People Analytics (M.S.)
Prepare for a career in the rapidly-growing field of people analytics. You'll study human behavior and effectiveness in the workplace, learn to curate and analyze data, and use this data to inform sound human resource decisions.
People analytics professionals support human resource practices such as:
- attracting, selecting, and developing talent
- promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion
- tracking employee engagement and well-being
This program teaches critical skills, including:
- understanding human behavior and effectiveness in the workplace
- how to design and evaluate human resource practices related to recruitment and selection, training and development, and performance management
- principles of measurement, data management, data visualization, and predictive analytics
- using statistical methods to make sound decisions and evaluate program effectiveness
Read about internship and employment activities of our students and graduates in the IO Program newsletter.
The M.S. in People Analytics offers a unique integration of training in industrial-organizational psychology with a strong foundation in data science and modern analytic methods. In addition to the separate courses in data science, psychometrics and statistics, applications of analytic methods are integrated throughout the coursework on employee selection, performance management, and the assessment of organizational climate and employee engagement. A required internship will provide experience with real-word applications of analytics in an HR context.
Our graduates are prepared to enter the workforce or move on to advanced degrees in psychometrics or industrial-organizational psychology. Students choosing to enter the workforce are well-prepared for jobs such as:
- People analyst/people scientist
- Talent management specialist
- Survey researcher
- Diversity, equity and equity specialist
Disclaimer for prospective students, please read.
Prerequisite courses include CS 201 and CS 401, or completion of equivalent courses with grade of A.
The M.S. in People Analytics is a 33 credit hour degree designed to be completed in two years. The curriculum features 15 credit hours of industrial-organizational psychology coursework, including three foundation courses and two electives that allow students to develop advanced knowledge of an area of specialization. Fifteen credit hours of statistics and data science courses ensure a strong foundation in quantitative methods.
All students complete an internship, which corresponds to three months of part-time field work. You might choose to intern at a consulting firm or in the human resources department of a major organization. From Fortune 500 corporations to consulting firms and nonprofit organizations, the Chicago metropolitan area will provide you with ample choices for your internship experience.
The Master of Science in People Analytics program accepts applications for fall entrance only. Priority will be given to applications submitted with supporting documents by February 15; applications received after this date will be considered through May 1 until available spots are filled. Minimum requirements for admission include:
- Bachelor's degree including evidence of familiarity with the field of psychology, including research methods and statistics. For those without this background, we offer pathways to obtain proficiency prior to starting the MS program.
- Minimum GPA of 3.0
- Minimum TOEFL IBT of 100 (IELTS of 7), if required
- 2-3 letters of recommendation that provide evidence of aptitude for learning, communication skills, time management, and motivation. This will commonly involve at least one letter from an instructor or academic mentor familiar with your work in a classroom and/or research setting.
- Professional statement—tell us your future plans and why you want to attend the People Analytics program
- Transcripts from all post-secondary institutions (applications must be uploaded into the online application system)
- All applications are evaluated on the basis of such factors as GPA, recommendations, and the professional statement
Limited funding opportunities are available for students, including teaching and graduate assistantships, and scholarships.
The industrial-organizational psychology/people analytics division awards a limited number of one-year, partial-tuition scholarships to a number of students based on merit.
Students can apply for teaching assistantships after the first year. Teaching assistants receive partial tuition reimbursement and a monthly stipend. These positions are quarter-time (10 hours per week) and are based on students’ performance academically and their engagement in the program.
Research assistantships are often available to support applied research and service projects. The number and amount of funding varies from year to year.