Formulate data questions, explore and visualize large datasets, and inform strategic decisions.
In this Specialization, you’ll learn to frame business challenges as data questions. You’ll use powerful tools and methods such as Excel, Tableau, and MySQL to analyze data, create forecasts and models, design visualizations, and communicate your insights. In the final Capstone Project, you’ll apply your skills to explore and justify improvements to a real-world business process.
The Capstone Project focuses on optimizing revenues from residential property, and Airbnb, our Capstone’s official Sponsor, provided input on the project design. Airbnb is the world’s largest marketplace connecting property-owner hosts with travelers to facilitate short-term rental transactions. The top 10 Capstone completers each year will have the opportunity to present their work directly to senior data scientists at Airbnb live for feedback and discussion.
Course 1: Business Metrics for Data-Driven Companies - Offered by Duke University. In this course, you will learn best practices for how to use data analytics to make any company more competitive ... Enroll for free.
Course 2: Mastering Data Analysis in Excel - Offered by Duke University. Important: The focus of this course is on math - specifically, data-analysis concepts and methods - not on Excel ... Enroll for free.
Course 3: Data Visualization and Communication with Tableau - Offered by Duke University. One of the skills that characterizes great business data analysts is the ability to communicate practical ... Enroll for free.
Course 4: Managing Big Data with MySQL - Offered by Duke University. This course is an introduction to how to use relational databases in business analysis. You will learn how ... Enroll for free.
Course 5: Increasing Real Estate Management Profits: Harnessing Data Analytics - Offered by Duke University. In this final course you will complete a Capstone Project using data analysis to recommend a method for ... Enroll for free.
This course is an introduction to how to use relational databases in business analysis. You will learn how relational databases work, and how to use entity-relationship diagrams to display the structure of the data held within them. This knowledge will help you understand how data needs to be collected in business contexts, and help you identify features you want to consider if you are involved in implementing new data collection efforts. You will also learn how to execute the most useful query and table aggregation statements for business analysts, and practice using them with real databases. No more waiting 48 hours for someone else in the company to provide data to you – you will be able to get the data by yourself!
By the end of this course, you will have a clear understanding of how relational databases work, and have a portfolio of queries you can show potential employers. Businesses are collecting increasing amounts of information with the hope that data will yield novel insights into how to improve businesses. Analysts that understand how to access this data – this means you! – will have a strong competitive advantage in this data-smitten business world.
One of the skills that characterizes great business data analysts is the ability to communicate practical implications of quantitative analyses to any kind of audience member. Even the most sophisticated statistical analyses are not useful to a business if they do not lead to actionable advice, or if the answers to those business questions are not conveyed in a way that non-technical people can understand.
In this course you will learn how to become a master at communicating business-relevant implications of data analyses. By the end, you will know how to structure your data analysis projects to ensure the fruits of your hard labor yield results for your stakeholders. You will also know how to streamline your analyses and highlight their implications efficiently using visualizations in Tableau, the most popular visualization program in the business world. Using other Tableau features, you will be able to make effective visualizations that harness the human brain’s innate perceptual and cognitive tendencies to convey conclusions directly and clearly. Finally, you will be practiced in designing and persuasively presenting business “data stories” that use these visualizations, capitalizing on business-tested methods and design principles.
Important: The focus of this course is on math - specifically, data-analysis concepts and methods - not on Excel for its own sake. We use Excel to do our calculations, and all math formulas are given as Excel Spreadsheets, but we do not attempt to cover Excel Macros, Visual Basic, Pivot Tables, or other intermediate-to-advanced Excel functionality.
This course will prepare you to design and implement realistic predictive models based on data. In the Final Project (module 6) you will assume the role of a business data analyst for a bank, and develop two different predictive models to determine which applicants for credit cards should be accepted and which rejected. Your first model will focus on minimizing default risk, and your second on maximizing bank profits. The two models should demonstrate to you in a practical, hands-on way the idea that your choice of business metric drives your choice of an optimal model.
The second big idea this course seeks to demonstrate is that your data-analysis results cannot and should not aim to eliminate all uncertainty. Your role as a data-analyst is to reduce uncertainty for decision-makers by a financially valuable increment, while quantifying how much uncertainty remains. You will learn to calculate and apply to real-world examples the most important uncertainty measures used in business, including classification error rates, entropy of information, and confidence intervals for linear regression.
All the data you need is provided within the course, all assignments are designed to be done in MS Excel, and you will learn enough Excel to complete all assignments. The course will give you enough practice with Excel to become fluent in its most commonly used business functions, and you’ll be ready to learn any other Excel functionality you might need in the future (module 1).
The course does not cover Visual Basic or Pivot Tables and you will not need them to complete the assignments. All advanced concepts are demonstrated in individual Excel spreadsheet templates that you can use to answer relevant questions. You will emerge with substantial vocabulary and practical knowledge of how to apply business data analysis methods based on binary classification (module 2), information theory and entropy measures (module 3), and linear regression (module 4 and 5), all using no software tools more complex than Excel.
In this course, you will learn best practices for how to use data analytics to make any company more competitive and more profitable. You will be able to recognize the most critical business metrics and distinguish them from mere data.
You’ll get a clear picture of the vital but different roles business analysts, business data analysts, and data scientists each play in various types of companies. And you’ll know exactly what skills are required to be hired for, and succeed at, these high-demand jobs.
Finally, you will be able to use a checklist provided in the course to score any company on how effectively it is embracing big data culture. Digital companies like Amazon, Uber and Airbnb are transforming entire industries through their creative use of big data. You’ll understand why these companies are so disruptive and how they use data-analytics techniques to out-compete traditional companies.
In this final course you will complete a Capstone Project using data analysis to recommend a method for improving profits for your company, Watershed Property Management, Inc. Watershed is responsible for managing thousands of residential rental properties throughout the United States. Your job is to persuade Watershed’s management team to pursue a new strategy for managing its properties that will increase their profits. To do this, you will: (1) Elicit information about important variables relevant to your analysis; (2) Draw upon your new MySQL database skills to extract relevant data from a real estate database; (3) Implement data analysis in Excel to identify the best opportunities for Watershed to increase revenue and maximize profits, while managing any new risks; (4) Create a Tableau dashboard to show Watershed executives the results of a sensitivity analysis; and (5) Articulate a significant and innovative business process change for Watershed based on your data analysis, that you will recommend to company executives.
Airbnb, our Capstone’s official Sponsor, provided input on the project design. The top 10 Capstone completers each year will have the opportunity to present their work directly to senior data scientists at Airbnb live for feedback and discussion.
"Note: Only learners who have passed the four previous courses in the specialization are eligible to take the Capstone."
Start your review of Excel to MySQL: Analytic Techniques for Business
While the instructor does explain the subject well, there is a big gap between the material covered in the lectures and the material required for the assignments and quizzes. The first course in this certificate was mostly linear in progression (without...
While the instructor does explain the subject well, there is a big gap between the material covered in the lectures and the material required for the assignments and quizzes. The first course in this certificate was mostly linear in progression (without too many gaps) but the second course (Excel) went off the rails.
I did watch the lectures but when I got to the quizzes and assignments, I found myself lost and not knowing how to work through the problems that were presented. Trying to work through it, I turned to the forums. The forums, however, were laregely managed by one TA-like figure that kept responding to new (and rececent) questions with 'please see previous explination' and 'I've already answered this elsewhere'. This TA has been "helping" with the course for years and then in order to find the correct post, you have to filter through years worth of posts to find one that actually explains the step by step process to follow. In some instances, you would have other students try and explain how to work through a problem (from a quiz) but their terminology is different than the instructor's and there would be a gap in the key phrases that you need to actually connect what is being requested by the quiz and how to look up a step by step process - resulting in you either already having to know the subject to look up information for the quiz, or you would have to guess at it.
Trying to take a quiz on the material that was not covered and not being able to find an explanation on the forums without filtering through "see response elsewhere" is not how I like to spend my money. I canceled my subscription/enrollment for this course.
Course and the specialization
I am really glad for this kind of courses with the Tableau and Excel/SQL. I know that these aren´t simple, but who like that stuff, will find the way for accomplishment. Although I didn´t finish all the specialization, I love most of the courses.
Many problems with this specialization
There are many problematic issues with this course, and specialization in general.
1. The theoretical level is sometimes too high and too archane/complex: I don't know how students with no background training on...
Many problems with this specialization
There are many problematic issues with this course, and specialization in general.
1. The theoretical level is sometimes too high and too archane/complex: I don't know how students with no background training on some of the topics (e.g., modelling, statistics, regression analysis, ...) can pass this course within the alloted time frame. A basic statistical knowledge should either be required or included in the curriculum of this course (perhaps as a stand-alone course).
2. The 4th course, on SQL, suffers from serious technical issues: you are supposed use webpages that provide you access to the databases you need to learn and to complete your assignments, but these webpages are down and inaccessible many times during every single week of the course (this has been not only my own experience, but also that of many co-students who have fill tons of complaints about it). Neither the teaching staff, Duke University or Coursera seem to have done anything to address these issues.
I would certainly not recommend this specialization to anyone; instead, look for alternative options, there are many of them (e.g., on EdX and others)!!!