By: Diane Stirling
(315) 443-8975

The School of Information Studies at Syracuse University (iSchool) will be a bigger part of the data science industry’s “big event” this year.

The Strata Conference, the data science industry’s largest gathering and conference, takes place this week in Santa Clara, Calif., and the iSchool will be featured front and center in several different ways.

The only university listed this year as an exhibitor, the iSchool is hosting an information booth at the industry event. The iSchool display is located in the Innovators Pavillion, space P-13. Representatives attending the conference (and staffing the information booth) include Susan Corieri, assistant dean of enrollment management and special academic program initiatives; Dori Farah, recruiting specialist; and Erin Bartolo, Data Science program manager.

They will be on hand to represent the school and to discuss the 15-credit certificate of advanced studies program in data science; the launch of the iSchool’s first MOOC course (which begins this week); and the open-source e-book written by iSchool Professor and Senior Associate Dean for Research and Doctoral Programs Jeffrey M. Stanton (“Introduction to Data Science.”)

In addition, the iSchool and its unique data science educational approach will have added visibility in print and e-form. The school is prominently featured in a new data science industry journal, “Big Data.” The new academic journal, which is making its official debut at the Strata conference, features a recap of a panel discussion held between the journal’s editor-in-chief and iSchool representatives. In that article, Corieri, Stanton, Dean Elizabeth D. Liddy, graduate student Kate Mueller, and Microsoft FUSE lab business partner Shelly Farnham discuss a wide range of topics relating to big data’s growth and its future in education and in business.

What makes the iSchool’s approach to data science distinctive is its distinct perspective of the field, with a view of the fulllifecycle of data. That view goes well beyond what most discuss as data analytics, according to Program Manager Bartolo. The full-lifecycle perspective includes the components of big data characterized as “architect, acquire, analyze, and archive.”

The exhibit will provide significant exposure for the iSchool’s unique program as well as the opportunity to interact with many hundreds of people in the field, from working professionals, to business and industry connections, to potential graduate program students, she noted.

“A lot of why we are exhibiting there is so people realize that if you want to excel in the [big data] field, you don’t have to get a full-blown master’s degree. In 15 credits or five courses, you can get a leg up in this area and have a graduate level program under your belt,” Bartolo said. In addition, she noted, the iSchool’s courses are offered on an ongoing basis. “It’s a really flexible program for working professionals. Courses are ongoing. People can start in summer, and a lot of people like to come in for the fall session if they also doing a masters’ and using data science as a specialization,” she said.

The iSchool offers the first New York State-approved Certificate of Advanced Study in Data Science. The 15-credit program offers the flexibility of both part-time and online study. It combines theory with technical-skills learning about both structured and unstructured data, and the full data lifecycle from collection to curation.  

The iSchool’s open online course in data science (called “A Brief Introduction to Data Science Using R) is now closed. For information about future course offerings and a registration form, visit the open course website.