module specification

CC5053 - Data Science for Business (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Data Science for Business
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Total study hours 150
105 hours Guided independent study
45 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 60%   Individual Business data analytical report [1500 words + analytical output and evaluation]
Unseen Examination 40%   2 hour unseen exam.
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester North Thursday Morning

Module summary

This module will enable students to understand the fundamental concepts of data science and appreciate key techniques of data science and its applications. Students will be exposed to data understanding, preparation, modelling, results evaluation and data visualisation techniques that can assist businesses in making effective data-driven decisions to improve productivity and consumer satisfaction. Students will be introduced to the practical application of tools and techniques required to perform data science projects in a modern business environment.

Module aims

The main aim of this module is to provide students with an understanding of the fundamental concepts techniques of data science and its applications in a wide range of business context. Students will be exposed to the approaches used for problem formulation, data preparation and data modelling, visualisation, forecasting and data-driven decision-making. Students will gain practice in the tools and techniques used for data science projects in a modern business environment.


Introduction to key concepts in data science: data science tools, approaches, techniques and application scenarios.

An overview of data mining process for business: business understanding, data understanding, data preparation, data modelling, results evaluation and deployment.

Business data environment: operational database, data warehouse, web and big data platform

Data understanding and preparation: data measurement, statistical summaries, transformation, cleaning, and graphical visual exploration.

Data science business applications: credit scoring, fraud detection, customer relationship management, associated products detection, correlation and identification.

Web data analysis: Social network analysis, affiliation prediction and recommendation

Learning and teaching

Topics will be introduced through the medium of formal lectures, supported by tutorial and workshop sessions, and blended learning as follows:
- Lecture (1 hour / week):
Introduction of the major topics identified in the syllabus, plus for practical exercises, directed reading and other further study
- Tutorial/ Workshop (2 hour / week):
Consolidating understanding of topics introduced in the lecture via class and group discussions, informal presentations and other activities in the tutorial sessions.
Data analytic skills will be further developed through lab-based workshops.
- Blended learning:
Using the University’s VLE and online tools to deliver content, assessment and feedback, to encourage active learning, and to enhance student engagement and learning experience.
Students will be expected and encouraged to produce reflective commentaries on the learning activities and tasks that they carry out to complete their work.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

LO1: Understand fundamental concepts techniques of data science.
LO2: Appreciate the business context in which the analysis of data can be fruitful and effective for decision-making and creating value.
LO3: Understand and compare the techniques and tools for analysing and visualising data.
LO4: Develop the practical skills in preparing, modelling and visualising data.
LO5: Gain exposure to the practice of formulating and structuring problems and identifying the relevant tools to aid problem-solving.

Assessment strategy

Students are assessed by two compulsory assessments [LO1-5].

The first compulsory assessment is an individual coursework assignment [1500 words + analytical output and evaluation] designed mainly to assess the practical aspects of the module. It will provide students with the opportunity to undertake research on current issues and practical techniques in data analytics and the effective application and deployment of these approaches [LO1, LO2]. It will also enable students to apply their knowledge to a practical business problem, demonstrating their skills for problem-solving and critical evaluation [LO3, LO4, LO5].

The second compulsory assessment is a 2-hour written exam designed to assess the understanding of fundamental concepts and their practical application [LO1, LO2, LO3, LO5].


Provost, F. & Fawcett, T., Data Science for Business: What you need to know about Data Mining and Data-analytic thinking, (2013), O’Reilly Media [CORE].

EMC Education Services, Data Science and Big Data Analytics: Discovering, Analyzing, Visualizing and Presenting Data, (2015), John Wiley & Sons.

Graham, A., Statistics – A Complete Introduction: Teach Yourself Paperback, (2013), Hodder & Stoughton.

Jeffrey M. Stanton, 2013. Introduction to data science – e-copy is freely available at
[Last accessed April 2016].

Students will be also be directed to current websites which allow social interaction and forum-based technical support, such as  [Last accessed April 2016].