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Data Analytics May 25 2023
6 Essential Terms to Understand in Data Analytics

Data analytics is a highly complex (but fulfilling) career, and with so many blocks of big data to be interpreted on a daily basis, it’s important to familiarise yourself with the different essential terms that are regularly used in this industry — not only does it make your work more efficient, it also enables you to better understand your work whilst appearing even more professional and knowledgeable to your colleagues. If you’re considering a career in data analytics in Singapore, here are some key terms you should be familiar with that, fortunately, will also be covered in our data analytics course.




a person studying data analytics course


The most common term — it’s even in your career’s namesake — is analytics, and within it are three different subtypes. Like the name suggests, analytics is the business of analysing, and in your line of work, this is often done on data acquired by your organisation. For instance, you might be asked to identify why a particular marketing campaign isn’t doing as well as it should based on data derived from it. You’re drawing insights from raw data that can help you (and the organisation) refine business strategies moving forward. You might eventually also move on to big data analytics, that is deriving conclusions from an even larger set of data (think nationwide, for example). This will be the bulk of your work in data analytics in Singapore.


Descriptive Analytics


As its name suggests, descriptive analytics is simply put, an objective description of the data you have gleaned — 30% of conversions are young mothers; 20% new families; and so on. Essentially, you’re simplifying given data into something that stakeholders can understand.


Predictive Analytics


Predictive analytics uses data gained over a long period of time to check for trends that can be used in forecasting with probabilities. In big data analytics, data scientists may also use advanced techniques like statistical processes and machine learning to forecast long-term trends like weather, climate changes, and so on.


Prescriptive Analytics


Through prescriptive analytics, you will identify elements and factors that impact results, both positively and negatively, and then suggest strategies that could potentially result in the best outcome in future campaigns. In big data analytics, this is used by executives to make data-driven decisions by considering the impacts of various actions. This is an extremely important process where your conclusions could seriously impact the organisation you work for. Equip yourself with a data analytics course to maximise your accuracy.


Machine Learning


a robot looking at a data analytics


Machine learning is a method of conceptualising and implementing systems that can learn, adjust, and improve based on the data that is being fed to them. These systems utilise predictive and statistical algorithms to learn and continually zero in on optimal behaviour and insights, constantly improving as more data is being fed to them. This is essential to services like fraud detection.




a data analytics algorithm shown on screen


No analytics can be made without algorithms, a mathematical formula or statistical process used to analyse data. An algorithm is a set of instructions that you give to a computer so it can take values and manipulate them into something more usable. Its complexity ranges from finding and removing every comma in a paragraph, to building equations that predict trends. As you embark on a career in data analytics in Singapore, you will inevitably be able to experiment with the endless possibilities that algorithms have in analysing all manner of data.


Get a head start on your career in data analytics in Singapore with Smartcademy’s data analytics course, where you will be equipped with all the essential skills needed to thrive in your organisation. Eligible Singaporeans or PRs can get up to 90% IBF Funding*, balance fees payable by SkillsFuture Credit too. For more information on our data analytics course, please visit our website