Data science rendering

Monthly CU seminars focus on targeted online ads, other cyber mysteries

by Michaela Carpenter, Public Relations Writer


The ability of modern technology to automatically tag friends in photos or place ads online from recently visited sites has piqued the curiosity of millions around the world. The heart of applications like these is a field known as data science, and a team of Cedarville University professors is hosting monthly, open-to-the-public seminars to educate and equip people on this topic.

The next seminar will take place on Monday, November 13, at 5 p.m. in Room 345 of the Engineering and Science Center. Dr. John Delano, associate professor of information technology management, will introduce Structured Query Language (SQL) and explain how to use it to prepare data for analysis.

Data science involves “big data” and the computer programs that sort through the data and put it in a useful form. The field has grown during the past decade as companies like Google and Amazon develop software to work with large amounts of information, such as sites typically visited by online users, length of stay on sites and pages opened. Many of these software tools are now becoming available to the public as well.

The team hosting these seminars includes Dr. Steven Gollmer, professor of physics; Dr. Tim Tuinstra, associate professor of electrical engineering; Dr. Mark Gathany, associate professor of biology; Dr. Ashley Holland, assistant professor of mathematics; and Delano.

The first seminar provided an introduction to the topic, while each succeeding seminar will address specific data science tools and techniques. Each session will feature a presentation on the topic and a workshop where attendees try the software for themselves.

“Our goal is primarily to assist those who don’t know a lot about this subject and to help them take the next step of understanding,” Gollmer said. “And then for those of us who do have a background, we can start developing a network on campus so we can help each other as we think through the topic of data science.”

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 3,963 undergraduate, graduate, and online students in more than 150 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings, and leading student satisfaction ratings. For more information about the University, visit www.cedarville.edu.