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Masters in Business Analytics Curriculum

The required core courses provide a firm grounding in the use of analytics to identify trends and patterns and to refine and develop strategies suggested by the data. Elective course clusters will enable you to further refine your expertise by applying it to one of six professional arenas, adding value for you and your current or prospective employer.

The program includes 10 courses; specific requirements are:

  • Six core courses, including five applied quantitative analysis and one database management course
  • Four elective, cluster-specific courses

Students with no prior business or statistics background are required to take business fundamentals courses as prerequisites. 

Program Foundation Course (One Course)

We require all Masters of Business Analytics students to have completed statistics level-1 in the past five years. However, students who have never taken statistics before, or took earlier than in the past five years, can take this foundations course at Bentley.


GR521 Managerial Statistics

This course covers basic statistical techniques in a managerial setting, and features case studies and conceptual exercises. Statistical topics include effective use of numerical and graphical summaries, estimation and confidence intervals, hypothesis testing and regression. More advanced topics such as data mining, the Bayesian paradigm and principles of model building, may be encountered during projects.

Required Analytics Courses (six courses)

Please keep in mind, ST635 is the prerequisite of MA710.

CS605 Data Management and Modeling

This course teaches proven techniques for modeling system data requirements and organizing and managing organizational data resources. Students will learn how to discover and document database requirements, model database structures at the logical level, and implement relational databases. Techniques covered in this course include entity-relationship modeling at the conceptual level; and Structured Query Language (SQL) for database definition and data manipulation. The course also reviews emerging data management technologies.

MA610 Optimization and Simulation for Business Decisions

Optimization and simulation methods are being used as effective tools in many environments that involve decision making. This course covers classical and modern optimization techniques used today in a business environment. Specifically, the focus will be on linear and nonlinear programming techniques with applications, as well as elective topics selected from game theory, agent-based modeling, and modern simulation and optimization techniques. Examples of application areas of optimization include portfolio selection in finance, airline crew scheduling in the transportation industry, resource allocation in healthcare industry, and minimizing the cost of an advertising campaign in marketing.

MA611 Time Series Analysis

This courcse examines methods for analyzing time series. In many data modeling situations, observations are collected at different points in time and are correlated. Such time series data cannot typically be modeled using traditional regression analysis methods. This course provides a survey of various time series modeling approaches, including regression, smoothing and decomposition models, Box-Jenkins analysis and its extensions, and other modeling techniques commonly used, such as quantile estimation and value at risk. It makes use of statistical packages such as SAS, JMP, R andor SPSS.

MA710 Data Mining

This course introduces participants to the most recent data-mining techniques, with an emphasis on: (1) getting a general understanding of how the method works, (2) understanding how to perform the analysis using suitable available software, (3) understanding how to interpret the results in a business research context, and (4) developing the capacity to critically read published research articles which make use of the technique. Contents may vary according to the interest of participants. Topics will include decision trees, an introduction to neural nets and to self-organizing (Kohonen) maps, multiple adaptive regression splines (MARS), genetic algorithms, association (also known as market basket) analysis, web mining and text mining, and social networks.

ST625 Quantitative Analysis for Business

This course provides students with an in-depth coverage of simple and multiple linear regression methods and, as time permits, an introduction to the analysis of time series data. Simple and multiple linear regression techniques are covered, including the use of transformations such as squares and logarithms, the modeling of interactions, and how to handle problems resulting from heteroscedasticy and multicollinearity. Issues surrounding outlying and influential observations are also covered. The art and science of model building are demonstrated with the help of cases. Autocorrelation is then considered, and an introduction to the ARIMA modeling of times series is provided. The course makes use of statistical packages such as SAS, JMP, R or SPSS.

ST635 Intermediate Statistical Modeling for Business

This course focuses on statistical modeling situations dependent on multiple variables, as commonly found in many business applications. Typical topics covered are logistic regression, cluster analysis, factor analysis, decision trees, and other multivariate topics as time permits. Applications of these methodologies range from market analytics (e.g., direct mail response and customer segmentation) to finance and health informatics. A central objective of the course is for participants to be able to determine the appropriate multivariate methodology based on the research objectives and available data, carry out the analysis and interpret the results. This course makes use of statistical packages such as SAS, JMP, R or SPSS, along with more specialized software.

Elective Courses (four courses)

Elective course clusters will enable you to further refine your expertise by applying it to one of six professional arenas, adding value for you and your current or prospective employer.

Data Science Cluster

CS603 Object-Oriented Application Development

This course teaches object-oriented programming and development using the Java programming language. Students first gain a solid understanding of programming fundamentals, including control and data structures and the use of built-in classes. This is followed by the study of object-oriented programming concepts and practices, from defining classes and methods to the more advanced object-oriented concepts of inheritance, encapsulation, polymorphism and abstract classes. Students' understanding is reinforced throughout the course through the development of stand-alone applications. No prior knowledge of Java or other programming languages is required.

