AI Master’s: Building Ontario’s Ecosystem
The Vector Institute is building an AI workforce to drive the competitiveness of Ontario-based companies and labs and to strengthen Ontario’s position as a global destination in AI. The Vector Scholarship in Artificial Intelligence, valued at $17,500, helps to attract the best and brightest students to study in AI-related master’s programs in Ontario. There are currently over 20 master’s programs in Ontario recognized by the Vector Institute for equipping graduates with AI skills and competencies sought by industry. These include new and expanded programs in core technical and complementary areas such as business and health. By providing an increasing number of students and graduates with meaningful professional development and linking them to compelling internship and career opportunities through the Vector Digital Talent Hub, the Vector Institute is positioning Ontario to lead the way in AI adoption.
Vector Digital Talent Hub
Students and alumni* have access to Vector’s Digital Talent Hub. Users can browse and apply to AI job postings, set up automated job alerts, and upload their profile details for employers to contact them regarding career opportunities. Students and alumni* are welcome to Create a Profile.
Career Supports for Students
Vector-affiliated students and alumni* enjoy access to career development and networking activities. These opportunities enable students to explore various career paths in AI, better understand the opportunities and challenges of AI adoption across different sectors, and meet with potential employers. Sign up to learn about events and more!
*including students and graduates from Vector-recognized programs, recipients of the Vector Scholarship in Artificial Intelligence, as well as researchers affiliated with Vector Faculty Members and Faculty Affiliates.
Careers in AI events are held across the province including Kitchener and Ottawa, where experienced industry professionals working in the local AI ecosystems share about opportunities and challenges in today’s AI industry and master’s students have the opportunity to network and connect with their peers in AI programs. Pictured on the right: Melissa Judd (Vector Institute), Maria Pospelova (Interset), Mike Cloutier (Accenture), Robin Grosset (Mindbridge Analytics Inc.) and Nevena Francetic (Shopify Inc.)
AI Master’s Summit & Career Fair (September 2019, Toronto): At this inaugural event, over 300 master’s students from 30 programs across Ontario had the opportunity to meet with 18 of Vector’s sponsors to learn more about career opportunities in AI and make meaningful connections with one another. Photographer: Calyssa Lorraine
The Vector Institute has been tasked with supporting Ontario’s growing AI eco-system including the goal of accelerating the number of artificial intelligence (AI)-related master’s graduates. To achieve this goal, universities with expertise in AI-related areas are invited to expand or enhance relevant existing master’s programs or create new AI-related programs to:
- Meet the essential requirements articulated by Vector for core technical AI and complementary AI-related fields; and
- Prepare highly qualified graduates who demonstrate area-specific advanced knowledge, skills and competencies sought by the AI-sector to build a highly skilled workforce and support economic growth and productivity.
Programs must prepare graduates to meet all essential requirements as well as advanced AI field specific learning outcomes. The Vector Institute Guidance Document for AI-Related Master’s programs details both the process and requirements for program recognition. Programs are invited to complete the Program Recognition Submission form to be considered for recognition. While submissions for Vector recognition can be made at any time, the following are the scheduled meeting dates of the Program Recognition Panel for the 2020-21 academic year:
- November 3, 2020
- February 3, 2021
- May 5, 2021
Benefits of Program Recognition
Programs recognized by Vector will be listed on our website as Vector recognized master’s programs. Programs may highlight that they have been recognized by the Vector Institute as delivering a curriculum that equips graduates with the skills and competencies sought by industry.
Students enrolled in recognized programs can take advantage of:
- Career development & supports such as the Vector AI Master’s Summit & Career Fair, where students meet with like-minded peers from across Ontario and interact with potential employers that are building AI teams and adopting the technology across their organizations.
- Opportunities to connect with Vector industry sponsors, who are at the forefront of AI in Canada through education and networking events hosted by the Vector Institute, such as the Careers in AI Panel.
- Access to internships and full-time roles through the Vector AI Digital Talent Hub featuring AI-related opportunities.
