Big Data Mastery

Universities ramping up Data Science & Analytics Courses: Do they have enough real world experience?

Analysing large data sets— also called Big Data Analytics—will become a key basis of competition, underpinning new waves of innovation and digital transformation.

However, companies and policy makers must tackle significant hurdles to fully capture big data’s potential – including a shortage of skilled analysts and managers. The 2015 BigInsights Big Data Analytics Study found that “Lack of Analytical Skills” is the top barrier to adoption in enterprises.

The United States alone faces a shortage of 140,000 to 190,000 people with analytical expertise and 1.5 million managers and analysts with the skills to understand and make decisions based on the analysis of Big Data. These shortages are looked on as potential opportunities to capitalise on the industry requirements and to fill this gap, universities globally are offering masters level courses in data sciences and analytics.

Some of the top US universities such as Columbia University, University of California, Berkeley; Carnegie Mellon and many more are now offering Masters level courses in this domain. (see list –

Australian Masters level Data Science/Analytics courses.

This trend is replicated in Australia with more than 10 universities offering Data Science/Analytics Masters course. See table below for details about these courses:

State – wise List of institutes in Australia Program Name Duration Fees (AUD)*
 VICTORIA RMIT University Master of Analytics
  • Full-time 2 years,
  • Part-time 4 years
Deakin University Master of Business Analytics
  • Full-time 1.5 years,
  • Part time – 3 years
Calculate based on subjects
University of Melbourne Master of Business Analytics
  • One year; Full Time
La Trobe University Master of Business Analytics
  • 2 years’ full time, or part-time equivalent.
 NSW University of Technology, Sydney Master of Data Science and Innovation
  • 2 years – Full Time
University of Sydney Master of Data Science
  • One-year full time
  • 2 years’ part time
University of Western Sydney Master of Data Science
  • 2 years’ full time
30,000 (based on 100 credits)
Other University of South Australia Master of Data Science
  • 2 years’ full time
*BigInsights estimates as per university websites                    

Universities can teach broad inter-discipline skills (i.e. maths, statistics, computer science and business subjects) which are needed for Data Science and Analytics professionals.

With Australia 12-24 months behind US in industry adoption of Data Science and Analytics, the challenge for Australian universities is access to teaching staff with industry experience and real world detailed case studies. It is important that potential students consider this before they invest anywhere from $25-65K and 1-2 years of their time.

Depending on person’s life stage and career ambitions there are other alternatives to gain knowledge and experience in this area. Online courses from Udemy, Coursera, Simplilearn and many others can fill in their gaps in their knowledge.

BigInsights Academy also runs executive programs to help enterprise skill up their entire teams on different aspects of Big Data and Analytics. We create bespoke programs combining onsite and online training to suit enterprises at various stages of their data driven innovation journey. Do contact us if you are interested to know more.