The 21 st century has seen the public and private sectors taking on more data-intensive and computationally challenging projects. The need for qualified professionals in data analytics has never been more pronounced. Canada's big data talent gap is between 10,500 and 19,000 professionals with deep data and analytical skills, with an  additional 150,000 job gap requiring solid data and analytical literacy*. Western Science has responded to the call for highly qualified personnel in data analytics through the establishment of the Masters of Data Analytics (MDA), a professional science master's program.

Designed to produce professionals ready to start an analytics-focused career, the MDA program provides students with the core training they need to work in a professional setting while allowing them to customize their experience by choosing a learning path tailored to their interest in a specialty field. These tracks cater to students who are interested in 

  1. Finance, Banking, and Insurance: For those who want to  understand risk management at banks, including its drivers and implementation strategies, and its specific regulatory pressures
  2. Generalist: For those who want an understanding of how data analytics applies to interdisciplinary challenges
  3. Artificial Intelligence: For students with a background in computer science

The program culminates in a four-month experiential learning opportunity, which in most cases will be a paid experience working in an industry, where students take the technical skills they have developed over the past eight months and apply them in an organizational setting.

Over 20 faculty members, spanning a variety of disciplines from the Departments of Computer Science and Statistical & Actuarial Sciences, share their expertise and guidance through a core set of foundational courses and a subset of electives to both broaden and deepen your expertise in data analytics.

The MDA community is comprised of a mosaic of intellects, cultures, and interests. The daily operations of Western's MDA program are supported by its Director and a dedicated administrative team who engage directly with our students, to ensure they have the information needed for positive progression toward their degree.

*"Closing Canada's Big Data Talent Gap", Canada's Big Data Consortium, Project leads: Gerri Sinclair and Ayse Bener, October 2015.