- Exposure to the latest AI research from around the globe through events such as:
- The Fields Institute Machine Learning Advances and Applications Seminar series, which strengthens the machine learning community in Ontario by bringing together researchers from both academia and industry to discuss advanced topics in machine learning.
- Health AI Rounds, a series featuring leading international health researchers that connects the health research and AI communities and seeds new collaborations. View previous Rounds discussions at: vectorinstitute.ai/research/#talks.
- Opportunities to engage with other students and alumni in AI master’s programs across Ontario, both on and off-line.
The University of Guelph’s Collaborative Specialization in Artificial Intelligence (AI) provides thesis-based master’s students in Computer Science, Engineering, Mathematics and Statistics, and Bioinformatics with a diverse and comprehensive knowledge base in AI. Students will learn from a multidisciplinary team of faculty with expertise in fundamental and applied deep learning and machine learning, while conducting AI-related research guided by a faculty supervisor. Through a combination of online learning, lectures, team-based problem-solving, and experiential learning opportunities, students will obtain broad expertise in machine learning and AI. They will gain essential skills in programming and algorithmic thinking, mathematical foundations and statistical analysis for AI, optimization, and data visualization. Additionally, graduates will have a deep understanding about the policy, regulatory and ethical issues related to AI.
By the end of this program, graduates will have comprehensive understanding of leading-edge AI techniques and will be able to apply this knowledge to solve real-world problems. Graduates will find employment opportunities in government and private industry, filling in-demand jobs such as machine learning research scientists, consultants, data scientists, and software engineers.
Master of Science (Computer Science – AI)
The Department of Computer Science is offering a two-year, thesis-based Master of Science in Computer Science (MSc) program with a specialization in Artificial Intelligence (AI).
Students will develop the skills and knowledge to conduct research in the field of Computer Science with a focus on core AI techniques. Upon completion, students will be able to apply and select appropriate AI algorithms and techniques in a variety of industrial sectors and further advance the AI related research. Topics will include natural language processing, deep learning, machine learning, image processing, pattern recognition and other emerging technologies. Finally, students will develop research and application based ethical awareness.
Ontario Tech University offers a specialized field within its Master of IT Security program with a focus on Applications of Artificial Intelligence in IT Security (MITS-AIS). This professional stream is the first of its kind in Canada and combines a deep knowledge of IT Security with hands-on knowledge of artificial intelligence systems and machine learning, and provides students with a comprehensive understanding of the applications of this technology. Most courses in the MITS and MITS-AIS program include hands-on and laboratory assignments that simulate a variety of computer networking, security attacks and defence scenarios.
Students must complete 30 credits, including six mandatory and two elective courses in AI and IT Security; a seminar course; and the option of either a Capstone project to conduct research on a topic related to AI and security under the supervision of a faculty member, or an industry internship; subject to availability and program director’s approval.
Graduates of this program can seek employment in the growing artificial intelligence industry, public and private organizations, as well as IT security firms.
University of Ottawa / Université d’Ottawa
The applied artificial intelligence (AI) concentration within the existing Master of Computer Science program at uOttawa encompasses both the foundations and applications of machine learning. This unique program emphasizes the application of machine learning and AI to solve problems in areas such as health care, medicine, education, manufacturing and cyberspace.
Courses include machine learning and other AI-related topics such as deep learning, reinforcement learning, natural-language processing, computer vision, semantic web and intelligent physical systems. The program also includes a seminar, that centres on the ethical and societal impact of AI, while fostering community building and strengthening students’ communication skills.
Students will become experts in AI-related algorithms and methodologies, and will acquire knowledge to manage, assess and explore a variety of data across multiple application areas. Students will further gain an understanding of the potential of bias in AI technologies, the ethics, benefits and dangers of AI, and the impact of AI on society. These are scarce competencies that are immediately useful and valued by industry, as well as academia.
