Large Data Analysis Certificate

The Large Data Analysis Certificate is an opportunity for you to stand out in your field. This is a credential that you can get along with your BA or BS that shows that you have expertise in this important and growing area. Flyer

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Frequently Asked Questions

To declare your intention to complete this certificate visit the Office of Academic Programs & Student Development in Room 120 SH. You can also declare the certificate using MyUI. Upon graduation, certificate students must declare the Large Data Analysis Certificate when submitting the application for degree.

Classes you take before can be counted. If you are interested in this certificate, contact the affiliated faculty. For financial support, contact the academic coordinator.

Download and fill out a  plan of study and email to the academic coordinator.
Courses requirements are shown below.
Current certificate students may refer to the "LDA Certificate Advising/Fact Sheet" for guidance.


What is Large Data Analysis?

Large Data Analysis is a new area for handling, processing, and extracting information from large data sets. As computers have become faster and smaller, so too have sensors, and the amount of information that we can gather about the world around us has exploded. Large data analysis techniques enable us to use these data for a wide range of applications, such as

  • finding out what's under the ground (seismic data),
  • identifying groups of people via Facebook,
  • understanding the genome,
  • searching for the causes of diseases and ways of preventing, controlling, or curing them.

We need computer science to know how to handle the large amounts of data and how to implement the algorithms to process them, statistics to see what can and what cannot be legitimately inferred from the data, and mathematics for the algorithms and methods for connecting these things.

What is a Certificate?

A Certificate is an official University credential saying that you have learned a specific area (usually related to major in some way). The advantage of a Certificate, is that it shows that you have additional expertise in this particular area. This provides clear evidence to any potential employer or graduate school that you have interest and abilities in this speciality.

The Large Data Analysis is an undergraduate Certificate offered through the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS).

The University of Iowa offers a number of Certificates in a wide range of areas.

Note: You can get a CLAS certificate without having earned a baccalaureate degree.

    Requirements for the Large Data Analysis Certificate (Click here for requirements prior to Fall 2017 matriculation)

    The undergraduate Certificate in Large Data Analysis requires a minimum of 18 s.h. The certificate may be earned by any student admitted to the University of Iowa who is not concurrently enrolled in a UI graduate or professional degree program. Students must maintain a g.p.a. of at least 2.00 in work for the certificate.

    Students majoring in computer science, mathematics, or statistics may count a maximum of 6 s.h. of course work for their major toward the certificate. Students pursuing other majors should consult with their major advisors to ascertain whether they may count certificate course work toward their majors.

    Most of the certificate courses have prerequisites not included in the certificate requirements. Students need to select courses for which they have met the prerequisites.

    Prerequisites (or their equivalents) for the certificate include the following.

    • CS:1210 Computer Science I: Fundamentals
    • MATH:1850 Calculus I
    • MATH:1860 Calculus II
    • MATH:2700 Introduction to Linear Algebra
    • STAT:2010 Statistical Methods and Computing or STAT:2020 Probability and Statistics for the Engineering and Physical Sciences

    The Certificate in Large Data Analysis requires the following course work.

    • Level I (6 s.h.)

                     ◦  MATH:3800/CS:3700 Elementary Numerical Analysis

                     ◦  STAT:3200/IE:3760/IGPI:3200 Applied Linear Regression

    • Level II (6 s.h.)

            Two of these:

                     ◦  CS:4700/MATH:4860 High Performance and Parallel Computing

                     ◦  MATH:4820/CS:4720 Optimization Techniques

                     ◦  MSCI:3200 Database Management

                     ◦  STAT:4580/IGPI:4580 Data Visualization and Data Technologies

    • Level III (3 s.h.)

            One of these:

                     ◦  CS:5430 Machine Learning

                     ◦  CS:5630 Cloud Computing Technology

                     ◦  IE:4172 Big Data Analytics

                     ◦  MSCI:3500 Data Mining

                     ◦  MSCI:4480/CS:4480/ECE:4480 Knowledge Discovery

                     ◦  STAT:4540/IGPI:4540 Statistical Learning

    • Capstone Course (3 s.h.)

            This course:

                     ◦  CS:4740/IGPI:4740/MATH:4740/STAT:4740 Large Data Analysis (must be taken within 30 s.h. of graduation)


    Sample plans of study for the following majors shown below. These are meant simply to be a guide for how you might complete your major and the Large Data Analysis Certificate.

    Students majoring in other Departments and Programs can also join the Certificate program.


    Affiliated faculty

    Advisory Board


    Related Activity: Big Data Summer School


    Support from the National Science Foundation

    Some faculty have NSF funding to support undergraduate students doing research on large data analytics during the academic year. More information about the grant is here.