CS612 Web-Based Application Development

This course provides a hands-on introduction to several tools and technologies that are commonly utilized in developing Web-based applications. The course also considers the impact of these technologies in a business context. Students learn how to develop dynamic, data-driven applications that enable businesses to interact with their customers, employees and suppliers, and provide on-line access to information that supports decision-making. Students enrolling in this course are expected to have basic proficiency in Java, website development, and relational databases.

CS650 Data Management Architectures

The architectures of current database systems are examined in this course. Of particular importance is the examination and comparison of relational database systems, and object-oriented database systems, particularly as they are used as a foundation for large-scale distributed systems. The course covers techniques for developing, designing and managing large corporate database systems, creating and managing logical data models, concurrent processing issues, providing database support for complex transactions, meta-data analysis, and the role of the database administrator.

CS753 Business Intelligence Methods and Technologies

This course expands students’ knowledge and skills gained in database management courses and looks in depth at business intelligence methods and technologies. The course examines the entire business intelligence life cycle, including system architecture design, data processing, modeling, warehousing, online analytical processing and reporting. Case studies of organizations using these technologies to support business intelligence gathering and decision-making are examined. This course also provides hands-on experience with state-of-the-art business intelligence methods and tools.

Economics Cluster

EC611 The Macroeconomics of Financial Markets

This course explores the links between the macroeconomy and financial markets. The course begins by developing a model of the macroeconomy. It will then cover the basic asset valuation models. The remainder of the semester will explore how changes in the macroeconomy affect stock, bond, foreign exchange and derivatives markets, as well as how these markets in turn impact the macroeconomy.

EC631 Market Structure and Firm Strategy

This course examines industry organization and the nature of interfirm rivalry within contemporary market environments. It develops microeconomic tools for determining the degree and nature of competition in an industry. The course presents economic models of market structure and firm behavior to explain industry performance. It analyzes market definition using scale economies, merger activity, entry barriers and cartelization. The course investigates strategic firm behavior within well-defined markets. It addresses competitive strategies such as profit maximization, price discrimination, product differentiation and advertising. This course includes a game theoretical approach to demonstrate firm interdependence. It employs a variety of industry case studies to provide institutional context to the analytical issues.

Finance Cluster

FI623 Investments

This course provides fundamental knowledge in key areas of investments. In particular, the course will focus on portfolio theory, asset pricing, equity valuation, fixed income valuation and risk, and option pricing and strategies.

FI635 Fixed Income Valuation and Strategies

Covers the pricing of fixed income securities, examining topics such as bond mathematics, term structure of interest rates, repurchase agreement market, pricing of default risk in the context of high yield corporate bonds, foreign exchange risk in the context of foreign currency denominated bonds, and pricing pre-payment risk in mortgage-backed securities. More advanced topics include the tools and their application under realistic assumptions in the real world, application of duration and convexity under realistic yield curve assumptions, risk and return in the high yield bond market and related structured products, option-adjusted spread modeling in mortgage backed securities pricing, the mortgage derivatives markets, and foreign currency denominated bond investment. Requires econometric analyses that involve using the resources of the Trading Room. Assigned readings include journal articles from applied academic finance journals and research reports from Wall Street firms.

FI640 Equity Valuation

This course teaches students to value equity securities, starting with the top-down approach and industry analysis/forecasting. It examines valuation theory, models and applications. Students analyze the IPO process to gain a detailed understanding of equity market operation, issues that affect these markets and where they are headed. More advanced topics include the implications of financial statements on cash flow and risk, the exploration of valuing distressed or bankrupt companies, closely held firms, and venture capital situations. The course requires extensive use of applied academic journals, the financial media, and resources available in the Trading Room.

FI645 Derivatives

This course provides materials and projects that will allow students to develop a detailed understanding of the design, mechanics and pricing of derivative securities in risk management. The concept of the law of one price will be stressed and includes the application of the tools and inputs (quantitative techniques as developed in ST 625) necessary to value derivative securities. The mathematical requirements of the course are primarily algebraic, but the student will also need to rely on statistical methods and some calculus. Please note that this is not a survey course. It is an intensive introduction to derivative securities pricing and market mechanics.

Information Management Cluster

GR602 Business Process Management

This course provides a conceptual framework for understanding the fundamentals and characteristics of business processes. To set a solid foundation for accomplishing this aim, it reviews the basics of process analysis and introduces process modeling. Included here are various methods of analyzing, measuring and evaluating processes. With these fundamentals in place, the course explores the concept of the value chain to offer a backdrop for understanding both intra- and interorganizational relationships and the associated dependencies that exist. The last part of the course focuses on how information technology can be used effectively in redesigning processes to improve their overall performance. Students are introduced to the enterprise resource planning system SAP. The course includes assignments, exercises and projects focused on different aspects of business processes.

IPM652 Information Management

The class will provide a managerial perspective on information management in organizations, with emphasis on the relationship between the business and its information systems at strategic, tactical, and operational levels, information impacts on business processes within and between organizations, business intelligence, business analytics and reporting, performance management, quality of data, ethical use of information, data standards, data sharing for business process support, and other current managerially-focused topics. The students will obtain hands-on experience with real-world data and advanced information management and analytics technologies such as SAP BusinessObjects, Lumira, Digital Boardroom, and others.

