Student Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

Spring 5-18-2020

Document Type


Degree Name

B.B.A. with honors

Honors Designation


Program of Study

Computer Information Systems - Data Analytics



First Advisor

Arturo Castellanos

Second Advisor

Kevin Craig

Third Advisor

Zeda Li


The healthcare industry is primed for a massive transformation in the coming decades due to emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning. With a practical application to the UNOS (United Network of Organ Sharing) database, this Thesis seeks to investigate how Machine Learning and analytic methods may be used to predict one-year heart transplantation outcomes. This study also sought to improve on predictive performances from prior studies by analyzing both Donor and Recipient data. Models built with algorithms such as Stacking and Tree Boosting gave the highest performance, with AUC’s of 0.6810 and 0.6804, respectively. In this work, a roadmap was created that justifies the need for these technologies in healthcare. In application, the data was prepared, models were built using advanced algorithms, and important variables were selected. These steps were continuously done with validation from experienced clinicians. To yield greater insights in this study, the dataset was split row-wise by factors such as LVAD Support, Donor/Recipient Gender Combinations, and Time Period; this rendered 8 new datasets for analysis. This work explores the trade-off between interpretability and performance in applying analytic methods in a real-world problem in this domain. Finally, forward looking industry implications are discussed.



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