MS in Business Analytics in USA: Complete Course Guide

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    Bhavya Rawal

    Study Abroad Expert

    Over 150 colleges offer MS in Business Analytics in the USA. Pursuing MS Business Analytics in universities of USA can cost you anywhere from 20,000-80,000 USD (annual tuition fees). With the world trade being surrounded by 2.3 trillion GB of data, a need for trained skilled professionals who can utilize and analyze this data for businesses is also on the rise. This 10 to 12-months dynamic course offers a combination of a variety of statistical and quantitative methods, computational tools, and prediction models that can be utilized in businesses. The international student's presence has been rising in the master's in business analytics programs in the USA. Here is a graph of international students in various top business analytics colleges in USA:

    International students in business analytics colleges in USA

    A business analyst aims at turning the big data into actionable intelligence. Focused on predictive and perspective techniques, business analytics programs train individuals on making data-driven decisions that can help in achieving specific business goals. What made USA a perfect student destination is that around 43 business analytics colleges in USA rank among the top 100 globally ranking colleges. 

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    Why Study MS in Business Analytics in USA?

    Pursuing MS in business analytics in the USA is not only a good idea because the country houses some of the best higher education institutions, but also because an overall demand of skilled labor is on the rise. Here is a sneak peek into the projected growth of the business analytics industry in the USA:

    • The USA is short of around 140,000-190,000 skilled professionals with deep analytical skills. 
    • The coursework is highly fluid where students have the advantage of transferring credits which makes the USA a preferred study destination. 
    • The projected growth of 40% in the overall data prevailing in the industry raises the requirement for expertise to around three million. 
    • Graduates from business analytics colleges in the USA had job offers within 3-6 months of completion of the degree. 
    • The rise in employment for business analysts in USA is projected to be around 22% within2010-2020. This suggests that around 15,000 new positions are expected to arise in the field on an annual basis.  

    These stats suggest that post completion of studies in the USAthe student will have opportunities ready to welcome them. It also suggests that how pursuing studies in USA can make a difference in student’s life.

    MS in Business Analytics in the USA: Top Universities

    The USA accounts for the world’s best colleges for Business Analysts. Both Times Higher Education and QS Ranking have placed the USA higher than others. The Analytics market in the USA is worth USD $29.53 billion alone. It is a career thriving upon critical thinking, so every year there is the dearth of 140,000-190,000 employees in the field. Some of the top-ranking universities of the USA offering masters in business analytics are listed below:

    Global Ranks Universities Program Offered School/Department Offering Annual Fees (USD) Brochure
    #1 MIT Masters of Business Analytics (1 year) Sloan School of Management 82,000 Brochure
    #2 UCLA MS Business Analytics (15 months) Anderson School of Management 26,544 Brochure
    #3 University of Texas at Austin MSBA (Master of Science in Business Analytics) 10 months McCombs School of Business 48,000 Brochure
    #11 University of Minnesota MS Business Analytics (1 year) Carlson School of Management 65,250 Brochure
    #12 Michigan State University Masters in Business Analytics (12 months) Eli Broad College of Business 39,000 Brochure
    #13 Purdue University MS Business Analytics and Information Management Krannert School of Management 48,600 Brochure
    #19 Arizona State University MSBA (9 months) W.P. Carey School of Business 55,488 Brochure
    #22 University of Notre Dame MS Business Analytics (1 year) Mendoza College of Business 55,308 Brochure
    #25 UC Davis MSBA (1 year) Graduate School of Management 26,544 Brochure
    #26 UC San Diego  MS Business Analytics (11 months) Rady School of Management 26,544 Brochure

    International students can expect a hike of around 32% on their previous salaries post completion of masters in business analytics in the USA. Better salary packages and being eyed by the top recruiters is what makes the graduate schools in USA stand out

    MS in Business Analytics in USA: Admissions

    International applicants planning to study in the USA are required to fulfill the minimum eligibility criteria and submit additional documents. The requirements for pursuing MS in Business Analytics in USA are briefed in the sections below:

    Where to Apply: For application, the applicant can apply via the university’s graduate application portal or through online application forms. The payment of application fees can be made via Transferwise.

