate degree in IDS can be admitted into the MSBA program without a GMAT or GRE score.

The MSBA is a STEM designated program. International students are allowed work experience on the OPT STEM extension.

Top Recruiters

Some of our top recruiters for internships, co-ops, and placements:

  • AArete
  • Accenture
  • Aetna
  • Amazon
  • Assurant Solutions
  • Blue Cross & Blue Shield
  • CAN Insurance
  • Capgemini
  • Capital One
  • Cardinal Health
  • Caterpillar
  • CME Group
  • Critical Mass
  • Crowe Horwath
  • CVS Health
  • Deloitte
  • Discover Financial Services
  • Dyson Technical Solutions
  • eBay
  • Enova International
  • Facebook
  • Flexon Technologies
  • Foresight ROI
  • Grainger
  • IBM (Poland)
  • IRI
  • KPMG
  • McKinsey & Company
  • Motorola Solutions
  • Mu Sigma
  • Oracle
  • Paypal
  • PwC
  • Qualcomm
  • Remedy Analytics
  • Rise Interactive
  • SAP America
  • Shelby Group
  • Siemens
  • SourceLink
  • Starbucks
  • Teksystems
  • Thompson-Reuters
  • TransUnion
  • Tredence
  • United Health Group
  • US Foods
  • Verizon
  • Wavicle Data Solutions
  • Webb Mason Analytics

Analytics Workshops

Analytics workshops are organized by the Business Aanalytics Organization on a host of industry relevant topics. These hands-on workshops equip students with the latest technology, giving them an edge on the job market.

  • IBM Watson Analytics, February 24, 2017
  • SAS advanced Analytics, January 27-28, 2017
  • Neural Networks with Python, October 21, 2016  
  • Hadoop Datamarts & Appln, September, 2016
  • Deep learning using Python, November, 2016


Analytics Industry Speaker Series

The Analytics Speaker Series provides a platform for students to meet professionals in their field, discuss trends and industry developments, and learn about career opportunities.

  • Sheila Talton, CEO of Gray Matter Analytics, February 10, 2017
  • Brian Lange, Partner and Data Scientist, Datascope Analytics, September 16, 2016


Frontiers in Analytics - CRIM

The Center for Research in Information Management (CRIM) held its annual symposium on “Frontiers in Analytics.” The event featured:

  • presentations and panel discussion
  • networking with academic researchers and industry leaders
  • CRIM Student Analytics Challenge
  • topics on emerging analytics capabilities

For more information about CRIM, visit this page.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between the MIS and the MSBA?

The Master of Science in Management Information Systems focuses on information technology, software and systems, and prepares students for jobs as developers, business analysts, project managers, and technology consultants.

The Master of Science in Business Analytics trains students to work in data-rich environments. It enables students to solve real business problems through organization, analysis, and interpretation of data. This course prepares students for jobs as data analysts, data scientists, and domain analysts (e.g., financial analyst, healthcare analyst, or risk analyst).

What are the prerequisites?

The program offers prerequisites to equip students with the necessary business and technical background. Prerequisites do not count toward the 32-credit program requirement.  Technical prerequisites cover essential knowledge of databases, programming, and statistics. Students without prior business education or experience are required to take two courses in core business areas like finance, marketing, accounting, or operations. Prerequisite courses may be waived based on equivalent prior coursework or work experience in a functional area. For a full list of requirements including prerequisites, see "View Degree Requirements" above, or visit the UIC Catalog.

Is the MSBA a STEM designated course?

The MS Business Analytics program offered by the Liautaud School of Business is a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) course.

In which semesters can I start the program?

The MS Business Analytics program admits students in both the fall and spring semesters. Students may choose to enter in the summer semester to take prerequisite courses, including programming, database, and business prerequisites. Students seeking summer admission are encouraged to apply early.

Do I need an undergraduate degree with a quantitative or technological focus in order to be accepted into the program?

Students from a variety of backgrounds (including tech and business) enroll for the MSBA program. Through coursework, students develop the technical and business skills required to successfully complete the program. We assess candidates to provide each individual with prerequisite courses based on their background and work experience.