1 Courses Required

Numbers always tell a story, but without skilled interpreters, those stories can be hard to read. 

That’s where Data Visualization and Communications professionals come in. By turning data into pictures, graphs, charts, infographics, dashboards and maps, decision makers can comprehend information quickly, see relationships and patterns and identify trends. 

The results?

  • Data is understandable
  • Insights are gained
  • Decisions are made

Data visualization skills are becoming increasingly necessary across many career types, regardless of the industry—government, finance, marketing, consumer goods, service, education and more. 

The SMU Data Visualization and Communication Certificate program will help you to improve your data visualization skills through introduction of principles and best practices, coupled with hands-on exercises and projects. Gain experience with multiple tools and explore fundamentals of gathering, analyzing and presenting data. Learn how to determine which visualization styles are best suited for different types of information, and how to pair visualizations with storytelling and other communication techniques to create compelling presentations for different audiences.

Key Benefits

  • Learn to apply data visualization skills with communication techniques
  • Understand the possibilities data contain so that you can create a visual story 
  • Communicate trends, relationships and patterns in multiple formats
  • Acquire skills to use data through a variety of visualization tools 
  • Understand the elements of storytelling and why they matter in business 
  • Identify the appropriate format for the data you are work with – infographic, graph, chart and so on. 
  • Complete a capstone project to include in your business portfolio  

Who should attend?

  • Marketing professionals
  • Data analysts
  • Data scientists
  • Mid-level managers who need to review and present data 
  • Working professionals in a variety of fields who interpret, present and share data with stakeholders of all kinds

Where are these courses offered?

This SMU Data Visualization and Communications Certificate is completely online. You will never be required to attend a brick-and-mortar classroom and you can complete your entire course from the comfort of your own home or office.

Students will meet as a class once a week with the instructors for discussions, review of concepts, and to answer questions. Students will also have reading, videos, activities and quizzes to take on their own time in between real-time, online meetings. 

Why Choose SMU?

SMU PRO’s certificate is the only program in Texas that combines data visualization and communication into a single program.

  • Small class sizes allow for meaningful, individual interactions with instructors who are experts on the subject
  • All instructors are seasoned professionals working in the field

Students will have a real-time online meeting once a week for 1.5 hours and approximately 3.5 hours of out-of-class videos, activities and reading, which altogether fulfill a total of 5 hours-per-week committed to the program. 

Certificate Components

  • Foundations of Data Visualization
  • Storytelling in Business
  • Applying Design Principles to Data Visualization
  • Delivering Effective Presentations
  • Presenting with Data: Tools and Best Practices
  • Infographics: Design and Publishing 
  • Dashboards: Tools and Best Practices
  • Final Project


  • Priority Rate: $3895 (expires two weeks before start date)
  • Standard Registration: $4145
  • Fees include tuition and textbooks

Payments and Financing

  • Student Loans
    Students may qualify for a Smart Options Continuing Education Student Loan, offered by Sallie Mae. Your Sallie Mae Loan application must be completed and approved 14 days before the first day of the program. Loan cannot exceed the cost of tuition. Contact our admissions team for details.
  • Discounts
    • Members of the SMU community (faculty, staff, students and alumni) may receive discounted tuition.
    • Nonprofit organizations and groups may qualify for discounts.
    • Contact a program advisor using the form on the right, for more details.
    • Corporate discounts may be available. Please call 972-473-3469 for information.

Next Steps

  • Talk one-on-one with an advisor to answer your specific questions. Call us at 214-768-1086 or email us smupro@smu.edu
  • Complete and submit the application online.
  • SMU will confirm your acceptance and facilitate your payment.

More Info: https://www.smu.edu/Pro/Certificates/Certificates-Online/data-visualization-and-communications

Additional Details


Data Visualization and Storytelling Certificate Program

Please click "Apply Now" to begin your application. You will be required to log in or create an account if you do not already have one.

If you need any further assistance, contact the SMU PRO office at 214-768-2273.


Required fields are indicated by .