    Eligibility for Pursuing MS in Business Analytics in USA

    The university-specific test scores and other requirements for studying MS in business analytics in USA are briefed in the table given below. However, international applicants are required to have a minimum GPA of 3.0 on a scale of 4.0. This equivalent to 83-86% score or B grade. 

    Universities Academic Requirement GRE/GMAT score Additional Requirements ELP Test Scores
    MIT(Sloan) 3 year UG accepted
    no minimum GPA (average 2020- 3.9)
    Average GRE quant- 168 Interview, work experience TOEFL: 90
    IELTS: 7.0
    University of Texas at Austin(McCombs) 87-89% Minimum GRE quant- 157 Work experience preferred but not compulsory. TOEFL– 100;
    IELTS- 6.5
    University of Notre Dame One Statistics and two business courses GMAT required 2-year work experience TOEFL: 94
    IELTS: 7.0
    Arizona State University 87-89% GRE-310 (avg)
    GMAT- 641 (avg)
    work experience of 2 years TOEFL: 80
    IELTS: 6.5
    University of Minnesota(Carlson) 80-82% Required Computer programming skills, work experience preferred TOEFL – 105+(iBT)
    IELTS- 7.0
    UCLA 3.0 GRE quant- 167 (minimum)
    GMAT- 710
    2 years work experience TOEFL: 87
    IELTS: 7.0
    Michigan State University(Eli Broad) 87-89% GMAT- 650 (avg) Applicants having GPA of 3.25 or higher will get GMAT waiver.
    Computer programming language required
    Carnegie Mellon University(Heinz College) No minimum requirement GMAT or GRE scores Interview TOEFL: 84
    ELTS: 7.0
    UC San Diego 3.0 No minimum requirement 5-year work experience TOEFL: 105
    IELTS: 7.0
    UC Davis 3.0 GMAT- 718 (avg) - TOEFL: 105
    IELTS: 7.0

    The universities that hold an interview for admissions, admission decisions for these universities are highly dependent on your performance in the interview. 

    Documents Required for Applications

    The additional documents required by the applicants planning to pursue masters in business analytics in USA are as follows:

    • Academic Transcripts: The applicant should have an undergraduate degree (4-year) with an average GPA of 3.4 or above. 
    • Scores of exams to study in the USA, like ELP tests, standardized tests, others.
    • 2-3 Letters of Recommendation: The letters of recommendation must be professional and academic ones. The person recommending must have acquainted with the applicant’s academic and work history.
    • A Statement of Purpose or an essay denotes an applicant’s academic achievements. It also includes co-curricular and professional accomplishments in detail.
    • The resume or the work experience is compulsory in some colleges and is used as a GMAT/GRE waiver. The resume must denote a minimum of 2-year employability. 
    • F-1 Visa – This visa is specifically for non-immigrants that desire to study in the US full-time. The visa falls under the Student and Exchange Visitor Program(SEVP). It is a temporary visa awarded by the US Department of State.

    MS in Business Analytics in USA Without GMAT/GRE

    GMAT/GRE scores are utilized to test the gauge of candidates seeking admission to masters programs abroad. Most of the universities offering masters in Business Analytics in USA require you to submit GMAT/GRE score. Average GMAT scores considered apt for admissions in top universities is around 700 or above. GRE equivalent scores are considered competitive enough for being accepted at top universities in the USA

    However, for international students who do not have good scores in GRE/GMAT or have not appeared for the exam yet and still wish to apply for MS in Business Analytics in USA, the following can be done: 

    1. Getting GMAT/GRE waiver with a high GPA: Scoring well in your bachelor’s degree can help you get a GMAT/GRE waiver. This is highly rare for international applicants but some international applicants who may have performed extremely well in UG can get GMAT/GRE waiver. 
    2. Apply for Universities/Colleges not wanting you to necessarily submit GMAT/GRE scores: Various top universities suggest applicants to submit GMAT/GRE scores, however, these are not necessary. Some of the popular universities or colleges offering the program to international students without GMAT/GRE score as one of the requirements are: 
    1. Work Experience: A few colleges allow international students with work experience admissions without GRE/GMAT scores. In such cases, it is important for the applicant to submit the previous experience records, a letter of recommendation from the previous employer, and a minimum of 2 years of experience. 

