PAPP 5346. BIG DATA AND PUBLIC POLICY ANALYSIS. 3 Hours.
An examination of the data competencies and quantitative techniques necessary for policy analysis, with a special emphasis on big data and policy analysis. Increasingly, the rise and aggregation of what is commonly referred to as "big data" has raised many questions about the potential of this data for informing public policy as well as the tools and techniques appropriate for analysis. This course focuses on questions as to what constitutes big data, what sources of big data have relevance for public policy analysis, and concerns related to generalizability, reliability and validity. The course presumes a basic understanding of the basic statistical and research techniques taught in PAPP 5302 and PAPP 5342 (or equivalents from other departments). It builds on this foundation to analyze the tools and techniques appropriate for big data analysis in the field of public policy. The purpose of the course is to prepare students to understand what constitutes big data and evaluate the potential and limitations of its use in policy analysis. Students will be responsible for analyzing a source of big data, evaluating its research potential, and communicating the results of the analysis in a professional manner.