Le programme en intelligence artificielle (IA) appliquée du programme de maîtrise en informatique de l’uOttawa couvre tant les aspects fondamentaux que les applications liées à l’apprentissage automatique. Ce programme unique met l’accent sur la résolution de problèmes concrets liés aux soins de la santé, la médecine, l’éducation, l’industrie manufacturière et le cyberespace.
Les cours portent sur l’apprentissage profond, l’apprentissage par renforcement, le traitement automatique des langues, la vision artificielle, le web sémantique et les systèmes intelligents. Ce programme comprend aussi des séminaires portants sur les aspects éthiques et sociaux de l’IA.
Les étudiants poursuivant la concentration en IA deviendront des experts en algorithmes et méthodologies d’apprentissage automatique et posséderont les connaissances nécessaires pour gérer, évaluer et explorer une variété de données dans de multiples domaines d’application. Ils acquerront une compréhension du risque de biais dans l’apprentissage machine et d’autres technologies d’IA, ainsi que l’éthique, les avantages et les dangers de l’IA, et l’impact de l’IA sur la société. Il s’agit de compétences rares qui sont très appréciées tant par l’industrie que par le milieu universitaire.
Master of Applied Science (MASc) in Electrical and Computer Engineering and Master of Engineering (M.Eng) in Electrical and Computer Engineering — Applied Artificial Intelligence Concentration
The objective of this program is to graduate highly qualified electrical and computer engineers who not only are highly skilled in AI theory, but are also equipped with the desired skills to apply their knowledge across multiple domains. To this end, it covers both the fundamental knowledge in machine learning and its applications to the problems in electrical and computer engineering. Furthermore, this program leverages the application of machine learning and AI to innovate in areas such as communications, devices, utilities, transportation, digital health, cybersecurity and manufacturing.
MASc students complete a thesis, while M.Eng. students complete a project. Both are eligible for and encouraged to do an industry internship. The course on social implications and ethics equips students with effective oral and written communications skills to communicate with generalist audiences and clients. The program ensures students are able to develop and present AI-based solutions, and apply AI-based methodologies to solve practical problems in electrical and computer engineering. These include topics such as robotics, digital health, cyber-physical systems, wired/wireless communications, cyber-security and multimedia systems. As well, the students work with professionals from other disciplines to integrate AI-based solutions into services and products in other domains.
Maîtrise ès sciences appliquées Génie électrique et génie informatique (M.Sc.A), Maîtrise en ingénierie Génie électrique et génie informatique (M.Ing) – Concentration en intelligence artificielle appliquée
L’objectif de ce programme est de former des ingénieurs électriciens et informaticiens hautement qualifiés en théorie de l’intelligence artificielle (IA) et dotés des compétences requises pour appliquer leurs connaissances à plusieurs domaines. À cette fin, ce programme couvre à la fois les connaissances fondamentales en apprentissage automatique et ses applications aux problèmes d’ingénierie électrique et informatique. En outre, ce programme exploite l’application de l’apprentissage automatique et de l’IA pour innover dans des domaines tels que les communications, les dispositifs, les services publics, les transports, la santé numérique, la cybersécurité et la fabrication.
Les étudiants à la M.Sc.A. doivent compléter une thèse tandis que ceux à la M.Ing. doivent compléter un projet. Tous les étudiants peuvent s’inscrire à un stage en industrie, une option fortement encouragée. Le cours sur les implications sociales et l’éthique dans la conception, l’IA et la robotique fournit aux étudiants des expériences de communication orale et écrite, les préparant aux scommunication auprès de clients et du grand public. Le programme procure aux étudiants les habiletés et connaissances nécessaires au développement et à la présentation de solutions fondées sur l’IA pour des domaines du génie électrique et informatique tels que la robotique, les services de santé numériques, les systèmes cyber-physiques, les communications avec et sans fil, la cybersécurité et les systèmes multimédias. De plus, les étudiants travaillent avec des professionnels d’autres disciplines pour intégrer des solutions fondées sur l’IA à des services et produits d’autres domaines.