    MS in Business Analytics in USA: Cost of Study

    With high tuition fees, cost of living, and exchange rate in comparison to most currencies across the world, studying in the USA can burn a hole in an international student's pocket. It is always suggested that an international student planning to study MS in USA should be familiar with these expenses. The overall costs of studying abroad can be of two major kinds, pre-departure/arrival (the money spent of various exams fees, etc) and post-arrival (tuition and cost of living at the study destination). Both the expenses have been discussed below:

    Pre-arrival Expenses

    Initially, before heading to the USA, there are a considerable amount of expenses such as flight charges, USA student visa fees, application, tests required to study in the USA, etc. These are mostly your one-time expenses but still make-up a considerable amount that you must be familiar with when planning for your studies in the USA. 

    Type of Expense Cost (USD)
    Program Application Fees 100-200
    Visa Application Fees 160
    IELTS Fees 185-190
    TOEFL Fees 160-250
    GRE Fees 205-230
    GMAT Fees 250

    Tuition Fees for MS in Business Analytics in USA

    The masters in business analytics in the USA is mostly a one-year program, which can cost 27,000 USD to 82,000 USD depending upon the choice of the university. This is equivalent to 20 to 61 Lakhs INR (May 2020). This cost may seem way too high for a student on a budget. One of the best solutions for controlling this expense is applying for scholarships for international students pursuing a master's degree in USA. A variety of other funding opportunities are discussed in detail in later sections. 

    Cost of Living in USA

    In the USA living costs can rise up to $15,000 per month or more. The accommodation costs vary largely from one state to the other. 1-BHK apartment rent in Washington will cost the border $1000 whereas that same apartment would cost $500 in South Dakota. Various monthly expenses for international students planning to study in the USA are discussed below:

    Categories Average monthly expenses (in USD)
    Accommodation 1000(On-Campus)
    Meals 120-160
    Transportation 100-300
    Personal Expenditures 300-600
    Health Insurance 450-700
    Total 1,570-2,813

    Note: Student housing provided by universities in the USA are usually more expensive. 

    The cost of studying in USA can be a costly affair. International students should hence be familiar with the overall expenses they will suffer when planning to move abroad for education. Given below is a graph briefly comparing the cost of studying (living and tuition) in various universities for a year

    Cost of Studying MSBA in USA

    As per the given graph, it can be clearly noted that MIT Sloan Business School will cost you a hefty amount for MS in Business Analytics. However, Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Texas at Austin, and North Carolina State University are some of the top-ranking yet cheaper universities to pursue MS in Business Analytics in USA. 

    MS in Business Analytics in USA with Scholarships

    With approximately 1,86,000 Indian students studying in the USA, scholarship programs are widely available. The Fulbright Foreign Student Program has a specific Indian counterpart known as the Fulbright-Nehru Master’s Fellowship that funds masters students. There is also a Hubert Humphrey Fellowship Program for students looking for a financing option. These scholarships available to Indian students in USA are detailed below:

    Scholarship Amount (USD) Application Deadline
    Fullbright Masters Scholarship Tuition and other expense waivers May 15
    GoClean Scholarships 3500 Dec 1
    AAUW International Fellowships 18,000 Nov 15
    BrokerFish International Student Scholarship 1000 Dec 21
    Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation Scholarship 100,000 -

    MS in Business Analytics in USA with Loans

    Loans are available to all international students having a valid F-1 visa and attending a full-time course in the USA. Loans in the USA usually require a cosigner for granting it, in most cases he or she must be an eligible US citizen. Having a co-signer is not compulsory. Some of these loans are discussed below:

    MPower Financing

    MPower is a loan that offers the student the benefit of not opting for a cosigner. It also gives an advantage of no collateral or credit history. The maximum loan amount awarded is around $50,000 with a minimum term being offered is 10 years. The repayment rate is 8.89%-14.97%. The sole requirement for the loan is that the applicant must hold an F-1 Visa.

