Artificial Intelligence (AI) is widely adopted in our society: we find applications of AI ranging from cars that detect pedestrians to Apple’s virtual assistant, Siri. Such applications use AI techniques to interpret information from a wide variety of sources and use it to enable intelligent, goal-directed behaviour.

The Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam’s AI Master programme offers a program that is oriented towards Hybrid intelligence, where AI systems and humans collaborate. You can study a technical approach to AI, focusing on the understanding, analysis and development of novel AI algorithms, and you can study AI technology from a societal or human perspective, looking into questions such as “how can we develop and evaluate computer-based technology that exploits knowledge about human functioning?” and “how can human and AI-technology complement each other?”.

Artificial Intelligence
The AI master focuses on the application of AI in socially aware computing, highlighting the analysis, development and application of new AI techniques to develop solutions that understand and can reason about their social context. Its applications are highly diverse, and range from optimizing internet searches to supporting elderly people in their struggle with dementia. You will learn how human behavior can be interpreted based on sensor data and computational models of physiological and cognitive processes. You will gain experience in integrating such models in dedicated intelligent applications that support humans in their daily lives, making these systems truly aware of human functioning.

In the specialization phase you can continue to study AI techniques in more depth, building on the compulsory courses on the core topics in AI and choose elective advanced courses in these or more specific AI topics (e.g. Planning and Reinforcement learning). In the specialization phase you can also study relevant courses with respect to a particular application area (e.g. support of people to have a healthy lifestyle , or elderly care) or a relevant scientific discipline (e.g. psychology, sociology, movement sciences, biomedical sciences, criminology, etc.). Another option is to continue in the specialized track “Cognitive Science”. This track includes a further in depth understanding of cognitive aspects of AI.

Track Cognitive Science
Immerse yourself in the multidisciplinary study of mind and cognition. Researchers in cognitive science come from a wide range of backgrounds, including psychology, computer science, artificial intelligence, philosophy, mathematics and neuroscience. They all share the common goal of gaining a deeper understanding of the human mind, for both theoretical and practical purposes.

The track focuses on the processes that underlie human functioning from two different research perspectives: empirical work and computational modeling. The combination of these two perspectives allows for a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying human functioning. For example, empirical work may suggest a functional layout for computation models, and vice versa, results of simulations with computation models can provide suggestions for setting up specific experiments. The underlying philosophy of Cognitive Science at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is to challenge students to be knowledgeable in a wide variety of fields and techniques, all of which are related to the subject area of cognitive psychology.

The Cognitive Science track is jointly organized by the Department of Cognitive Psychology of the Faculty of Psychology and Education, and the Department of Artificial Intelligence of the Faculty of Sciences.

This is what you will be doing
VU Amsterdam offers a AI master and a special track Cognitive Science.

Master Artificial Intelligence
The focus of the Master Artificial Intelligence is Hybrid Intelligence.
Key courses of this Master are:
  • Evolutionary computing
  • Cognitive psychology and its applications
  • Multi agent systems
  • Social Robotics
  • Knowledge Representation
  • Natural Language Process Technology
  • Data Mining
  • AI & Society

Track Cognitive Science
The Cognitive Science track has an additional component of three courses to qualify for the AI Cognitive Science Diploma. A variety of courses can be used for this component:
  • Seminar Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Brain Imaging
  • Neural models of cognitive processes
  • Memory and Memory Disorders
Program taught in:
  • English

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Last updated October 26, 2018
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Sep 2020
2 years
2,083 EUR
for EEA students. €14.500 for non-EU/non-EEA students.
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