We’re surrounded by data. When you swipe your card at a grocery store, scroll through social media, or shop online, you send tiny scraps of data to companies and marketers, who then use that data to better design and market their products and services. Brands and businesses rely on data to drive many of their most important decisions, so data analysts are in high demand. Job opportunities in this field are growing rapidly, so whether you major in IT or computer science or gain data analysis skills through self-study, you’re likely to get a great return on your investment.
How We Picked the Best Books for Learning About Data Analysis
To create our list of the best data analysis books, we started with a list of 69 books that we gathered from Reddit recommendations, Goodreads, and The New York Times’ bestseller list (among other “best of” lists published on the internet). We researched these books and narrowed them down to this list of 20 based on how accessible they are, how useful they are, and whether someone interested in the field of data analysis would benefit from it. On this list, you’ll find books suited to beginners and experienced professionals alike.
The 20 Best Data Analysis Books
Data analysts are among the most in-demand professionals, but sometimes the amount of information you need to learn can seem overwhelming. These books can help. They cover a wide range of topics, from machine learning and big data to artificial intelligence (AI), business analytics, and Python. Whether you’re an absolute beginner or a veteran IT professional, these books will equip you with the most up-to-date data analysis knowledge and skills.
Data Science for Business: What You Need to Know About Data Mining and Data-Analytic Thinking, 1st Edition by Foster Provost and Tom FawcettBuy Now
Our top pick for best data analysis books is Foster Provost and Tom Fawcett’s Data Science for Business, which teaches you the ins and outs of the “data-analytic thinking” needed to extract useful insights from data and apply them to your business. The book walks you through the steps for using data analysis to guide business decisions, whether you’re a seasoned professional or a new candidate on the job market.
Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work, and Think by Viktor Mayer-Schönberger and Kenneth CukierBuy Now
Big Data is the first book on this highly timely subject: it teaches you what big data is, how and by whom big data is used, and what that means for you. The book offers a practical and optimistic look at the big data revolution, which, according to the authors, is only just beginning.
Business unIntelligence: Insight and Innovation Beyond Analytics and Big Data by Barry DevlinBuy Now
Barry Devlin’s Business unIntelligence is a manual for the contemporary world of business, a world in which you must make decisions at the speed of thought using a combination of logic and intuition. The book contains many new models that business and IT professionals can use to support company growth into the future.
Artificial Intelligence: A Guide for Thinking Humans by Melanie MitchellBuy Now
Written by award-winning author and experienced computer scientist Melanie Mitchell, Artificial Intelligence: A Guide for Thinking Humans separates fact from fiction and lays out the current landscape of AI. The book also addresses the promise and potential dangers of AI’s continued growth, and anecdotes, humor, and personal observations are peppered throughout the text.
Business Data Science: Combining Machine Learning and Economics to Optimize, Automate, and Accelerate Business Decisions by Matt TaddyBuy Now
Business Data Science is a practical guide to data science that weaves together insights from business, economics, and statistical analyses to help you understand your customers, frame decisions, and increase value. The book can serve as an introduction for beginners and a reference text for those well-versed in business data science.
Creating Value With Social Media Analytics by Gohar F. KhanBuy Now
Creating Value with Social Media Analytics is all about understanding social media analytics and harnessing their power to achieve your business goals. The book is full of concepts, strategies, tools, tutorials, and case studies that brands and businesses can use to identify and better market to their customers. The book is accessible for students and people without a tech background.
Data Analytics Made Accessible: 2022 Edition by Anil MaheshwariBuy Now
As the title suggests, Data Analytics Made Accessible is a reader-friendly guide to data mining for beginners and for those who don’t want to be bogged down by overly technical language. The author structures the chapters around a typical one-semester university course, but you can also use the book for self-study. Real-world case studies anchor the concepts and make them easier to grasp.
Python for Data Analysis: Data Wrangling with Pandas, NumPy, and IPython, 2nd Edition by Wes McKinneyBuy Now
Python for Data Analysis provides you with clear, comprehensive instructions for manipulating, processing, cleaning, and crunching data sets using Python. The book is best suited to data scientists who want to expand their repertoire to Python; readers should have a working knowledge of data analysis before diving in.