IPM723 Information Security, Controls and Ethics

This course presents an overview of information security issues that must be addressed by organizations in today's ubiquitously networked environments. Specific coverage will include information security risks and related protection of data, networks and application software. While the primary focus is on how to protect organizational information assets, other topics will include strategic uses of security in business, the impact of security risk on various industries, as well as the security and privacy rights and responsibilities of end users and home computer operators. The course is designed to help students think critically about the local, national and global information security issues in our highly networked society.

IPM755 Special Topics in Information and Process Management

This course focuses on a different information management theme in each semester. Possible themes include inter-organizational information sharing, information ecology, and business intelligence.

Management Cluster

GR603 Leading Responsibly

This course examines the multiple roles of ethical and responsible leadership and the challenges associated with leading organizations and teams in a rapidly changing environment. Through discussion, case analysis, and team-based experiential exercises; students explore the complex issues of responsibly leading and guiding organizations and teams in contemporary society. Focus is placed on the development of the student as evolving leader. Students assess individual strengths and weaknesses as a leader, identify and develop a range of leadership competencies, and then apply these leadership skills to a variety of situations.

MG632 Leading Effective Work Teams

Organizations use a variety of complex work teams to accomplish their objectives. Unfortunately, many organizational teams are not particularly effective. This course is designed to help students lead, participate and work effectively in a variety of team environments -including virtual teams and groups. You will develop a greater understanding of group dynamics, of your own behavior in teams, and team leadership skills. The course is highly experiential and involves working in teams on graded and non-graded assignments. These assignments include team presentations and written and oral analysis.

MG635 Negotiating

This course explores the theory and practice of negotiating, with an emphasis on bargaining within an organizational context. It develops the knowledge of bargaining concepts and models, as well as skills to apply this knowledge in real-life negotiating situations. The courcse uses multiple negotiating case role plays to increase involvement and to deepen understanding of negotiating principles in face-to-face and virtual online negotiating environments.

MG645 Leading Change

This course seeks to improve participant awareness of change dynamics, including: the changing nature of change; understanding the enhanced change complexities in a global, virtual environment, readiness for a change versus continuous change; and the challenge of building change capacity (skills and capabilities). The course focus includes key individual, group and organization-level factors essential for informing leaders and followers as they navigate change efforts in organizations.

Marketing Cluster

MK711 Marketing Research and Analysis

This course focuses on the development of questionnaires and other vehicles for collecting marketing data, the methodology for analyzing these data (with the use of sophisticated statistical software), and reaching conclusions based on the analyses. Real-world questionnaires and real-world data are utilized.

MK725 E-Marketing

This course builds critical skills for individuals who will practice the art and science of Internet marketing in the future. It covers the important frameworks, principles and contexts in this domain that are likely to endure – for example, auctions, customer relationship management, privacy, the communication e-mix, and channel adaptation and coordination.

MK726 Customer Data Analysis and Relationship Marketing

This course focuses on the analysis of customer data as the primary input to developing strategies for relationship marketing. It examines customer acquisition and retention, segmentation, customer loyalty, lifetime-value analysis of the customer, and direct-response modeling – all as part of customer relationship marketing strategy. Hands-on experience in data analysis receives heavy emphasis.

MK758 Enhancing Creativity

This class will focus on the nature of creativity and the creative process. We will discuss several definitions and theories of creativity, and apply these theories to enhance your own creativity. Several techniques will help you to recognize and remove barriers to creative thinking. We will apply these techniques to develop creative approaches to business and marketing cases and your own business and academic problems. While the focus of the class is on individual creativity, we will also discuss the pros and cons of team creativity and apply techniques to improve team efforts. Organizational creativity and implementing creative solutions will also be covered.

Additional Elective Courses

Please contact Academic Advising Office for requirements on the internship. International students must contact Center for International Students and Scholars for corresponding CPT/OPT process and restrictions.

HF730 Visualizing Information

This course examines the theory and practice of designing dynamic visualizations that clarify thinking, facilitate problem-solving, and foster creativity. This course helps students to harness their visual and creative potential and to display this potential in the visual medium. In practice, students will learn to make large collections of verbal and numerical data accessible through carefully crafted visual displays. The unique strengths and weaknesses of both words and visuals are analyzed. Advancing from this analysis, the course helps students design a visual-verbal system where the strengths of one medium support the weaknesses of the other. This complementary system more fully integrates visual and verbal information, thereby dramatically improving the reader's understanding and retention of the communication design.

ST701 Internship in Business Data Analysis

This course provides an opportunity for students to apply quantitative and data analysis skills in a live employment environment, serving as a quantitative analyst. With help from the internship coordinator, students identify a suitable internship and meet regularly with the internship coordinator. Students prepare a paper that discusses the internship experience and demonstrates at least one specific case analyzed during the internship period. The course can be used either as a Business Analytics concentration elective with permission of the Business Analytics coordinator, or as a Distribution elective.