What they teach you in AI and ML distance MBA Program?
Artificial intelligence, machine learning, data science are most touted keywords related to careers in demand. Now you will find every institute, MBA College, university offering courses on these. If one goes through the course curriculum, the subject titles seem to be completely Greek. Understanding them can be a nightmare for a novice. Especially when you are not from statistical or information technology background. Let us try and understand more about it.
Data Science or machine learning is about processing large amounts of data. To store and process data, one will need different technologies like files and databases. Using this data, an important thing machine learning does is ‘prediction’. We know prediction is based on probability theory. At high level, machine learning can help prediction Hence foundation of mathematics and statistics is essential.
Based on this high level understanding, let us delve deeper into distance MBA program syllabus. Every institution and college would offer different course contents based on their focus and specialization. For easy understanding, we can categorize the subjects based on their purpose.
AI and ML distance MBA: Foundation
For data science or Machine learning distance MBA, following subjects are core to the discipline. Here probability and statistical methods are covered. Statistics and mathematics form the foundation for data science and machine learning.
Business Statistics forms the very foundation of data analytics. Statistical measures and analysis reveals lot of intelligent things and patterns hidden inside the data. All predictive models are based on probability theory. Business statistics includes sampling theory, descriptive statistics, probability theory, discrete probability distributions, continuous probability distribution, hypothesis testing, inferential statistics, liner regression, comparison of two populations, analysis of variance etc.
Many calculations involve linear algebra and operations on matrices to solve complex equations in multiple variables. Typically business mathematics covers straight line and applications, non-liner functions, differentiation, partial differentiation, integration, linear algebra, matrices and determinants.
AI and ML distance MBA : Data engineering
Data science in any distance MBA program would two parts: data engineering and data analytics. Data engineering focusses on reading and transforming data read from various sources. These sources are files, databases, datawarehouse, social media, website, excel spreadsheet, streams etc. Subjects in data engineering help to extract, clean, transform and load the data.
Datawarehouse and business intelligence
This subject deals with how to store past data of many years in a special repository called datawarehouse and try to analyze patterns to get insights from the past. This includes
Online transaction processing (OLTP), On-Line Analytical Processing (OLAP), N-dimensional modeling, Star and Snowflakes schema, concept hierarchies, datawarehousing applications and so on.
Big Data: Hadoop
Databases and data warehouse process what is called as structured data. For example, data stored in the form of rows and columns inside RDBMS. However this technology cannot process unstructured data like data stored on social media like Facebook posts, comments etc. A new technology known as Hadoop was introduced so that it can handle and process voluminous unstructured data growing at a very high velocity. It includes Hadoop ecosystem, Map Reduce, Hive, Hbase, PIG, Spark, Sqoop, Kafka etc.
Processing data from social media is very difficult with current popular technologies of RDBMS. The databases which can handle unstructured data like social media posts, comments is named as NO-SQL databases. MongoDB, Couch DB are some of the examples.
AI and ML distance MBA: Data analytics
Data analytics from distance MBA program focusses on identifying patterns and doing predictive analytics. Here focus would be on concepts of machine learning.
Machine learning creates a model which can predict. Past data is used to create/train the predictive model so that it can more accurately predict the future outcomes. The subject includes supervised learning, unsupervised learning, classification, classification trees, market basket analysis, artificial neural networks, clustering, Naïve Bayesian, liner regression, logistic regression etc.
Time Series Analysis
Time series analysis can create a model for the input data and tries to identify patterns for the data which vary with time. For example, price of grains can be predicted based on the past data of the price variation w.r.t. time. Same thing can be done with stock market prices. The subject includes topics like time series, stationary Models, non-stationary models, auto regression, models like ARMA and ARIMA, ARCH and GARCH etc.
AI and ML distance MBA : Data Visualization
Data visualization is one of the key element in data analysis. Here one can study various tools and methods for more appropriate representation of data to support decision making. Data visualization can be done using programming language like R or Python or a software tool like Tableau etc.
AI and ML distance MBA : Specialized Complex data Processing
Some applications may need processing of complex data types like text, natural language, video, images etc. They would demand special processing tools and methods. Some distance MBA in AI and ML programs may cover these specialized subjects too.
AI and ML distance MBA : Domain specific applications
The tools and methodologies created as part of Machine learning or data science are used to solve real business problems. Every domain has its own vocabulary, business processes and business rules. Distance MBA programs definitely cover some of the domain areas. Specific focus would be on application of machine learning to solve domain specific problems.
Key domains where machine learning is getting popular are customer, Social media & Web, supply chain & operations, fraud detection, healthcare, IoT , HR, Cyber security, Energy. So we have the subject with domain name followed by the word analytics like supply chain analytics or HR analytics.
AI and ML distance MBA: Programming Languages
Programming languages which are used in machine learning or data science are special. They allow users to create different statistical models and operations very easilty. R programming and Python programming are very popular in this space.
AI and ML distance MBA : Data science/ machine learning platforms
Programming languages like R or python are used to build customized predictive models. However, there are many platforms (proprietary as well as open source) which allow the user to create models using the graphical interface with clicks and no programming. WEKA, SAS are some of such examples.
Every program in distance MBA in AI and ML is designed with different combinations of subjects based on the focus and market demand. Based on the job role, the specialization would differ. Some of the popular profiles are Data engineer, Data analyst, Data scientist, Project manager. I hope this quick round up of subjects would help you choose appropriate distance MBA course in AI and ML and take your career to the next orbit.