Queen’s University (Smith School of Business)
Harnessing AI’s potential for competitive performance requires a new type of professional: one who not only understands the capacity of the science but has the expertise to apply it to organizational needs and strategies, and who can navigate the ethical, economic and societal implications. The Master of Management in Artificial Intelligence will provide:
- A strong understanding of the technical principles of AI and modern methods for data search and retrieval, and how to practically apply them to real world problems;
- Command of best practices in identifying opportunities for and applying AI;
- Expertise in the business practices required to effectively use AI and machine learning;
- Awareness and engagement in the ethical, economic, and societal impacts of computers exhibiting intelligent behavior;
- Enhancement of skills for communicating complex problems and AI solutions to wide audiences in an organization; and
- Training in creating and maintaining high performance work teams.
The Master of Management Analytics – Toronto marries training in core data analytics concepts and tools, with outstanding education in business strategy and management. It includes extensive review of the fundamental mathematical and statistical theories and methods that underlie modern analytics, but with a practitioner focus. The program features some of the best management educators in the world, plus industry specialists and practitioners who bring their daily experience and insights to the discussion. Students will be exposed to a variety of tools and programming languages including R, Python, Tableau, Hadoop, and Spark, and technical courses are taught by experts and range from importing data and data visualization to machine learning, deep learning, and more. Take this 12-month program while working, with classes based at Smith Toronto, a dedicated learning facility in downtown Toronto.
The Queen’s School of Computing offers a Field of Study in AI that prepares students for AI-related work in leading technology firms, healthcare companies, automobile manufacturers, and research labs.
Students take five graduate courses and complete an AI-related MSc thesis over a period of 18 to 24 months. Upon graduation, students will have a solid background in core AI with a “Field of Study in AI” credential on their transcript.
The MSc thesis gives the student experience delving deep into a single AI problem in either core AI or an application of AI. The thesis typically provides training in project definition, substantial implementation, the use of real-world AI tools and packages, and technical writing.
Students can select from AI courses among deep learning, reinforcement learning, data mining, neural networks, nonlinear optimization, and pattern recognition. Students also take a research methods and AI-in-society course and may choose a non-AI course as part of the program.
The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Queen’s offers a unique Master of Applied Science program with a Field of Study in Artificial Intelligence (AI) that provides the graduate students with a solid foundation in the principles of AI, machine learning and deep learning. Graduates will be able to design and analyze AI-related algorithms and methodologies, employ modern scientific and engineering tools, and apply AI-based techniques to tackle complex research problems. They will acquire advanced research and technical knowledge in AI-related fields and will have deep understanding about the ethical and societal implications of AI.
The Department has substantial expertise in AI-related methodologies and application areas. The program will prepare graduates through a combination of classroom and online learning, team-based problem-solving and course projects, research seminars, and faculty-supervised research projects. A broad range of courses allow students to tailor their education according to career goals. The program, with its mixture of AI-related methodologies and application areas, prepares highly-qualified graduates with area-specific knowledge, skills, and competences highly sought by the public and private AI sector.
Ryerson University’s Department of Electrical, Computer and Biomedical Engineering Master of Engineering program (MEng) with an AI concentration will provide students with the essential training to be successful professionals in the field of AI. Students will be required to take four core courses: 1) Intelligent Systems, 2) Neural Networks, 3) Deep Learning, and 4) Advanced Data Engineering. Four interdisciplinary electives will also be required in application areas such as energy, sustainability, computer networks, and digital media—which will be studied through an AI lens. At the core of the program, the students will study ethical and societal implications of AI, covering topics such as bias, fairness and accountability. One of Ryerson’s strengths is combining theory with experiential learning; as such, a practicum will present students with the opportunity to solve a real-world problem using AI. Upon completion of the program, our graduates will be able to identity the requirements of an AI-driven system, analyze state-of-the-art AI techniques and apply them in a range of disciplines to solve some of industry and society’s greatest challenges.
