Last update: February 21, 2024 - Added Generative AI statement
The goal of the Business Analytics competition is to evaluate student teams’ ability to provide evidence-based business decision-making, while leveraging only those software resources widely available throughout the business world.
The contestants will be working on a prediction problem. The contestants will be provided with a context for the problem and a detailed description of the data, to include a data dictionary.
Teams may be made up of 1-2 people.
Friday, April 5, 2024 7:00 - 11:00 PM
Skills and Resources
Competitive teams should have the following skills.
- The contestants must have some knowledge of predictive analytics, data mining, or machine learning techniques.
- The contestants must be able to use technology to read a relatively large dataset.
- Transform the variables as needed.
- Select the appropriate technology to approach the problem.
Teams are also expected to have foundational level knowledge of accounting, finance, economics, management, SQL, and quantitative methods.
Students may use any software, including access to the Internet, to develop and implement their model.
It is expected that contestants will access the data via a MSSQL Server that will host the database that will be utilized for the event. An IP address, username, and password will be provided at the beginning of the contest. To access the data, contestants are expected to pre-install SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) (available for free at https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sql/ssms/download-sql-server-management-studio-ssms ) or HeidiSQL ( https://www.heidisql.com/download.php ) in advance of arriving at the competition site. Contestants that desire to use Excel, R, Weka, or another tool for processing and modeling the .csv and Excel files, should have that software pre-installed as well. (For R, see https://www.r-project.org; for Weka see https://www.cs.waikato.ac.nz/ml/weka/downloading.html).
The contestants will be provided with the context of the problem, and a detailed description of the data including a data dictionary. The research question will require the students to analyze the data for descriptive and inferential statistics, create a prediction model with final submission of a column vector of predictions in .csv format, and provide a brief report submitted as a .pdf file.
Judging will use the following criteria to determine each team’s score:
[Preliminary – will be finalized upon distribution of problem statement]
- 30% A vector of predictions for the test set. (to be used by the judges)
- 20% A justification explaining why the method/technique used is appropriate to the problem scenario.
- 20% A brief description of the method used
- 20% Inferential statistics about the data
- 10% Descriptive statistics about the data
Statement Regarding use of Generative AI
We—the USITCC Conference Committee and the Foundation for Information Technology Education (FITE)—recognize the impressive growth, application, and overall utility of AI in shortening the time to completion of projects both professionally and academically. The use of Generative has increased dramatically in recent years. Students, employees, and organizations are leveraging tools such as ChatGPT, Bard, DALL-E, Midjourney, and DeepMind to supplement their own skillsets and produce greater volumes of work.
With that said, we and our cooperative organizations jointly decided to prohibit/ban the use of Generative AI from the 2024 USITCC competition.
The competitions at USITCC are primarily focused on and tailored to the knowledge bases and skillsets of undergraduate students from 2 & 4-year schools. The purpose of these competitions is to gauge, test, and present appropriate challenges for this level of student understanding and the competitions also allow students to detect their own deficiencies and strengths. Students will need to possess a solid understanding of the fields they are competing in on their own merits to truly discover where their strengths and weaknesses lie, such that they may better develop themselves for the professional world in which they are seeking careers.
Therefore, usage of Generative AI to assist in the answering, production, and development of student submissions is prohibited from the competition overall. Violation of this ban may result in the forfeiture of the competitor in that competition. We reserve the right to examine competition related network traffic data during this event. Certain web domain access may be blocked as well.