What is Data Analytics?
As we can see that the term “Data Analytics” is made up of two words data and analytics.
Let me first tell you what the above two words mean.
Data — Data is a plural word and its singular form is datum. Datum is a latin word which means “given thing”. Data can contain some information or not related to the problem.
Two types of data: 1) Quantitative data- data expressed as numbers
2) Qualitative data- data which is expressed as categories
Analytics — Analytics is a science of analysis wherein we are concerned to find meaningful results from a given data using various techniques.
Now what does it mean together as a term.
Data Analytics — Given a data set, find out the information which your data contains. In doing so, the process of examining the data set is known as data analytics.
In data analytics you will find answers to question using data by extracting information from the given data.
You can ask now for an example where we do that so here is an example-
In School when passing from let’s say class 5th to class 6th, the school decides to divide students based on their marks (Previous Performance) to assign them sections. Decision will be like say Section A for the Good students and so on. So the school will collect your past performance data in all subjects and will decide the section for students. Here the data is the students Record in academics and school then groups students.
Data which we have is in raw form so question now arises how do we extract information from the given data set. We will have to transform the data to do that. Some steps to do that are:
1. First think of What is that you want to find out.
2. List all the variables which will help you find answer to the question.
3. Remove the unnecessary things from your data.
4. Explore the data. Draw plots and find out relation between variables.
5. If you have missing values take care of it.
The main point here is that you have to fight with your data to find out meaningful insights. Now we can stop here or we can go more further. The type of analytics in which we get information from previous records or past data is known as Descriptive Analytics. The steps mentioned above comes under descriptive analytics. Now if you want to predict future outcomes with the help of information you get from past data, the process to do that is known as Predictive Analytics. This can be done by building a model which will tell you what will happen next. One another type of analytics called Prescriptive Analytics which helps us to choose the best model from different models which is the most suitable one.
To Summarize: Data analytics is the process of gaining information by examining a data set. Types of data analytics are descriptive, predictive and prescriptive analytics.
Next we will discuss about each type of analytics in detail.