Data Mining Essentials

A worker mining data

Modern society produces a mind-boggling amount of data every day—at least 2.5 quintillion bytes. Those bytes include everything from social media posts and cute kitten videos to technical white papers and financial records. So what happens to all of that data, and what exactly do data scientists do? If you’re fascinated by this field, you may wish to consider a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with an Emphasis in Big Data Analytics, available from Grand Canyon University.

Our computer science degree is a science degree that provides a strong foundation in math, science and theoretical computer science. This foundation prepares students for a broad range of specializations within the realm of computer science, including data science, big data analytics, business analytics and network analytics. If you are interested in this field, then consider our emphasis in big data analytics to start learning more and consider furthering your education after earning your degree.

The Basics and Process

Data mining is a complex subspecialty which boils down to the processing of large or meaningful sets of data. This allows for the identification of patterns in the data. Analysts can then turn this raw data into knowledge that can have a vast range of applications.

There is a ton of data out there, and most of it is not relevant for one particular business or industry. It is the job of big data experts to use established methodologies to extract useful information from of all that data. The process starts with defining the problem or objective.

The Key Concepts in Data Mining

If you decide to pursue a degree in this field, you will learn about the different forms of data pattern detection. One type is cluster detection. This is a particularly complex form of data mining that requires advanced, black-box algorithms. It involves having the data sort itself into sub-categories or clusters.

A second type is association analysis. It uses if/then algorithms to compare frequently occurring patterns. One real-life example of this is how Amazon is able to suggest relevant recommendations for users based on products they have previously purchased. For instance, if someone purchases a refurbished router, then he or she might also be interested in a book on woodworking because other users who have purchased routers have also purchased woodworking books.

Grand Canyon University is a private Christian school with a long tradition of academic excellence and servant leadership. Our College of Science, Engineering and Technology is accepting applications from future students who are interested in one of our relevant and updated degree programs. Visit our website or look for the Request More Information button on this website to get started.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.