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NEW MSc in Artificial Intelligence (ONLINE)

Duration: 2 years part-time
Grant Aided Cost: Please email
Location: University of Limerick
Course Code: ICT400
Note: This programme is primarily online with some on-campus workshops

An exciting new two-year part-time programme to give current and potential AI engineers the skills, theory and recognition they need to develop in their role.  For the first time, candidates can gain a full MSc degree in this specialist area through a mixed learning process with an emphasis on practical application in the workplace.

Download the brochure here


This initiative has emerged from needs expressed by member companies of Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet augmented by research and data from IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, Science Foundation Ireland and others. AI is already at the heart of many transformational business and technical applications, typically employing a combination of data analytics and machine learning. AI applications using massive datasets, powerful computing architectures and advanced learning algorithms are contributing to business growth and societal benefit in fields such as Health, Education, Finance, Telecommunications, Leisure and the Automotive Industry, while new AI-enhanced services for communication, information, entertainment and social convenience are fundamentally altering the way in which society functions. This trend is set to continue and accelerate.

Companies that have supported the content development of this course include: Accenture, Advanced Metadata, Analog Devices, Citibank, Dell EMC, Emdalo Technologies, Ericsson, IBM, iMage Vision, Jaguar Land Rover, Movidius an Intel Company, Microsoft, Nokia Bell Labs, Soapbox Labs, and Valeo Vision Systems.

The programme is industry-led and is being developed with the support of a range of companies working in this field in Ireland. Skillnets is funding most of the development costs and the delivery costs will be part-funded both by Skillnets and the participating companies.

The University of Limerick won the tender to develop and deliver this new national MSc in Artificial Intelligence (AI). The course will begin in September 2018 and will be delivered predominantly online with some intensive Problem Based Learning (PBL) workshops taking place on the University campus.

In addition to the Masters course a short intensive 12 week fast-track Preparatory Course in AI course will also be developed and delivered by UL in collaboration with the Irish Centre for High End Computing, Ireland’s national centre for HPC.

Both these courses will equip participants with a knowledge-base and an advanced skillset to enable them to become highly capable experts for this strategically important sector which will in turn have a positive impact on the Irish economy.


The Masters course will run over two-years part-time and will be delivered primarily via on-line lectures, supported with tutorials and assignments and some on-campus workshops. Assessment will be based on assignments and project work with a practical rather than theoretical focus. Modules will be delivered as discrete entities with associated assessment of mastery so that Semester by Semester there is a confirmed and measurable achievement of learning objectives that can be transferred directly and immediately to the workplace. The Masters will be a major award at Level 9 of the NFQ with 90 ECTS credits (60 taught and 30 project).


While the final content will be subject to the development process that is now taking place the provisional content is shown below:

Year 1  – Semester 1 (15 weeks)

  • Artificial Intelligence Tools & Technologies
  • Machine Learning Algorithms
  • Data Mining

Year 1 – Semester 2 (15 weeks)

  • Human, Organisation, Ethics and Privacy Issues
  • Deep Learning
  • Machine Vision and Pattern Recognition

Year 2 – Semester 3( 15 weeks)

  • Theoretical Foundations of AI
  • Research Methods
  • Research/Development Project – Part 1

Year 2 – Semester 4 (15 weeks)

  • Machine Learning Applications
  • Problem Specification and Analysis
  • Research/Development Project – Part 2

Year 2 – Semester 5 (6 weeks)

  • Research/Development Project – Part 3


The programme is aimed at (a) existing information technology professionals, (b) those migrating from associated disciplines and (c) appropriately qualified recent graduates (new entrants) who are interested in pursuing a career in this field and need an in-depth knowledge of all aspects of artificial intelligence.

The aim is to begin recruitment of 60 participants in late Spring-early Summer 2018 for the first Introduction to AI course to begin in September 2018 followed by the first iteration of the Masters programme in January 2019.


The principal entry requirement for both the Masters course and the Introductory Course is a Level 8 honours degree, at minimum second class honours (NFQ or other internationally recognised equivalent), in a relevant engineering, computing, mathematics, science or technology discipline.

Applicants from other disciplines who have a significant mathematics or computing element in their primary degree will also be considered.

Applicants who possess an honours undergraduate degree, at minimum second-class honours, or equivalent in a non-numerate discipline and have a minimum of three years experiential learning in an appropriate computing discipline may also apply – their admission to the program will be determined by the University of Limerick.

Applicants who do not meet the requirements above may be considered under the University of Limerick policy that allows for the recognition of Prior Learning, both formal and informal/experiential learning; non-accredited personal and professional education; and work based training.

All entrants must complete the Introduction to AI course regardless of their prior qualifications or experience. Where a candidate wishes to do the Introductory Course only then some of the requirements above may be waived depending on the qualifications and experience of the applicant.


Applications are now being accepted for a start in September 2018.  Applicants should submit their CV directly to Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet at Participants will be required to complete registration details both for Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet and for the University of Limerick.

Please note: The University of Limerick has sole discretion and is the final arbiter on who will participate. Making an application is not a guarantee of selection. Applications are treated in strictest confidence. Applicants accept that no feedback will be provided to them, or any other party, regarding the selection process nor will applicants be provided with any reason for their non-selection.


Applications from those in Employment:

Applicants may be submitted by companies on behalf of their employees, or in person by the applicant if they are paying the cost themselves (which may or may not be subsequently reimbursed by their company), provided they supply evidence that their company supports their participation and is willing to allow them to complete a work-related project as part of the course. Where a person is self-employed they may apply in person provided they supply evidence of their ability to complete a work-related project as part of the course.

Employees from Public Sector organisations, charity or not-for profit organisations or companies based outside the Republic of Ireland are not eligible to apply for this programme.

Applications from Potential New Entrants:

Suitably qualified graduates should send their CV directly to Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet. After an initial screening of the CV the Skillnet will forward all eligible applications to the University of Limerick for consideration. Once approved by the University the applicant will be asked to give permission for their details to be placed on an Approved Candidate Register (ACR) – an online private database.  Applicants must be Irish or EEA National or resident in Republic of Ireland on a Stamp 4 VISA.

The closing date for applications is Friday 1st June 2018.

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