Published: 28 October 2020

MSc in AI built on three decades at the forefront of audio-visual machine perception

Number 1 in computer vision in the UK and home to one of the largest research centres in Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Europe, Surrey is perfectly positioned to offer its innovative masters course in AI.

The MSc in AI, which was launched in 2020, aims to help meet the global need for highly trained AI specialists with a broad understanding of this fast-moving field, both to lead industry and to drive future research, by nurturing the next generation of AI researchers.

The MSc draws on the unique expertise within Surrey’s Centre for Vision, Speech and Signal Processing (CVSSP), a world-leading research centre which has been at the cutting edge of AI research for over 30 years.

As a pioneer in the new field of machine learning since the 1980s, CVSSP is the only centre of its kind that brings together leading expertise in both audio and visual AI, with the goal of creating machines that can see and hear to understand the world around them. CVSSP research has enabled ground-breaking technologies which are used in healthcare, security, entertainment, robotics and communications.

AI is impacting almost every area of research and teaching at Surrey. The AI@Surrey network, led by CVSSP, brings together over 300 researchers from across the University’s schools and departments including computer science, business, finance, law, politics, sociology, languages, health sciences, space technology, environmental science and future communications (through Surrey’s 5G Innovation Centre) with strong industry collaboration.

Reflecting this interdisciplinary environment, the MSc offers technical training in the three hottest topics in AI – vision, speech and communications – together with the business, legal and ethical implications of AI.

The course was developed by and is delivered with the active involvement of leading academics including two Fellows of the Royal Academy of Engineering, Professor Adrian Hilton and Professor Josef Kittler, and Professor Tao Xiang, a Distinguished Professor at Surrey and Chief Scientist at Samsung AI Research Centre, Cambridge.

To realise the social and economic benefits and global opportunities of AI, the need for AI scientists, analysts and business leaders around the world is growing exponentially. In the UK, academia, business and government are working together to implement a long term strategy in which the UK continues to be a leader for generations to come. AI is predicted to have the potential to deliver a 22 per cent boost to the economy by 2030 (McKinsey Global Institute 2019).

Studying on Surrey’s MSc in AI opens up a range of exciting roles in industry within global technology companies and in sectors such as finance and banking, as well as with AI technology business start-ups. It also delivers an opportunity for industry to increase the convergence of technologies in AI by growing talent, upskilling or retraining existing employees.

Equally, the course is an excellent pathway to Surrey’s renowned PhD in Vision, Speech and Signal Processing for those who are inspired to pursue research in a specific area of audio-visual AI. Studying for this PhD puts you at the heart of an inclusive and thriving community of over 170 researchers from more than 20 nationalities.                

Chuan Huang, a student on the MSc in AI said: “I was inspired to study on this programme because of the dominance of big data in our society and the important role of 5G. CVSSP at Surrey has rich experience in image processing deep learning and machine intelligence while the Institute for Communication Systems is famous all over the world for its 5G Innovation Centre.”                    

“The MSc equips students for AI scientist roles at technology giants such as Google, or jobs requiring a systematic and analytical understanding of AI in areas like finance, as well as providing an excellent pathway to doctoral research in AI. By blending technical with business and legal understanding, it will also enable students to pursue entrepreneurial opportunities.” - Programme leader Dr Yi-Zhe Song

Professor Adrian Hilton, Director of CVSSP, commented: “The MSc in AI aims to equip students with skills and experience at the forefront of AI technology together with an understanding of the business, legal and ethical requirements for deployment of future AI enabled technologies across business sectors from healthcare and security to robotics, entertainment and communications. CVSSP is at the forefront of AI technologies leading advances in collaboration with industry for the benefit of society. Our MSc in AI is an exciting opportunity to shape the future that AI offers us all.”


Discover our courses in electrical and electronic engineering including our Artificial Intelligence MSc and Vision, Speech and Signal Processing PhD.