Business Data Analytics M.S.

August 21, 2019
Next Start Date
Per Credit Hour


In the world of “big data,” every organization needs workers who can apply data analytics to enhance decision making and who can understand trends and competitive drivers. According to McKinsey & Company, the demand for people with “deep analytic” skills will exceed the available workers by as much as 60 percent by 2018. The online Master of Science in Business Data Analytics, offered by the College of Business and Economics, equips students to develop expertise in statistical techniques, data mining, utilizing databases, and analytical tools. “Big data” is driving decision-making in businesses and non-profits and creating a demand for workers with data-analytic skills.

U.S. News Best Online Programs 2017


West Virginia University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. The College of Business and Economics is accredited by AACSB - the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.


The admissions committee is looking for applicants who show interest and demonstrate aptitude in quantitative and analytical domains. The committee will take a holistic approach to the admission process and will consider the following factors:


Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with a strong academic record. Degree may be in a number of areas. These are preferred but not required: engineering, business discipline, math, statistics, computer science, management science, most other sciences, operations research, production/operations management, economics, or industrial/organizational psychology; and


Work experience in the following areas: business intelligence, business analytics, data mining, data warehousing, database management, computer science, programming, web development, web analytics, risk management and related fields.


Application Requirements

Applicants must be admitted to WVU as a graduate student using 2159 as the major code.

  1. Enter the WVU Application portal.
  2. Create a username and password.
  3. Once an account has been created, applicants can edit the application at their discretion. Please complete all questions asked.
  4. When selecting a start term, choose ‘fall.’
  5. Upload an up-to-date resume: Your resume should include enough information for the admissions committee to trace your entire professional work history and should indicate any relevant affiliations.
  6. Request 1-3 letters of recommendation through the online portal. Individual letters should not exceed one page: We recommend that your reference provide some information that is not found in the other materials being submitted. Topics with regards to your ability to work with others, your discipline and ambition, leadership potential, etc. should be addressed. Your reference letter(s) should cover aptitudes necessary for your success in the program to which you are applying.
  7. Create a Statement of Purpose (not to exceed one page): Your statement of purpose should be a short, one-page essay which describes your interest in the program, why you wish to pursue the program at WVU, how the program will help you reach your career goals, and any additional information which may be necessary to understanding your candidacy. 
  8. Pay application fee.
  9. Submit application.
  10. Applicants will then need to send their transcripts to WVU's Office of Admissions. If the applicants undergraduate school offers "e-script" (an official electronic copy of transcripts), email the transcripts to This will help expedite the admissions process. If they do not offer this service, please have your official transcripts mailed to: 
    West Virginia University Office of Graduate Admissions and Recruitment 
    PO Box 6510 
    Morgantown, WV 26506-6510
  11. For applicants submitting GMAT/GRE scores, the program GMAT code is C2S-6D-25 or 5904 for GRE. For applicants requesting a GMAT or GRE waiver based on 5 or more years of relevant professional work experience, please indicate request for waiver in your Statement of Purpose. Graduates from the WVU management information systems (MIS) program with a 3.25 or higher GPA are permitted to waive the GMAT.
  12. International Students are required to submit at TOEFL or IELTS score. Required for international students. The College of Business & Economics TOEFL requirement is higher than the University's - applicants must have a TOEFL score of either 580 (paper), 237 (computer), or 92 (Internet-based). If you have taken the IELTS instead of the TOEFL, the minimum score must be 6.5. English language exam scores should be sent to the Office of Admissions, West Virginia University, PO Box 6009, Morgantown, WV 26506-6009.


Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis once all parts of the application are received including transcripts, test scores, and letters of recommendation. Applications received after July 1 will be reviewed based on available space in the class.


Residents Non-Residents
Tuition and Fees

for academic year 2018-2019


Per Credit Hour


Per Credit Hour

Financial aid is available. Students are encouraged to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form to determine their eligibility for federal and state funds as well as scholarships. WVU’s FAFSA Code is 003827.


