Big data sounds pretty straight forward. It’s pretty much just a huge amount of data. But, did you know that to learn how to organize and analyze it, then extract it from a data set, people actually complete specialized big data courses and training?
Many companies have large amounts of data they need sorted. It could be from a programming language, numbers input into a system, or contact information of clients. With the right programs and products, this big data can help businesses streamline processes and improve operations.
In this article, we will review everything there is to know about big data and the relevant courses, training, and resources available for anyone interested in learning big data.
What Is Big Data?
To put it in simple terms, big data is large, complex data sets. It can be gathered from multiple sources, such as email lists, databases, and spreadsheets. Data sets can either be structured or unstructured. Some may get big data confused with data science sometimes, but they are not the same.
What Is Big Data Used For?
Big data can be used for many different things. Below is a list of just a few of the possible applications.
- Advertising. Big data is used to analyze data collected from advertising on social media or Google.
- Big data analytics. Using big data analytics when dealing with large sets of information ensures that no piece of information is accidentally left out.
- Entertainment, communications, and media. In these industries, there are many ways big data can be used. It is used when collecting social media analytics, gathering and analyzing customer insight, or measuring how well content is performing.
- Government. In government, huge amounts of data is generated to be used in government programs, and cyber security information, for example.
- Banking. Big data has many uses in this area. Data is collected from credit cards and can be used to catch fraudsters, identify money laundering, and mitigate risks.
Some jobs available within big data include:
Types of Big Data
Because there is so much big data out there, it is separated into three different types. Below are the three types of big data you should learn.
Structured data is easy to understand. It is data that is already organized and stored in databases. People either input this type of data into databases themselves, or machines collect the data from a server or application.
Unstructured data is when data is stored with no format. So, it is the complete opposite of structured data. Unstructured data also has two aspects. It can be generated by either people or machines. This data is usually user-generated, then captured, such as through social media activity, satellite images, audio, text, or video.
Semi-structured data is a mix of structured and unstructured data. It would have characteristics that are a mixture of the two types described above.
Learning Big Data
There are many ways for someone to learn big data. A person could take a big data course online, or opt for in-person training. However, due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, some in-person courses have been moved online temporarily.
How Long Does It Take to Learn Big Data?
There is no set time on how long it takes to learn big data. It depends solely on the person and the classes they choose to take. Some classes may take a few hours to cover basic functions, but others may take a couple of months depending on how in-depth the material is.
If you’re interested in a career in big data, it would be wise to learn as much as you can. If you love it, you may even go on to get a degree in data science and become a data scientist or data analyst.
How to Learn Big Data: Step-by-Step
If you’re looking to learn big data, follow the steps below to see what you should do before you start learning.
- Learn big data basics. The first step should be to learn the basics of big data and make sure you understand it. This includes beginning to learn data structures, Apache Hadoop and Spark, SQL, and design and analysis algorithms.
- Expand your knowledge with a certificate program. There are many certifications online in big data. Getting a certification will help you learn the structure and foundation of what big data is about. You will also learn about data abstraction and linear data structures.
- Start processing real-time data and big data. By doing this, you will learn concepts of data warehousing, batch processing, Apache Spark, and how to build pipelines.
- Courses in big data analytics. In big data analytics courses and training, you will learn how to use data analysis methods. You will also learn clustering and how to build big data visualizations.
- Earn professional certifications. Earning professional-level certifications is a great way to stay informed. If you are not looking to go to a four-year school to become a data scientist, then earning a certificate is a great way to learn about big data and become qualified for jobs.
The Best Big Data Courses and Training
Through the Internet, there are many ways you can learn about big data. All it takes is a simple Google search. When it comes to learning about big data, the amount of courses, training programs, and resources available is outstanding.
Below is a list of the best big data courses and training, both online and in-person. As mentioned above, some of the in-person classes may have been moved online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Best In-Person Big Data Courses
Below are a few in-person and real-time virtual courses.
- Working with Big Data
- Big Data Demystified: Hadoop and NoSQL for Beginners Class
- Big Data 101: A Free Class
These courses offered by General Assembly in San Francisco cover many aspects of big data. In them, you will learn about traditional data management technology, Hadoop ecosystems, and how to solve problems.
This class is taught virtually by experts who have years of experience in working with big data. Although it is virtual, the classes are live. In this class, students will study a curriculum lasting three to five weeks.
Students of the course will learn about big data and how to use Apache Hadoop software, including Hadoop cluster modes, Oozie, Spark Ecosystem, and HBase Run Modes. At the end of this class, students will participate in a project and will get a certification.
Best Online Big Data Courses
If you’re not interested in learning in a classroom or virtual classroom, there are plenty of self-paced, online big data classes out there. Below are some great online classes to get you started.
- Big Data Specialization
- Data Engineering, Big Data, and Machine Learning on GCP Specialization
- Modern Big Data Analysis with SQL Specialization
- Big Data Modeling and Management Systems
Coursera partners with many universities to provide free classes on big data. These are just a few of those offered by the massive open online course website.
In each of these classes, students will learn to analyze, collect, and store data, as well as the different data management systems, SQL, big data for analytics and machine learning for the Google Cloud Platform. Students will also gain hands-on experience by learning the necessary tools for predictive analytics and modeling.
- Fundamentals of Data Analysis for Big Data
- Learn Big Data: The Hadoop Ecosystem Masterclass
- Big Data and Hadoop for Beginners – With Hands-On!
- Intro to Big Data, Data Science and Artificial Intelligence
- Architecting Big Data Solutions
Udemy also hosts many great online programs. In the big data courses listed above, individuals will learn about big data solutions and technology, how to run univariables on datasets, big data architecture, artificial intelligence, SQL, and Hadoop.
Best Big Data Books
If learning online isn’t for you, then maybe you’d prefer to check out a book. Below is a list of books available to you if you’d rather explore big data in this format.
Big Data for Dummies – Judith S. Hurwitz, Alan Nugent, Fern Halper, and Marcia Kaufman
In this book, you will read about the complications in managing big data. It goes over how to manage data effectively, and how to find solutions and store data. It also provides many real-world examples of how to effectively manage data.
Big Data at Work: Dispelling the Myths, Uncovering the Opportunities – Thomas H. Davenport
Throughout this book, readers will learn why big data is important for businesses, including how it is used in management, consumer relations, and costs. Read about how big data can change your job, and how to hire people who can help your company in this regard.
Best Online Big Data Resources
There are many online resources for learning more about big data and its uses. Below is a list of a few of the available resources.
YouTube isn’t just for funny videos. It’s also a great online resource for learning. There are thousands of videos about big data on the platform that will help you get better informed.
Linkedin is useful for any professional. Beyond applying for jobs and networking, it also provides wonderful training courses and resources for individuals who want to learn more on a specific topic, including big data.
Should You Study Big Data?
Big data can be a difficult subject to learn, from the basic concepts to the different technology and programs used to analyze it. As mentioned above, there are many jobs available to you if you find yourself deeply interested in big data.
One of those jobs is working as a data scientist. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a data scientist makes an average of $100,560 per year in the United States. If you love working with and managing big data, then this field is a lucrative choice.
Throughout this article, CareerKarma has provided all the necessary information for anyone interested in learning about big data and considering making a career out of it.
If you’re thinking about learning big data, look over the courses, training, and resources that we have provided. Once you have a firm grasp on all the concepts, it’s time to get started in your professional career.