LAS Big Data Summer School 2017. (Christopher Gannon/Iowa State University)
LAS Big Data Summer School 2017. (Christopher Gannon/Iowa State University)

Midwest Big Data Summer School to enhance data science skills

Researchers and other professionals who work with data can get a jump start through the 2018 Midwest Big Data Summer School hosted by Iowa State University in Ames Iowa, May 14-17, 2018.

'Big data' is a term used for data-driven discovery where the amount of data exceeds the limits of any person or individual computer to observe each data piece. In these instances, different techniques that allow for looking at the essence of the data instead of the individual pieces must be utilized.

"It leads to challenges in both how to keep that information, because it is huge, and how to compute over that information," said Hridesh Rajan, professor in the Department of Computer Science and the Kingland Professor of Data Analytics and founder of the school. "A new series of techniques is needed to be able to create a reasonable essence, if we may, that then allows a human analyst to derive some knowledge out of that essence."

Attendees will enhance their data-driven research skills through an intensive curriculum including full-day lectures on topics ranging from: data acquisition, data preprocessing, exploratory data analysis, descriptive data analysis, data analysis tools and techniques, visualization and communication, ethical issues in data science, reproducibility and repeatability, and understanding of domain/context.

Researchers and professionals can take specialized tracks on the final day of the school to focus on the subareas of Foundations of Data Science, Software Analytics, Digital Agriculture, or Big Data Applications. Each track consists of tutorials and invited lectures that highlight current research methodologies and challenges.

This unique opportunity has limited space available. Early registration costs $100 or $75 for students. Regular registration is March 14 through April 14 and costs $125 or $100 for students. During April 14 through May 14, late registration costs $150 or $125 for students. Questions can be directed to or 515.294.6222.

A limited amount of travel support is also available for non-ISU participants. Those who seek travel support must complete early registration by March 14 and also submit a travel support application.

More information is available on the website.