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Rutgers to implement new masters program for big data analysis

<p>The Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, located in New Brunswick, involves a curriculum that requires intensive study of data analysis. The new masters program will combine data analysis with computer programming and statistics.</p>

The Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, located in New Brunswick, involves a curriculum that requires intensive study of data analysis. The new masters program will combine data analysis with computer programming and statistics.


Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy will be launching a new big data masters program in the Fall 2019 semester, the school announced on their website

Research Professor and Director of the Public Informatics program at Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy Frank Felder said in an interview with The Daily Targum that the program combines the analysis of large data sets, computer programming and statistics with different sectors. 

“It will prepare students for careers in … transportation, housing, development, energy, environmental issues …” Felder said. 

The large data sets will be used to inform planning and public policy in these areas and help them make decisions based on expected outcomes, he said. 

Big data has grown tremendously in recent years and advanced the way policymakers and planners do their jobs. 

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor and Statistics reported that the job outlook for data analysis is expected to grow as much as 30 percent, creating an additional 28,000 jobs, within the years 2014 to 2024, according to the website. 

“There is a huge demand for students who can apply the quantitative techniques,” Felder said. “To problems, business problems, public policy and planning.” 

The new program is expected to require 36 credit hours within 18 months, according to the website. It will work as a complement to Bloustein's fifth-ranked graduate program in urban planning. 

“The school’s curriculum has always required intensive study of data analysis and multivariate methods,” said Clinton Andrews, a professor of Urban Planning and associate dean for Research. “As students mastered these skills, they began requesting more challenging applications of data analysis and interpretation.”

Felder said the program is still receiving applicants, and that they are looking for students with backgrounds in economics, computer science, statistics, political science and other sciences. 

His role will be to manage what he said is the program’s whole pipeline, including the curriculum, career development and recruitment. 

“My role is to bring all the different elements of the Bloustein School together to give students the opportunity to excel in this area,” Felder said. 


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