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Majors & Degrees

CIS in Business Analytics

January 10, 2023

Lizzy Elder always knew she wanted to enter the computer field but didn’t want to do all the complicated math often associated with computer science majors.

After touring DSU and speaking with professors, she found her path in the Computer Information Systems (CIS) program.

“DSU was unlike any other college I visited. No other university compared to how hands-on the classes and teaching style are here,” Elder said.

She said that the Computer Information Systems major has two sides, the computer side and the business side. She finds that the major provides the perfect amount of computer classes and learning how to program without getting too in-depth. Then adding courses like accounting and statistics helps tie together the business aspect of the program.

“It shows how everything is really connected in the real world,” she said.

Elder appreciates the foundational knowledge she’s learned in programming and the variety of business courses, including operations management, big data, and marketing, which help her understand how companies work and function.

Right now, many of her classes are focused on data. Elder explained that so much data is available today that it’s essential to learn how to file through it and understand what it means.

“Every single company, everywhere you look, it doesn’t matter if it’s a tiny company or a big company, will need to analyze data,” she said. “It’s everywhere. So, learning how to work with the data and be profitable and profit off it is super important to companies.”

Through the CIS program, Elder learned that she liked statistics. Assistant Professor Robert Girtz, who teaches statistics, helped her connect to the material. This led her to make her specialization business analytics.

“It really shows how important teachers are,” she said of her experience. “Almost every single person who’s taken that class that I’ve talked to absolutely loves it. It really highlights the professors and the teaching style here at DSU.”

In addition to having positive experiences with professors like Girtz, Elder also appreciates of the support she’s received from her advisor Andy Behrens.

“I called him this summer about career questions that I had,” she said. “So, he’s the best.”

The experiences she’s had in classes and the fact that professors like Girtz, Behrens, and Brenda Merkle, make them enjoyable, has helped Elder look ahead to her future.

“Just being able to talk to them after class and being comfortable knowing that they value their students and want them to succeed has been so important,” she said.

Elder recommends the program for anyone interested in business or leadership. She explained that the program helps students understand the company’s skeleton, take it apart and see how it functions and what is required in managerial roles.

“Dakota State does a really good job getting students ready for actual positions,” Elder said.

“Students focusing on business analytics will learn about big data, predictive analytics, business production operation, and how to work with SQL databases,” said Assistant Professor Andrew Behrens. “The students will learn the process of extracting the data, analyzing it, and presenting it meaningfully. A graduate from our program can effectively analyze any data the business generates.”

 

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