8-Week Course
8 Continuing Education Units
70.25 PDUs
80 Military Clock Hours

About the Course

Organizations have an increasing amount of data at hand, but interpreting that data to make informed business decisions is a crucial next step in data analysis.

Villanova’s online Essentials of Data Visualization course helps remove the clutter of complex information and allows you to build powerful at-a-glance dashboards that tell your data’s story and monitor the progress of your company goals at all levels: strategic, tactical and operational.


Combining Theory and Practice

Villanova’s Essentials of Data Visualization course combines theory and practice with a focus on real-life application. You’ll gain hands-on experience by building at-a-glance dashboards within two industry-leading data visualization tools, Tableau and Qlik. The dashboards you’ll create highlight trends, patterns, relationships and outliers through compelling dashboards, charts, graphs and diagrams.

The Villanova College of Professional Studies provides hands on access to Qlik and Tableau during the class.

Earn a Digital Badge
Villanova students will earn a digital badge when they successfully complete an individual course or full certificate program. These badges help to emphasize their skills and commitment to professional development and enables them to easily share and display the badge on a resume and/or social media.
8 Week Course
Week 1
Introduction to Performance Dashboards and Scorecards
  • Importance of performance dashboards
  • Benefits of using well-built dashboards
  • Benefits of business performance management
  • Tradeoffs that exists between depth and breadth of analysis
  • Communicating business analysis information
  • Managing stakeholder collaboration
Week 2
How to Align Business and IT, and Types of Performance Dashboards
  • Causes between the misalignment between the business and IT
  • Tactics used to align the business and IT
  • The three different types of dashboards
  • Elements that compose the main types of dashboards
Week 3
Understanding Strategic, Tactic and Operational Dashboards
  • Concepts of each type of dashboard
  • Key elements for dashboard success
  • Understanding the main buttons that exist on a Qlik app
  • How to build graphics using Qlik
  • Trends for the future of dashboards
Week 4
Creating Data Visualizations with Qlik
  • The three phases of a project according to Eckerson
  • Success factors behind each of the phases of the project
  • Understanding the importance of stakeholder involvement in a project
  • Understanding why KPIs need to be monitored, controlled and revised
  • Creating data visualizations with Qlik
Week 5
Best Practices for creating Performance Metrics and Performance Dashboards
  • Understanding the different types of metrics
  • Understanding the components of insightful metrics
  • The characteristics of effective performance metrics
  • Explaining the importance of data quality when it comes to building KPIs
  • How to choose the right graph
  • The importance of building prototypes
  • Best practices on the building of displays
Week 6
Creating Dashboards and Data Visualizations with Tableau
  • Gestalt Principles of Perception
  • Applying Gestalt Principles of Perception to storytelling and data visualization
  • The main components of Tableau’s screen
  • How to connect to a data source using Tableau
Week 7
Opportunities for Data Visualization Reporting in the Industry
  • Strategies to ensure adoption
  • Different types of user training
  • How to optimize performance by using metrics
  • The importance of coaching during the implementation process
Week 8
Other Software packages and future trends
  • The main software available in the Industry
  • Understanding the capabilities of each software
  • Using Gartner’s Magic Quadrant to identify the different software available
  • The importance of coaching during the implementation process
Learning Objectives
Skills Learned
Communication Information Technology Data Analysis Process Management
What You’ll Study
  • What Dashboards and Scorecards Are, How They Are Created and Why They Add Value to an Organization
  • The Main Differences Between the Different Types of Dashboards and Their Use
  • Best Practices in Data Representation Techniques
  • Applying Data Gathering Methods to Creating Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) That Are Aligned with the Strategic Goals of the Organization
  • Using Tools Such as Tableau and Qlik to Build Dashboards and Visualizations
  • Best Practices on How to Build KPIs, Visualizations and Dashboards
  • The Importance of Storytelling with Data
  • Identifying Trends in the Data Visualization Industry
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Javier Leon

Javier Leon, MBA, MS Business Intelligence and Analytics, MS in Food Marketing, PMP, is a project manager for the largest mango importer and distributor of the U.S. Javier’s career has had a focus on ERP implementations, databases, data warehouses, business intelligence tools, business analytics and data visualization software. Javier has a passion for the academia and his primary goal is to see his students succeed.

Who Should Register?

Whether you work in tech, finance, healthcare, government or any other industry, the need for data visualization is growing. Regardless of your role and the size of your organization, the ability to visualize your data and tell its story can help you and your organization make informed decisions to drive success.

Tuition & Payment

Total Course Cost


Course offerings and associated prices are subject to change without prior notice. Pricing for multi-course certificate programs varies depending on course selection. View the Professional Education Catalog for more information on the courses and programs.

Payment Options

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