There’s a brand new free edX course starting next week – “Analysing and Visualising Data with Power BI”, taught by Will Thompson. It is the perfect opportunity to learn how you can start to build an education analytics system for your school\TAFE\university. I am a massive fan of using Power BI in education, because of the potential it offers to unlock institutional data and put the power of analysis into the hands of users (rather than conventional BI systems that have concentrated on putting ‘reports’ into users hands). I’ve found that an absolute beginner can produce powerful visualisations of their data in a few hours, and that an advanced user needs the same level of skills that an advanced Excel user has. Whilst there are plenty of Microsoft partners who have, or can, build educational analytics solutions customers using Power BI in education, there’s also an opportunity to create your own systems – and that’s a great way to use this course.
If you want to see what’s possible with Power BI, then watch the video below to see what I created with data from Queensland’s Open Education Data site in a couple of days (more details on how I made it here)
If you’ve got some spreadsheets of data, or data trapped across a set of different databases, then this course would be a good way to learn how to unlock it to create new ways of telling a data story.
About this course
In this course, you will learn how to connect, explore, and visualize data with Power BI.
Power BI is a cloud-based business analytics service that helps create live operational dashboards from on-premises and cloud data in one central location that you can access across a range of devices.
Power BI Desktop provides a free-form canvas for drag-and-drop data exploration as well as an extensive library of interactive visualizations, simple report creation, and fast publishing to the Power BI service.
This course is taught in short, lecture-based videos, complete with demos, quizzes, and hands-on labs. The Power BI product team will guide you through Power BI end-to-end, starting from how to connect to and import your data, author reports using Power BI Desktop, publish those reports to the Power BI service, create dashboards, and share to business users so that they can consume the dashboards through the web and their mobile devices.
What you’ll learn
- Connecting, importing, shaping and transforming data for business intelligence
- Visualizing data, authoring reports, and scheduling automated refresh of your reports
- Creating and sharing dashboards based on reports in Power BI desktop and Excel
- Using natural language queries
- Creating real time dashboards
The free edX course starts online on November 24, and runs for 4 weeks. The instructors estimate it will involve 2-4 hours per week, and then at the end you’ll get an Honor Certificate from edX that you can add to your resume, or share on Linked (or you can sign up for a Verified Certificate for $49)