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University College Cork to host the Elements of AI online course in Ireland

30 Oct 2020

“We want to deliver free AI education to at least 1% of the Irish population”

The free Elements of AI online course will be hosted in Ireland by University College Cork.

The Elements of AI is a free massive open online course (MOOC) developed by the University of Helsinki and the technology company Reaktor. The announcement was made at the Future Human conference held in Dublin this week. An Irish language version of the course will also be released in the new year.

Since its establishment, more than 545,000 people from over 170 countries have taken the Elements of AI. Approximately 40% of those have been women, which is more than double the average for computer science courses in general. The objective of Elements of AI was to teach 1% of the population of Finland the basics of artificial intelligence. As part of the recent Finnish Presidency of the Council of the EU, Finland committed to making the course available across the EU to educate at least 1% of the EU population in AI.

In Ireland the course will be supported by the School of Computer Science & Information Technology at UCC under the leadership of Professor Barry O’Sullivan and Dr. Derek Bridge. The objective is, again, to deliver free AI education to at least 1% of the Irish population. In completing the course students will become familiar with many key concepts from the field of artificial intelligence. The course is open to everyone, regardless of background. All that is necessary is a way of accessing the internet. Those who complete the Elements of AI through the dedicated Irish portal will be provided with a certificate of completion from UCC.

In announcing the launch of Elements of AI in Ireland, the lead tutor and founder of the course, Professor Teemu Roos said: “We are delighted about being able to join forces with an institution such as UCC. They are in a great position to reach Irish audiences and boost AI-awareness in Ireland. We also hope that through this initiative, we can strengthen ties between Finland and Ireland in terms of both academic as well as business collaboration.”

UCC’s Interim President, Professor John O’Halloran said “The online delivery of courses maximises the reach of education and is a strategic priority for University College Cork. Translating research into curriculum to enable a better world is critical to our mission. Professor Barry O’Sullivan, Dr. Derek Bridge and their teams at UCC have been leaders in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and it is only natural we would offer online education in this key topic to everyone in Ireland. We’re delighted to support the delivery of the Elements of AI in Ireland to enable a deeper understanding of AI: one of the most transformative and important technologies in the world today.’

Professor Barry O’Sullivan, co-lead tutor of Elements of AI in Ireland, said: “We’re delighted to bring this course to Ireland. It is a wonderful opportunity for everyone to really get to understand what AI is all about. It would be really great to see families, friends, and co-workers coming together to take this course online, especially as we start into the uniquely challenging winter of 2020. This is a course that is really worthwhile and everyone will find it extremely rewarding.There is no better moment than now to start on your artificial intelligence journey.”

Dr. Derek Bridge, co-lead tutor of Elements of AI in Ireland, said: “We at UCC are excited to bring the Elements of Artificial Intelligence course to Ireland. It is a unique offering. It is open-to-all. Study online, at your own pace. Get a certificate, with the possibility of having your learning recognized by UCC. Learn how AI works - it’s clever, but not magic! Become acquainted with AI’s advantages and disadvantages, its strengths and its limitations. Discuss these issues online with other students. All of this - and it’s free!“

Anyone interested in signing-up for this course should visit

University College Cork

Coláiste na hOllscoile Corcaigh

College Road, Cork T12 K8AF