Too Big to Ignore: The Business Case for Big Data by Phil SimonBuy Now
Phil Simon’s Too Big to Ignore explains why big data is such a big deal and how it affects nearly every aspect of our present-day lives. The book provides accessible, jargon-free insights for anyone who wants to understand and harness the power of big data, especially business executives, entrepreneurs, and industry leaders.
A Practitioner’s Guide to Business Analytics by Randy BartlettBuy Now
Written by a veteran business analyst, A Practitioner’s Guide to Business Analytics is a how-to guide for leaders who want to evolve their businesses from a traditional corporate structure to an analytics-driven environment. The book is full of real-world insights and practical lessons learned from business analytics successes and failures.
Data Smart: Using Data Science to Transform Information into Insight by John W. ForemanBuy Now
In Data Smart, author John Foreman walks readers step by step through the process of transforming data into actionable insights, using the accessible form of a spreadsheet as an example. The book is accessible to nontech people and gradually builds to more difficult knowledge and skills, allowing readers to build a solid foundation.
Deep Medicine: How Artificial Intelligence Can Make Healthcare Human Again by Eric TopolBuy Now
Written by one of the nation’s most well-respected physicians, Deep Medicine explores AI’s potential to revolutionize medicine and health care for the better. The book lays out the myriad ways AI can foreseeably empower doctors and drastically improve patient care and is a worthwhile read for health care professionals or anyone with a vested interest in medical care.
Developing Analytic Talent: Becoming a Data Scientist by Vincent GranvilleBuy Now
Developing Analytic Talent is a resource for anyone looking to land a job as a data scientist or seeking to hire a data scientist. The book not only walks you through the key concepts and skills of data science but also includes insights about what employers are looking for as well as sample resumes, interview questions, job descriptions, and salary ranges.
Lean Analytics: Use Data to Build a Better Startup Faster by Alistair Croll and Benjamin YoskovitzBuy Now
Alistair Croll and Benjamin Yoskovitz’s Lean Analytics helps startups measure and analyze as they grow so they can successfully carve out a niche for their business and meet the needs of an untapped market. This book lays out practical steps that can take your startup from the idea phase to product/market fit and more.
Naked Statistics: Stripping the Dread from the Data by Charles WheelanBuy Now
Written by the bestselling author of Naked Economics, the follow-up text Naked Statistics strips away the jargon, tedium, and “dread” from data analysis and offers an accessible foray into the increasingly alluring world of statistics. Written in a witty, conversational tone and packed with interesting case studies, the book will appeal to anyone from students and hobbyists to professionals.
Numsense! Data Science for the Layman: No Math Added by Annalyn Ng and Kenneth SooBuy Now
Numsense! is a gentle introduction to data science and its algorithms, written in layman’s terms with no required math. The book can be used as a reference text at top universities and is sold in over 85 countries. Each algorithm has its own chapter, complete with case studies, showing you how it works in the real world.
Practical Statistics for Data Scientists: 50+ Essential Concepts Using R and Python, 2nd Edition by Peter Bruce, Andrew Bruce, and Peter GedeckBuy Now
Unlike most introductory statistics books, Practical Statistics for Data Scientists is written specifically for data scientists, curating statistical concepts and methods that data scientists need to understand. The book is best suited to readers who are familiar with the R or Python programming languages and who have a basic understanding of statistics.
Rebooting AI: Building Artificial Intelligence We Can Trust by Gary Marcus and Ernest DavisBuy Now
In Rebooting AI, longtime AI researchers Gary Marcus and Ernest Davis lay out what we will need to do to bridge the gap between current AI and the vast, complex powers of the human mind. They offer a clear, commonsense assessment of the present-day state of the field and an optimistic view of what the next generation of AI can do for the future of humanity.
Storytelling with Data: A Data Visualization Guide for Business Professionals by Cole Nussbaumer KnaflicBuy Now
Storytelling with Data provides you with a foundational understanding of data visualization and explains how to use data to communicate effectively. The book teaches you how to apply narrative fundamentals to storytelling with data so you can craft a message that resonates with your audience. You also learn how to incorporate the principles of design into your data visualization and storytelling.
The Art of Statistics: How to Learn from Data by David SpiegelhalterBuy Now
Written by world-renowned statistician David Spiegelhalter, The Art of Statistics is a comprehensive guide to statistical thinking that teaches readers how to evaluate and draw insights from data. The book illustrates how to reason and problem-solve like a statistician, even if you have no background in statistics, economics, data analysis, or related fields.