Business intelligence degrees are not entirely available in Canadian colleges as ‘Business Intelligence’. For example, a private university like University of British Columbia has the Business and Computer Science Bachelor’s degree. It combines a typical business degree with background and experience in computer science. “The Business and Computer Science combined major will give you the technical background and understanding to apply IT solutions in a business context and use them to develop opportunities for growth” (UBC, 2018). Each semester, students take a combination of commerce and computer science-related courses. The official degree name is Bachelor of Commerce and takes on average, 4 years to complete.
This kind of BI program is located mainly in the computer science department with year 1 courses consisting of computation, programs, and programing, models of computation, and integral calculus. Although commerce essentials are part of the program as well, like managerial accounting, course offering consisting of data structures and software construction are the focus for the first two years. Then for years 3 and 4, students learn software engineering, artificial intelligence, and management of information systems. The degree has a core of basic business courses with heavy emphasis on computer science principles.
Stephen J.R. Smith School of Business at Queen's University
The next school to examine is the Stephen J.R. Smith School of Business at Queen's University. This is a business school within a university that aims to encourage students interested in business to pursue other avenues within the field related to data management and analysis. While the school mainly does graduate programs, they have an undergraduate business program. For example, in the first and second year, they offer again, a computer science related, mathematical course load. An example of this is Introduction to Mathematical Analysis for Management and Enabling Business with Information Systems (Queens University, 2018). Although the fourth and third year are a mix of elective courses, the school places emphasis on commerce and science related courses. Overall, the business school has more focus on mathematics and commerce related subjects, although it does include the computer science consideration/aspect. This kind of movement demonstrates the growing future trends of integrating business with computer science/mathematics. Mainly because of the need for big data and analysis within the field of business. However, that trend is within the master’s degree aspect more so than undergraduate.
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“Big data as a means to solve business problems has been rapidly infiltrating graduate business education for years now. Many graduate B-schools across the world offer courses, concentrations, and master’s degrees in business analytics” (Allen, 2018).
Business analytics is more of the main term for business intelligence in Canada. Conestoga College is a public college located in Ontario that has a part-time business analysis program. The program can be completed online and allows students to understand and facilitate data analysis within a business setting. “This online program is designed for business analysts, project managers, operations managers, systems analysts, quality assurance analysts, marketing professionals and anyone whose role is about defining, and analyzing or solving business problems” (Conestoga, 2018). Computer science is a strong part of the core requirements for this program with course offerings such as Software Testing, Introduction to Analytics and Big Data, and Business Process Modeling and Improvement. Unlike the other two schools that are private, this public college allows the convenience of taking the entire program online. The school offers distance learning for a variety of fields. Although the program does not offer a thorough understand of business intelligence, it does offer a particularly varied and robust course load for anyone looking to secure a better understanding of business analysis.
The school is convenient in that it places emphasis more on distance learning than other schools with similar programs. Business analysis involves analysis of big data. Because higher learning can be costly, especially for international students or students wishing to learn through long distance learning, online courses like the program offered at Conestoga are not only cost-efficient but may be a future trend set to replace traditional learning environments. “Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) potentially challenge the traditional dominance of brick and mortar institutions as providers of quality higher education. The benefits for students include reduced education costs and global access to exclusive institution courses and instructors” (Burd, Smith, & Reisman, 2015, p. 37). Students do not have that option for schools like Queens University and University of BC. Even for their master’s programs, they typically do not offer online courses for many courses. The schools that offer these online programs tend to be….....
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Queens University. (2018, September 27). Queen's Commerce - Academics - Program Fees Curriculum. Retrieved from https://smith.queensu.ca/bcom/academics/index.php
Sharda, R., Delen, D., & Turban, E. (2017). Business Intelligence. Pearson Australia Pty Ltd.
UBC. (2018). Business and Computer Science. Retrieved from https://you.ubc.ca/ubc_programs/business-computer-science/