Students will complete ten courses (30 credit hours). Throughout these courses, students will be exposed to and gain familiarity with the following cutting edge tools: R, Tableau, Python, SQL, Hadoop, Spark, Hive, Shiny, Microsoft Excel, RStudio and GitHub.


GoFirst Cluster is a dedicated WVU MS Business Data Analytics computing resource that allows students to gain experience in a controlled, secure cloud-computing environment. This tool is specifically designed to educate and empower our students with the newest tools and methods that businesses are currently using. Giving them a differentiator when entering the data analytics market. 

Courses will include the following subject matter: 

BUDA 510: Foundations of Business Intelligence: This course provides an overview of the field specifically with impact on business applications of data analytics this includes: introduction to data science for business, big data technologies, prescriptive analytics, among many other topics.


BUDA 515: Ethics and Data Collection: This course introduces fundamental big data and data science technologies with focus on ethical standards pertaining to data collection, storage and security for the organization. Emphasis is placed on collecting information from various sources (web, transactional, social media and data warehouses) with the goal of creating impactful insights for businesses.


BUDA 520: Data Management: Data storage and management is one of the most critical pieces of data analytics. This course allows students the opportunity for hands-on experience with database technologies that are standard across organizations around the world.


BUDA 525 & 530: Business Statistical Methods I & II: This two course sequence provides students training in predictive analytics with focus on communication and impact of results. The ability to describe and predict future trends is critical to an organization’s success using analytics.   


BUDA 535: Business Data Mining: This course places emphasize on using big data technologies and machine learning to create impact for organizations. A focus is given to create insights for critical business problems and add value to the organization by formulating and solving these problems.


BUDA 540: Decision Sciences & Analytics: This course exposes students to the decision sciences analytical tools used to solve business problems. A practical, managerial approach is used, building models that require describing the problem in terms of objectives, decision variables, uncertainties, outcomes, choice criteria, and feasibilities. Students will assess the significance of model outputs, using these to develop managerial insights and action.


BUDA 545: Business Simulation Modeling: This course teaches students to structure business decisions in a manner that clearly identifies relevant variables, parameters and sources of uncertainty, and to build models and design experiments to analyze and simulate the alternatives to arrive at the best business decision. Students will develop the ability to analyze simulation output using appropriate statistical analyses, including stochastic modeling.


BUDA 550: Business Data Visualization: In a modern business, communication with data relies on impactful visualizations. This course gives students the necessary tools to create visuals for data sets of all sizes and structures and focuses on communication of key results. This ability creates organizational value by focusing on business impact not just the analytical business process.


BUDA 555: Business Analytics Practicum: This course provides students the opportunity to apply various business analytic tools to data sets embedded in a business or non-profit organization. Students are expected to complete a final project that integrates across the analytic skills of ethical data collection, data management, basic and advanced statistical analyses, data mining, data modeling, simulation and data visualization using a holistic approach.


Students will come to campus for an orientation at the beginning of the program, and a visit at the end of the program where they will present their capstone projects.

Career Information

Students who graduate from WVU Online with the Business Data Analytics M.S. degree may be prepared for the following careers. These are only a few examples of some of the many opportunities that will be open to you with this degree. Advanced degrees or certifications may be required for some positions.


Quality Control Analyst

Projected Growth: 10-14% *Bright Outlook

Business Intelligence Analyst

Projected Growth: 5-9%

Business Continuity Planner

Projected Growth: 5-9% *Bright Outlook

Business Professor

Projected Growth: 15% or higher *Bright Outlook

Computer Systems Analyst

Projected Growth: 5-9%


Projected Growth: 15% or higher *Bright Outlook

Operations Research Analyst

Projected Growth: 15% or higher *Bright Outlook

Business Operations Specialist

Projected Growth: 5-9% *Bright Outlook

Database Administrator

Projected Growth: 10-14% *Bright Outlook
Information about careers on this list comes from the Occupational Information Network (O*NET) of the U.S. Department of Labor/Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA).