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Master of Science in Business Analytics (MS-BA)

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About the Master of Science in Business Analytics

Apply to be a member of the next class of Florida State University’s Master of Science in Business Analytics.

Why should you consider an MS-BA degree?

  • HIGH INDUSTRY DEMAND: Surging growth in digital information means businesses are seeking graduates who can transform this raw data into trusted analysis used to develop new financial strategies.
  • SOARING JOB GROWTH: New jobs for business analytic professionals are expected to exceed 35,000 in the next three years, an increase of more than 15 percent, according a 2017 report supported by IBM and the Business Higher Education Forum.
  • STEM DESIGNATED: Because our MS-BA qualifies as a Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics (STEM) degree, as defined by the U.S. Department of Education, students know they are gaining the priority technical and analytical skills employers seek to remain globally competitive. The STEM designation also allows eligible graduates on student visas to extend their work stay in the United States up to two years longer.

For more information, contact Dr. Ashley Bush, MS-BA Program Director, or complete our online form to receive information by email. To learn more about the MS-BA program, download the brochure (PDF).

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Apply Today

Begin your Master of Science in Business Analytics application by entering the Graduate Admissions Portal external link icon.  The application deadline is March 1, and the program admits in the summer semester only.

Admissions Guidelines
Admission to the Master of Science in Business Analytics program is highly competitive. The decision is based on a portfolio of qualifications, including prior academic performance, work experience, entrance exam scores (such as the GMAT or GRE) and letters of recommendation. The entrance exam is a university requirement that may be waived if an applicant meets certain criteria. For exact criteria and instructions on requesting waivers, see business.fsu.edu/waive.

The GMAT is the preferred exam. If you have not taken the GMAT, you should make plans to take the exam as soon as possible. To register to take the GMAT test, visit gmat.com external link icon.

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Degree Requirements


All applicants must have a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution. Previous coursework in business is not required, but all applicants are expected to have a general knowledge of economics, finance, accounting, statistics, calculus and management principles.


The MS-BA degree program will require students to complete 11 courses (33 credit hours), a combination of 8 core courses (24 credit hours) and 3 elective courses (9 credit hours).

Core courses will include:

  • ISM 5136 - Data Analytics and Mining for Business
  • ISM 5560 - Data Management in Business Analytics
  • ISM 5565 Foundational Concepts for Business Analytics
  • ISM 5566 - Forecasting, Revenue Management & Pricing
  • ISM 5644 - Programming for Analytics
  • QMB 5616 - Probabilistic Optimization for Analytics
  • QMB 5755 - Quantitative Methods in Business Analytics I
  • ISM 5### - Analytics Capstone Lab

Elective course options will include applications of analytical tools in specific business disciplines, such as marketing, human resources, operations, finance or real estate, including:

  • ISM 5257 - Data Analytics in Risk Management and Insurance
  • MAN 5375 - HR Analytics

*Note: Program requirements are subject to change.

Course Descriptions

ISM 5123 Systems Analysis and Design
In this course, students learn about the particular MIS perspective on systems development and its life cycle, from the birth of a new information system to its death and replacement. In addition, students learn about the tools, techniques, and methodologies used by systems analysts to develop information systems in organizations.


ISM 5136 Data Analytics and Mining for Business
This course will provide a managerial overview of the state of art technologies and techniques that are used to discover rich and existing patterns for generating business value, i.e. “business intelligence” for organizations.


ISM 5206 Database Development and Management
This course is designed to provide a comprehensive overview of the major issues underlying the organizational utilization of databases and database management systems. Theoretical, conceptual and practical concerns in the design and implementation of database systems are discussed. Organizational concerns in database use are highlighted through the use of case studies.

ISM 5257 Data Analytics in Risk Management and Insurance
This course focuses on the use of data and analytical tools in the insurance industry. A set of tools is developed for analyzing the types of data used by insurers across various functions including loss estimation, loss reserving, underwriting, and claims. Topics will include exploring traditional and new sources of data, legal and ethical considerations, and challenges associated with forecasting and making inferences in the context of risk and uncertainty.

ISM 5404 Business Intelligence
Advances in computing technologies have greatly enhanced our ability to collect and store large amounts of data, i.e. big data. Yet, corporations today are said to be data rich but knowledge poor. This course will introduce state-of-the-art Business Intelligence and Analytics techniques to discover knowledge from massive data sets using a hands-on approach. Students will have a chance to apply such techniques on real-world data sets in various domains, including finance, healthcare, commerce and sports in order to produce actionable intelligence for enhanced managerial decision making.


ISM 5560 Data Management in Business Analytics
This course will discuss various data-related issues in business analytics and introduce the best practices, underlying principles, and emerging technologies in data management. Specifically, the course will cover 1) foundational data management concepts, 2) best practices in managing big data, and 3) unstructured data management.


ISM 5565 Foundational Concepts for Business Analytics
The primary objective of this course is to prepare graduate students in the Business Analytics graduate program with foundational tools and techniques used in subsequent courses.  The primary (but not exclusive) focus will be on achieving and understanding of the role of applied probability methods in business analytics.


ISM 5566 Forecasting, Revenue Management & Pricing
This course explores how big data can be used for understanding and analyzing customer demand and behavior. First, the class surveys the canonical uses of data to analyze consumer demand — time-series forecasting. There will be a focus on Exponential Smoothing and ARIMA models. Then, we explore the idea that sales is not the same as demand.


ISM 5644 Programming for Analytics
This is an introductory course intended to introduce students to the basics of computer programming for business analytics. The course will place special emphasis on utilizing Python programming language for data science and analytics related tasks.


ISM 5### Business Analytics for Competitive Advantage
New course number still being determined.

The course examines the strategic and managerial foundations of business analytics, its use cases and conceptual considerations. Apart from case-led instruction, this course also provides some hands-on experiences with leading-edge software packages, including IBM’s Watson, Tableau, and two textual analytics tools, Semantria and MineMyText.


ISM 5### Analytics Capstone Lab
New course number still being determined.


MAN 5375 HR Analytics
The course focuses on the analysis and application of a company’s HR data to uncover insights that inform HR strategies, process changes, and investments – with the goal of improving organizational performance (i.e., driving business outcomes). Students will learn about theory and research regarding drivers of employee performance, retention, and engagement, as well as the critical HR metrics that are important for business outcomes.


QMB 5616 Probabilistic Optimization for Analytics
This course teaches students techniques to address problems in regression, discriminant analysis, principal component analysis, logistic regression, SEM, etc. Students will utilize methods such as calculus and linear algebra.


QMB 5755 Quantitative Methods in Business Analytics I
This course focuses on deterministic methods of perspective analytics.

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Business Analytics faculty and staff members list

Click here to view our Business Analytics faculty and staff.

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Application Process

The following items should be submitted through the Florida State Graduate Application portal external link icon:
  • Applicant Statement (Word Document, .docx)
  • Current resume/C.V., clearly indicating work experience including dates and positions held, noting full-time or part time employment. Management, business and leadership experience should also be clearly detailed.
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation from employers or former college professors that speak specifically to the applicant’s ability to successfully complete the MS-BA program (submitted by the recommenders in the online application).
  • Nonrefundable application fee of $30.00 (see University Application or go to http://fees.fsu.edu external link icon)

The following items should be sent to the Admissions Office, PO Box 3062400, 282 Champions Way, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306-2400:

  • One (1) official transcript from all colleges and universities attended (FSU students and alumni, please note: It is not necessary to request FSU transcripts because the Graduate Programs Office has access to official copies.)
  • Florida Resident Affidavit, if applicable (see University Application or http://admissions.fsu.edu/images/pdf/residency.pdf external link icon)
  • Official GMAT or GRE scores (all sections of the entrance exams must be completed).  The code to send GMAT scores to Florida State is PN8K567, and the code to send GRE scores is 5219.

International Applicants

International applicants whose native language is not English and who have not completed an undergraduate or graduate degree in an English-speaking country are required to take either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and submit official test results in order to be admitted to The Florida State University. The College of Business requires a minimum TOEFL score of 100 on the internet-based test, or a minimum of 7.0 on the IELTS exam, taken within the past two (2) years.

In addition, international graduate applicants seeking teaching assistantships are required to pass a test of spoken English.

In addition to the above mentioned personal funding, international applicants, if admitted, will be required to obtain health insurance.

For University information, such as financial responsibilities, degree equivalency, to access the University application, etc., please go to the international applicant information site external link icon.

Waiving the GMAT/GRE
The entrance exam requirement may be waived for outstanding applicants who meet certain criteria

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Program Costs


The MS-BA program requires 33 credit hours:

  • Florida residents: $479.32 (tuition plus fees) per credit hour. Total estimate program cost is $15,817.56
  • Non-Florida Residents: $1,110.72 (tuition plus fees) per credit hour. Total estimate program cost is $36,653.76.

Note: These costs do not include required books and supplies for courses.

Costs are subject to change. Fees in table do not include some per-term flat fees for FSUCard and facilities use. For a breakdown of on-campus student fees and their explanations, visit the university’s Tuition Rates page.

Read more about the college’s financial assistance options for graduate students.

You may also visit Florida State's financial aid website for more information on types of financial aid.

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Request More FSU MS-BA Information


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