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Summer Semester / Sommersemester

Introduction to Data Science and Machine Learning (B. Sc.)

Welcome to Introduction to Data Science and Machine Learning [DSML]. This course and the accompanying reading materials aim to provide you with the fundamental knowledge and skills required for an introductory course on data science and machine learning using information systems that drive business success.

Business analytics is the use of data-driven decision making. Companies, governments, and other organizations now collect and have access to large amounts of data about suppliers, clients, employees, citizens, transactions, etc. Data Mining and predictive analytics provide a powerful toolkit for detecting actionable patterns in data and generating predictions. These methods are used in many industries:

  • Mobile companies use their customer database to predict customer churn or to personalize SMS messages for improving customer service
  • Financial institutions use past loan data to predict defaulting chance for loan applicants
  • Charities use data from a campaign in one location to target the right people in another location
  • Politicians use databases of supporters to segment and best target each audience
  • Movie rental and eCommerce websites provide recommendations based on users online behavior
  • Renewable energy providers use weather forecasts to predict their electricity generation to better trade in different types of markets.

In this course we work with a combination of stylized data, real business problems and real data. We will examine types of questions that data mining can answer and the appropriate data mining tools for answering different questions. The emphasis is on understanding the core concepts and logic behind data science and machine learning techniques and their relation to specific business analytics situations. The course provides the theoretical underpinnings of these techniques and is focused on a business analytics team project that will encapsulate the learnings. In your project, you develop the idea, the business justification, and the analytics for a compelling (sustainable) business application.

You will learn about the process of data analytics. You will learn to identify problems, to define the structure of an information system, to evaluate competing solutions for a business problem, and you will start to “speak business and analytics”. You will gain an insight into how important these activities are in creating information systems that are truly aligned with business needs. Throughout the course, you will also learn about selected topics in sustainability, especially in terms of renewable electricity.