    Prodigy Finance

    Prodigy also offers student loans for international students without a cosigner, but credit history is required. The loan amount is based upon one's requirement. The minimum repayment term is 20 years and the rate is between 7.53%-12.03%. The loan is program-specific and state-centric.

    MS in Business Analytics in USA: Jobs

    The USA is the best place for fresh graduates. As per reports, 75% of major organizations and firms prefer hiring fresh graduates from the Business Analytics field. Brands like BCG, McKinsey, IBM and BMW flock university graduates in the field. The ROI for business analytics postgraduates in USA is explained briefly in the graph below:

    Payscale for MSBA graduates vs tuition fees in USA

    Graduates of the course find flourishing career opportunities in fields like Market Research, Supply Chain Management, Project Management or even Consultancy. Some of the popular jobs in the USA and their salaries are tabulated below:

    Job Prospect Average Salary (USD/year) Equivalent in INR
    Business Analyst 110,000 81,14,975
    Financial Analyst 93,800 69,19,860
    Data Scientist 80,500 59,38,686
    Management Analyst 83610 61,68,118
    Business Data Analyst 80,000 59,01,800
    Business Management Analyst 83,000 63,84,360

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an analyst is paid a mean wage of USD $94,390(recorded in May 2018). It is considered to be a lucrative career choice over the other ones.

    There are various other job designations and roles that a business analytics graduate can apply for, namely, Business Intelligence Managers, Business Data Managers, Innovation Managers, Data Analysts Data Scientists, etc. 

    As there is an ample amount of data floating around, estimated to be almost 44 zettabytes. A master's degree in Business Analytics feels like an important professional degree to pursue. Around 45 USA colleges offer the course to students with a background in statistics, database, business intelligence, data analysis, or machine learning. Employers usually seek out graduates from this course as they have adequate technical and teamwork skills. Hence, pursuing a master's degree in business analytics can help you land in jobs with cushy median salaries. 


    Ques. Why is the USA the chosen destination for MS in Business Analytics?

    Ans. In the USA, the analytics market is approximately $29.53 billion. The top universities like MIT(Sloan), UCLA, Michigan State University are located in the USA. Also, there are 4.6 million international students in the USA. All these factors together make USA the best-chosen destination for pursuing a Masters in Business Analytics 

    Ques. What is better Data Science or Business Analytics?

    Ans. Data Science has a higher acceptance rate than Business Analytics. Data Science needs 2 years for the entire course completion whereas Business Analytics can be completed within a duration of 12-15 months. Both Data Science and Business Analytics pay high salaries. It largely depends on the applicant as the choice of the program can depend on the duration, cost, and other factors. If you are looking for a shorter program MS in Business Analytics is the right choice. 

    Ques. Is GMAT or GRE necessary for the application?

    Ans. No, not entirely. For some colleges GMAT/GRE waiver is available. There are some colleges that do not require GMAT/GRE scores while applications are submitted. 

    Ques. What are the tuition fees for leading universities/colleges?

    Ans. The tuition fees are different in different colleges. It usually ranges between $20,000-$77,000 USD. For an Indian student, this will cost around 14-56 Lakhs INR. 

    Ques. What are the top colleges offering Ms in Business Analytics in the USA?

    Ans. Some of the top colleges offering the program include MIT Sloan Business School, University of Rochester, Krannert School of Management, Carlson School of Management, etc. 

    Ques. What is the eligibility for pursuing MS in Business Analytics in the USA?

    Ans. The basic eligibility criteria for international students include having a GPA of 3.0/4.0 which is equivalent to a B grade of 83-86% of marks. Fulfill IELTS (7.0) and TOEFL (100) test score requirements and have GMAT/GRE scores.