Staffordshire University

Big Data

The course is designed to respond to critical skill shortages in the rapidly expanding field of Big Data. It offers a balance of practical skills combined with academic rigour in the field of Big Data. This is a unique offering which builds on the strengths and experience of Staffordshire University in delivering practical scholarship relevant to real world situations. The modern world is experiencing a growth of online data in a variety of forms, including social networks, web documents, digital libraries, blogs, medical records, biological data, remote sensing, imaging, forecasting etc. This data may not be fully structured but still contains valuable information that needs discovering, such as emerging opinions in social networks, consumer purchase behaviour, trends from search engines, and other patterns that emerge from such huge data sources. These developments mean traditional applications are no longer appropriate to the processing and analysis of the amount of data available. Companies such as Google are leading the movement from a large-scale relational database reflecting the desire to analyse data automatically and on a larger scale than previously seen.

Entry requirements

A UK second class honours degree or equivalent in a related computing discipline. If you do not meet this requirement but have significant appropriate experience, your application will be considered, provided you satisfy the University that you are capable of responding to the challenge of postgraduate work. If your first language is not English, you will need to demonstrate that you are fluent enough to cope with the course. A minimum score of IELTS 6 or TOEFL 550 (213 computer-based) is normally required.

Course modules

As a full time student, in the first semester you would usually cover: Managing Emerging Technologies; Data Harvesting and Data Mining; Distributed Storage; and Distributed Processing. The second semester looks at Research Methods, Virtualisation, and Big Data Applications as well as Data Modelling and Analysis. The final semester is a major research project. The actual content is open to discussion with the award leader and project supervisor must be a discipline related to Big Data.

Assessment methods

Major research project.


Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Fee locale Course duration
MSc Distance learning (full-time) September 2018 18 18 Months
MSc Distance learning (part-time) September 2018 3 3 Years

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