The business analytics and intelligence graduate certificate program is designed for working professionals seeking to hone their skills by learning to efficiently extract, analyze, interpret, and present information to decision makers in the private sector.

The business analytics and intelligence graduate certificate is a four course, 12-credit program consisting of three core classes to improve data analytics for the private sector, business writing and strategies.  One elective is to be selected from business-related intelligence courses, which include: cyber threat, social network, financial analysis, advanced analytical techniques, or geospatial intelligence.

The twelve graduate credits awarded through the certificate may be used to partially satisfy the degree requirements for the Applied Intelligence master's degree offered by the Ridge College of Intelligence Studies and Applied Sciences at Mercyhurst University.

Course Requirements 

The courses are sequential and build on each other. Students must complete the courses listed below in the following sequence:

  • INTL 565 Business Writing and Visual Presentation
  • INTL 605 Data Analytics for the Private Sector
  • Intelligence Elective Course
  • INTL 625 Intelligence and Business Strategy

INTL 565 Business Writing and Visual Presentation (3 credits)

This course will focus on written communication skills in intelligence along with how to successfully leverage visual tools to communicate information to business leaders and decision makers. The writing component will focus on concision, clarity, and coherence as well as addressing how to present information effectively using various venues such as portable electronic devices. Students will learn about practical techniques and concepts for visualizing information. An overview of current analytics tools will be presented and leveraged for assignments.  In addition to presenting compelling visuals for Business Intelligence, successful participants will become better communicators able to produce highly interactive graphs, reports and dashboards that access and visualize data.  The course will also incorporate business presentations that will involve delivering a message orally, supplemented by presentation tools such as PowerPoint and Prezi.

INTL 605 Data Analytics for the Private Sector (3 credits)

Data analytics is the process of generating and delivering information that enables and supports an improved and timely decision process. The aim of this course is to provide the student with an understanding of a broad range of decision analysis techniques and facilitate the application of these methodologies to analyze real-world business problems, arrive at a rational solution, and present the solution to decision makers. Topics covered include: foundations of business analytics, descriptive analytics, predictive analytics, and the use of computer software for statistical and visualization applications (Excel and Gelphi). The course work will provide case studies and present real applications of data analytics.

Student Elective Selection (3 Credits)

For this course in the Graduate Certificate in Business Analytics and Intelligence, students will select from several business-related electives offered or in development by the Ridge College.  Possible electives include:

  • INTL 595 Geospatial Intelligence
  • INTL 560 Cyber Threat Analysis
  • INTL 626 Financial Intelligence Analysis
  • INTL 520  Advanced Analytic Techniques
  • INTL 638 Social Network Analysis

INTL 625 Intelligence and Business Strategy (3 credits)

Intelligence is the practice of analyzing external forces and estimating their potential impact.  Strategy is the process of setting objectives, coordinating initiatives, allocating resources and responding to internal and external developments.  Intelligence is most effective when it is directly integrated into an organization’s strategic decision-making. This course examines the interconnections between competitive intelligence and business strategy.  The course provides a detailed overview of the business strategy field, highlighting influential thinkers, key concepts and core analytical frameworks. It describes the evolution of competitive intelligence and strategy in response to current management trends, such as the drive for innovation and the rise of big data. Throughout the course, students have the opportunity to apply both competitive intelligence methods and strategy frameworks to multidisciplinary case studies drawn from a variety of industries and countries. 

Admission Requirements

Only candidates with undergraduate degrees can be accepted into the Business Intelligence Training Program. Applicants should have an undergraduate or graduate degrees in a business-related field OR two years of work experience as a business professional.  Those without business education or work experience may be required to take INTL 540: Competitive Intelligence (3 credits) as a prerequisite course to the certificate program.  Experience working with spreadsheets and using formulas in Microsoft Excel or a similar application is expected.

Online Courses

Mercyhurst’s online courses are delivered through the Blackboard Learning Management System. The classes are asynchronous, so students can access the course material 24/7, without having to be there at a specific time. However, the courses are not “independent or self-study.” You may be required to brief or with your instructor or group members in an online format.

Courses run on either an 8-week (mini) or 15-week (semester) schedule, with due dates and times each week for assignments, including required readings, postings to the discussion board, written products, presentations and other projects. Students generally log into the course at least three times per week and can expect to spend an average of 10 hours per week working on assignments.

Class sizes are limited to approximately 20 students, so that individual attention is assured. In addition to communication through Blackboard, instructors are accessible by phone and email.

Cost and Financial Aid

Mercyhurst graduate programs are competitively priced. Our goals it to provide you with an education that earns you an excellent return on your investment.

Tuition for the Certificate in Business Analytics and Intelligence graduate program is $985 per credit (2021/22 school year rates).

Estimated total program cost for the Certificate in Business Analytics and Intelligence is $13,000.

Learn more about available financial aid for graduate programs including:

  • Graduate Assistant (GA) positions
  • Graduate Employment (GE) positions
  • Corporate partner tuition rates
  • Veteran benefits
  • Employer reimbursement
  • Federal Direct Loans