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School of Business launches major, concentration in business analytics

Monday, September 12, 2016

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas School of Business will begin offering both a major and a concentration in business analytics for undergraduate students this fall.

The new program is designed to prepare students with the knowledge, skills and experience to create and manage big-data initiatives. Graduates of the program will be able to analyze data and use the findings to guide organizational decision-making.

“Our corporate partners tell us that industries are hungry for business analytics professionals, and we’re excited to fill this talent gap,” said Interim Dean Jim Guthrie. “This new undergraduate major in business analytics is the only one in the Big 12 and one of the only ones in the entire region. We look forward to leveraging our strengths in undergraduate education with this new academic program.”

Students in the program will gain exposure to applied areas, such as information systems, accounting, finance, marketing and supply chain management, through specific electives.

Chris Claterbos, director of business analytics programs and information systems and business analytics lecturer at the School of Business, led the efforts to bring the major to KU. He has more than 40 years of experience in the industry and spent nine months researching the demand for a business analytics curriculum.

“Adding the business analytics program to the School of Business allows us to educate the next generation of business leaders with the requisite skills to provide data-driven insights to guide businesses,” Claterbos said. “It can be transformational for the future of the businesses in Kansas, the region and the country.”

The major consists of 5 three-credit-hour required core courses in the information systems area and 2 three-credit-hour electives. The elective courses are included in the information systems, marketing and supply chain management areas.

The program also includes a capstone course in which students will work with business partners to solve data-related challenges.

The business analytics concentration received approval in May 2016, which gave a group of 19 business graduates who had taken the required classes the option of adding the concentration to their degree immediately.

More information about the major and concentration can be found on the business school’s website.

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