Course Details

The BCS Essentials Certificate in Artificial Intelligence tests a candidate’s knowledge and understanding of the terminology and the general principles. This syllabus covers the potential benefits; types of Artificial Intelligence; the basic process of Machine Learning (ML); the challenges and risks associated with an AI project, and the future of AI and Humans in work.

Course curriculum

  • 2

    1. Artificial & Human Intelligence: An Introduction & History

    • Section One Overview

    • Section 1 Contents

    • What Is Artificial Intelligence (AI)?

    • What Is Human Intelligence?

    • IQ & EQ

    • Aristotle

    • The Scientific Method

    • Timeline of AI & Machine Learning (ML)

    • Industrial Revolutions

    • Universal Design

    • Machines Learn From Data

    • Tom Mitchell's Definition of ML

    • Heuristic

    • A Human is More Than IQ & EQ

    • Identifying Objects

    • The Digital Human

    • Human Brain Inspired AI 'Deep Learning' (DL)

    • Test Your Learning - Part One

    • Summary

  • 3

    2. Examples of AI - Benefits, Challenges & Risks

    • Section Two Overview

    • Section 2 Contents

    • 3 Steps/Components in a ML Project

    • Research and Development - R&D

    • Benefits of Using AI and ML in Engineering

    • Benefits of Using AI and ML in Health and Social Care

    • Benefits of Using AI and ML in Logistics

    • Benefits of Using AI and ML in Entertainment

    • Benefits of Using AI and ML in Sales and Marketing

    • 1970's - Optical Character Recognition (OCR)

    • ML Enabling IoT and Big Data

    • ML Enabling Cloud High Performance Computing (HPC)

    • ML Enabling Deep Learning Artificial Neural Networks

    • ML Enabling Deep Reinforcement Learning

    • Funding for ML Projects

    • ML Classification Examples

    • Ethics

    • What Humans Do Well

    • Humans and Machines Working Together

    • ML Challenges and Risks 1/3

    • ML Challenges and Risks 2/3

    • ML Challenges and Risks 3/3

    • Test your learning - Part Two

    • Summary

  • 4

    3. An Introduction to Machine Learning (Part 1)

    • Section Three Overview

    • Section 3 Contents

    • Tom Mitchell's Definition of ML

    • Engineers Build Models Everyday

    • Schematic of an AI Program

    • Features of an Agent

    • Types of an Agent

    • Russell and Norviq - A General Learning Agent

    • Typical Agent Functionality

    • State of the Agent World

    • Machine Learning - Part of the AI Toolkit

    • Types of ML

    • Test your learning - Part Three

    • Summary

  • 5

    4. An Introduction to Machine Learning (Part 2)

    • Section Four Overview

    • Section 4 Contents

    • Batch and Offline Learning

    • Online Learning

    • Instance Based and Model Based Learning

    • ML is Multi-Disciplinary

    • ML - Good Data and Algorithms

    • ML - Good Data and Algorithms: Overfitting

    • ML - Good Data and Algorithms: Underfitting

    • ML - Good Data and Algorithms: Underfitting

    • Test Your Learning - Part Four

    • Summary

  • 6

    5. The Future of Artificial Intelligence - Human and Machine Together

    • Section 5 Contents

    • Humans and Machines Working Together (further reading)

    • Ethics - Challenge

    • Robotics Guidelines - EPSRC

    • Ethics in AI

    • Super AI - Consciousness

    • Human Roles

    • How Humans Complement Machines

    • How AI Enhances Humans

    • Asilomar Principles

    • Test Your Learning - Part Five

    • Summary

    • Section Five Overview

  • 7

    6. Conclusion

    • What Have We Learned?

    • Next Steps in Your Learning and Your Career

    • Course Completion

  • 8

    7. Reading List

    • Recommended Reading List

  • 9

    8. Exam Preparation

Did You Know?

There are currently around 300,000 AI professionals worldwide but millions of roles available requiring AI skills which are only set to increase year on year (Forbes. 2018). Stay ahead of the curve and learn about how AI can impact the business world whilst developing your career in this expanding field.


  • Who is it for?

    Individuals with an interest in (or a need to implement) AI in an organisation, especially those working in areas such as science, engineering, knowledge engineering, finance, or IT services. Middle and senior managers running or assembling teams to create AI dependent applications and services, that need to understand the context of AI in an industrial setting.

  • What will I learn?

    Develop your knowledge and understanding of: the terminology and general principles, including benefits and types of AI. The basic process of machine learning (ML). The challenges and risks associated with an AI project. The future of AI and humans in work.

  • Exam

    A 20 question multiple-choice exam, included in price (pass mark is 65%) which you can take at home, computer with webcam required. You will have 12 months access to the course to help you prepare.

  • Entry requirements

    There are no entry requirements for this certification.

  • What Do I Get?

    As well as gaining new skills and knowledge, upon successful completion, you will receive a globally recognised professional certification awarded by BCS at SFIA Plus Level 2, and free annual Associate membership to BCS to further develop your career and grow your professional network.

  • How Long Does It Take to Complete?

    We recommend around 40 hours of study before taking the exam, though many students complete the course in only a few days.

  • What Tutor Support Is Available?

    A qualified tutor is on hand to answer any questions you have about the course and the content, via email or the student discussion forum.

  • What Career Support Is Available?

    When you pass your course, you will receive a one-year free membership to BCS (worth £90) which offers professional networking and career development opportunities within specific IT fields, and within BCS there is a specific careers centre ’Springboard'.


Company Director and Accredited Trainer

Darren Winter

Darren is the Company Director of Duco Digital, a digital marketing & training business providing business analysis and delivering professional marketing solutions including websites, social media marketing, SEO, marketing strategies and training. In 2020, he launched Duco Digital Training offering BCS accredited distance learning courses. In 2017 he graduated from Newcastle University with an MA with merit in Cross-Cultural Communication and International Marketing, previously graduating with a BSc in Computing from Teesside University where he was also a University Governor. He is the Chair of the Redcar Cleveland Ambassadors and the Redcar Town Deal Board, and also manages the Redcar and Cleveland Business Network.

Start your AI journey today. For only £500!

Price includes 12 months access, tutor support and exam costs.

What If I Change My Mind?

If you change your mind about your course purchase, you can apply for a refund within 14 days of purchase, provided that you haven't accessed your course material. Please note that you are no longer eligible if you have accessed your course material or communicated with any course tutor.