Specialized Master in Business Analytics
The Fisher SMB-A Difference

Students Working on Project

In a world powered by Big Data, performing sophisticated and systematic analyses of information is highly valued. The Fisher Specialized Master in Business Analytics (SMB-A) provides the know-how to effectively harness, interpret, and analyze this data. You'll master descriptive, predictive, prescriptive analytics, which businesses rely on to drive innovation, productivity, and decision-making.

At Fisher, we deliver this know-how through an individualized approach. Each student is given opportunities to practice in real life what your professors have taught in the classroom. This experiential learning methodology means that you’ll be given actual business challenges and work with your peers, or lead a team to solve them. This deep-dive into analytics is the key to unlocking your career potential.

Our program has the following unique features:

  • Open/Close Blended Delivery Format

    SMB-A students complete each class 75 percent online (asynchronous), with the remaining 25 percent delivered via in-person Saturday classes or live-streaming*. Fisher's blended learning format combines the flexibility of online learning with personal interactions and intensive individual and group learning through traditional face-to-face instruction. Students living 50+ miles away from Ohio State's main campus can live-stream* Saturday sessions to complete the in-person portion of each class from anywhere in the country.

    Download the SMB-A Information Sheet and Curriculum

    *Except under unusual circumstances, the online streaming option is only available to students living 50+ miles away from Ohio State’s main campus.

  • Open/Close The SMB-A Virtual Lab - R, Rstudio, Python, SQL, Tableau, PuTTY, and more!

    The R statistical package has become the language of analytic modeling. A common component of our classes is the reliance on R for learning and analysis. R is used extensively by major players in data analytics; some examples include Google, Amazon and Nationwide Insurance. Gain the skills top employers seek and use them to stand out. 

    Computing: The SMB-A virtual lab

    Experiential (hands-on) learning is a cornerstone at Fisher. SMB-A students learn the real-world skills that employers want. Each student is provided with a persistent virtual machine (VM) - basically a private windows PC in "the cloud".

    R Tableau
    Rstudio Chrome and Firefox
    Python (Anaconda) Vim text editor
    Jupyter notebooks Notepad++
    MS Office (Excel, Access, PPT, Word) NppToR
    SQL server 2017 and data tools PuTTY
    Git for Windows FileZilla
  • Open/Close Systems Thinking - Gain an edge with employers

    Systems thinking involves taking a broad and pragmatic perspective when analyzing structures, patterns, and feedback mechanisms in real-world contexts. The end goal is to better understand the dynamics between cause and effect. In doing so, analysts are in a much better position to develop realistic solutions for which short- and long-term synergies and risks are sufficiently appreciated. The SMB-A program teaches systems thinking through a business analytics lens, so you have the correct mindset to address chronic issues others may have been unable to solve. With this approach, we challenge our students to learn to:

    • Examine problems more completely and accurately
    • Ask better questions before reaching a conclusion
    • Understand limitations to inform decisions
    • Gain insights into how others might see a system differently
    • Create long-term solutions
  • Open/Close Analytics Management Capstone

    At the conclusion of the program, during the summer semester, each student will complete a 3-credit-hour applied analytics practicum/capstone course. However, the Capstone course is an integral part of the entire SMB-A program from the beginning and is designed to help students further practice, apply, showcase and fine-tune the skills and software they learned in the program on carefully selected real-world analytics projects or data from their current employer. Capstone projects are real consulting projects where you'll gain experience managing a small team  as the project lead. This is a a unique opportunity to showcase your new business expertise to a professional audience.


    Learn about the SMB-A Analytics Management Capstone


    SMB-A Analytics Management Capstone Timeline

  • Open/Close Be part of a top-ranked business school

    Companies are a driving force behind the recent analytics boom as they collect vast amounts of data, so shouldn't you earn your analytics degree from a business school? Yes! The Specialized Master in Business-Analytics is taught within the college of business at Ohio State providing advantages you won't find in other programs:

    • It takes technical expertise AND business know-how for analytics to be successful. At Fisher, you'll learn to communicate with stakeholders and lead change by applying and presenting practical solutions.  
    • Connections matter. You'll be interacting with faculty, peers, and alumni with real-world data science, consultation, and analytics experience in the business world.
    • Link theory to practice. Work on projects with actual companies and data, and then connect with employers through Fisher's Office of Career Management.
    • Unmatched career services. SMB-A students receive one-on-one career consultation, coaching, and more from Fisher's in-house Office of Career Management. From professional development to events and fairs, you'll have the resources needed to reach your career goals.
  • Open/Close World-class Faculty

    The Specialized Master in Analytics program is co-directed by John Draper and Elliot Bendoly, faculty members at the Fisher College of Business.

    Dr. John Draper comes from The Ohio State University’s Department of Statistics, where he served as visiting faculty and taught both graduate and undergraduate courses in statistical theory and application. His teaching experiences at Ohio State also include statistics in business, engineering and sports as well as biostatistics courses for graduate-level students in the College of Public Health and Dentistry. His professional experiences include roles as a statistical consultant as well as positions at Battelle Memorial Institute and Cengage Learning. Learn more about John Draper

    Dr. Elliot Bendoly, is the Fisher College of Business Distinguished Professor in the Department of Management Sciences. Prior to joining Fisher, Dr. Bendoly taught at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School, where he lead the Information Systems and Operations Management area/department, and held the title of Caldwell Research Fellow. Bendoly’s research (Google h-index 38 as of 2020) has been published in numerous journals, including no less than 27 articles.  Various tools that he has developed for use in management education can be found at www.blackbelt-apps.com.  Learn more about  Elliot Bendoly,

  • 31.5 credit hours required plan of study
  • The program can be taken full-time or part-time, even by working professionals. Complete the program in as little as 2.5 semesters (10-month) utilizing the full-time option, or stretch it over a 2 year period for those wishing to enroll on a part-time basis. You decide on the pace!
  • A blended learning delivery model tailored to you 75% online / 25% in-person Saturday classes or live-streaming from anywhere in the country*.
  • 3.5 in the morning and 3.5 in the afternoon. 1.5 hours for lunch. Lunch will be provided during in-person Saturday classes.
  • STEM-designated degree
  • Dedicated one-on-one SMB-A career consultant
  • A small program size means we're focused on your career goals and success

Learn More (Program Structure / Curriculum)

View SMB-A Alumni Testimonials & Career Info


*Except under unusual circumstances, the online streaming option is only available to students living 50+ miles away from Ohio State’s main campus.