Business Analytics | Online Graduate Programs | SIU College of Business and Analytics

Southern Illinois University



Online Graduate Programs

College of Business and Analytics

Master of Science in Business Analytics

Why business analytics?

Analytics and Artificial Intelligence have arrived, comprising a significant and ever-increasing component of today’s complex business environment. Businesses have the capability to collect seemingly unlimited amount of data, but what does one do with all this data? That’s what business analytics is all about – knowing how to turn volumes of data into usable information to make better business decisions.

Having an executive-level ability to provide analytics-driven data and decision-making skills adds value to companies through:

  • Increasing sales through increased customer acquisition
  • Identifying innovation opportunities and cost-cutting potential
  • Understanding financial drivers and forecasting future financial performers
  • Uncovering industry and market trends

Why SIU’s Master of Science in Business Analytics?

Our Master of Science in Business Analytics is a comprehensive program that prepares students for management and executive careers that utilize data-based decision making. Our students learn to apply leading-edge analytics techniques and artificial intelligence to business solutions.

An important distinction of our program compared to many other business analytics programs is our inclusion of artificial intelligence, a technology becoming increasingly relevant for most firms.

The Pontikes Center for Advanced Analytics and Artificial Intelligence comprises high-level executives overseeing Analytics divisions at companies such as Boeing, Caesar’s Entertainment, Caterpillar, and Nike. Their continued input ensures that our curriculum remains at the forefront of what businesses seek.

Be a leader in today’s business world and position yourself for future success with SIU’s M.S. in Business Analytics!

Who is the Business Analytics program designed for?

We focus on how businesses use data and how successful businesses capitalize on the newest technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning to increase profitability. Our program does not train data scientists or computer programmers but managers and executives who will oversee data analytics departments.

The Degree Curriculum and Sample Schedule pages provide more information regarding courses and topics.

Where and when is the program delivered?

The program is delivered 100% online, year-round. Just like on-campus students, our online students are invited to our events (like tailgates, homecoming, and graduation), and we would love for you to visit! However, all of these are optional as our students are never required to come to campus.

How long will the program take to complete?

Students can customize their program of study by stretching it out or accelerating it. For those looking to accelerate their studies, we recommend the 16-month (4 semesters) plan outlined in our Sample Schedule page. However, the truly ambitious may be able to complete the program in just 12 months (3 semesters). But please proceed at the pace best suited to you.

How do I apply

Our Online M.S. in Business Analytics and M.B.A. programs have streamlined their admissions processes to match each other. You may be able to apply with as few as two or three basic documents. Please see the Graduate’s School’s application page for more details. Then, create an account  and apply.

PLEASE NOTE!!!! Please select the Master of Science in Strategic Analytics when applying online. The official name of our program is the Master of Science in Strategic Analytics. We stressed the word “Strategic” to emphasize the importance of these technologies for businesses to make better strategic decisions when competing in the marketplace. However, we have used the term “Business Analytics” on this webpage in order to be more explicit about the program’s focus, namely business. 

When can I apply?

We accept applications for admission into any semester (Fall, Spring, or Summer) year-round.

Cost of the M.S. Business Analytics Program

For most students, the cost will be $612.60 per credit hour which includes both tuition and fees. With 36 credit hours, the total cost will amount to just over $22,000. As SIU gives the same tuition rate to online students regardless of their residency status, this rate will be the same for Illinois residents, non-Illinois US residents, and international students.

Please go to the Graduate School Catalog -- Tuition and Fees and the SIU Tuition and Fee Calculators page for more information, including reductions in cost for qualifying students.

Other Analytics Programs at SIU

The SIU College of Business and Analytics offers two other Analytics programs: the M.B.A. with a concentration in Analytics for Managers and a graduate level certificate in Analytics for Managers. Prospective students should carefully decide which to pursue. Due to substantial overlap of classes between the offerings, a student can typically only complete one of the three options (M.S. Business Analytics, M.B.A., or Analytics for Managers certificate).

The difference between the M.B.A. with a concentration in Analytics for Managers and the M.S. in Business Analytics is depth. Whereas the concentration focuses on the business applicability of these technologies, the M.S. in Business Analytics also provides more technical coverage that those overseeing analytics units within companies will need.

In addition, SIU offers a graduate level certificate in Analytics for Managers. The certificate focuses on a majority of the analytics components without the greater contextual knowledge in business. The certificate requires many of the same Analytics courses but does require business courses outside of Analytics.

Our Faculty

Bios and contact info for our faculty are one click away.

Contact Information

For more information regarding the curriculum and how the M.S. in Business Analytics can help you in your career, please contact:

Jim Nelson
Associate Professor and Program Coordinator for Analytics


Kevin Sylwester
Professor and Director of the School of Analytics, Finance & Economics

For help in applying or for more administrative questions, please contact:

Nicholas Hoffman
Coordinator of Assessment and Online Graduate Programs


Online Graduate Programs
College of Business and Analytics
Southern Illinois University
1025 Lincoln Drive
Rehn Hall, Suite 133 - Mail Code 4625
Carbondale, Illinois 62901