The short of it: USC does not release data establishing the success rate of this 24-week program. Therefore, it is an untested commodity with a hefty price tag of $12,500. If a program that teaches data analytics cannot substantiate its value with data,... Read More
The process of applying: On October 15, 2017, I requested information on USC's website. Within a day, I received a call from an admissions counselor, who asked me about my goals for the program. She told me that the program is for "a select group of  students." She said that if my "career goals align with the program," then I will be allowed to apply. I have to pass an assessment with a score of at least 70 percent, she said. If I am accepted, I can pay to secure a seat in the class.
Tuition: If paid in full by November 25, 2017, the cost is $11,500. After this date, full tuition comes to $12,500.
Credit value: This course terminates in the issuance of a certificate of completion. You do not earn transferable credit.
On-time completion rate: I asked the admissions counselor for the on-time completion rate (how many enrolled students actually complete the program). She said that she did not have substantiating data. She offered anecdotal evidence of filling six classes, but she could not recall if anyone dropped out. (Notice that not recalling whether students dropped out is not the same as knowing that no students dropped out.)
Students employed in the field within nine months of completion: I asked how many students are employed in the field within nine months after completing the program and at what salary. The admissions counselor said that USC does not provide that data because, she said, the school has seen other programs "misrepresent their data." You would think that USC's approach would be to produce more representative data, avoiding the inaccuracies that it sees in other schools' data, but, no, USC has chosen to publish no data, leaving prospective students in the dark about the program's value. I ended the call and explained why I would not be enrolling in the program.
Bottom Line: Avoid this program until USC supports the price tag with verifiable data. Otherwise, you have no reason to expect a return on your investment.