This unique one-year Master of Science (MSc) degree program enables students to develop interdisciplinary skills and gain a deep understanding of technical and applied knowledge in data science and analytics. Graduates are highly trained, qualified data scientists who can pursue careers in industry, government or research. Core technical skills such as math, statistics, operations research, programming, machine learning and domain knowledge are the core competencies that are in greatest demand in the marketplace. The program is designed to meet the requirements of the marketplace. Data science is an interdisciplinary field that combines expertise from different technical and expert domains. The program is designed with the contributions of four different faculties to reflect the interdisciplinary nature of the field. The curriculum consists of six courses and a mandatory applied advanced project.
Students learn how data science and analytics can help to improve decisions throughout an organization’s value chain, understand how recommendations lead to tangible actions through prescriptive analytics techniques, gain a good understanding of methods used in building such data-driven models, and acquire hands-on experience with machine learning algorithms that are widely used in practice.
University of Toronto (Rotman School of Management)
The Rotman Master of Management Analytics (MMA) is a nine-month, full-time program running from August to April. The program is focused on teaching the applications of advanced analytics, AI, and machine learning to provide data-driven insights on complex managerial problems. Balancing rigorous theoretical knowledge with experiential learning opportunities, the program is structured to first develop tools and techniques, and then focus on the holistic application of analytics and AI to problems arising in various areas of management. Hands-on skills, including coding and knowledge of advanced analytic tools are emphasized, as are effective communication and presentation skills. Two unique features of the program are the Analytics Colloquia, consisting of modules ranging from Ethics in AI to Applications of Quantum Computing, and the Management Analytics Practicum, where students work on a real-world business problem over the course of a nine-month project. The practicum projects in 2018/19 reflect broad-based interest and come from a wide cross-section of industries including Banking, Pharmaceutical, Telecommunications, Insurance, Retail, and Services.
University of Toronto (Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation)
The Master of Health Informatics (MHI) is a professional program enabling graduates to harness the potential of data and knowledge for the better management of health and care. Set within University of Toronto’s Dalla Lana School of Public Health, and the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, MHI exists within a vibrant, interdisciplinary culture. Taught by health sector leaders, MHI focuses on upstream development of the healthcare complement in areas of policy, management and evaluation to prepare students to lead AI-based change. By design, each cohort reflects healthcare’s many stakeholders, and team-based learning draws together students from clinical, analytic, business, project management and technological backgrounds. MHI is a 16-month full-time program that includes a 4-month applied professional practicum and an AI-based capstone project. The Executive MHI is a modular stream enabling students to balance full-time employment and study. MHI graduates bridge complex social, cultural, political and technological settings in healthcare. With competencies in responsible innovation and knowledge-based implementation, graduates are ready to bring judgement and order to the process of assimilating AI and related knowledge into healthcare.
Students in the Master of Data Science and Artificial Intelligence at Waterloo receive an in-depth education in the theory and practice of machine learning and computational analysis of massive data sets plus industrial experience. Offered jointly by three departments (Computer Science, Statistics and Actuarial Science, and Combinatorics & Optimization), available courses cover robust and efficient storage systems of massive data, effective statistical data exploration, and algorithms for discovering hidden structures. The program typically requires three terms on campus (to complete nine courses) and one term in an industrial co-op placement, for a total of 16 months. Waterloo’s mature and extensive co-operative education system and industrial ties give students opportunities to work at top data science and AI companies in North America. Entering students should have a bachelor’s degree in computer science, statistics, data science, or a related mathematical field. Background courses are available during the first term for students missing an aspect of the prerequisites.
Students in the Master of Mathematics in Data Science program at Waterloo work at the forefront of modern research in topics related to data science, encompassing statistics, computer science, and optimization. Degree requirements include the completion of four graduate courses and the writing of a Master’s thesis under the supervision of a leading expert from one of three departments (Computer Science, Statistics and Actuarial Science, and Combinatorics & Optimization) that participate in the program. The program requires 4-6 terms, i.e., up to two calendar years. The course requirements include data exploration, distributed computing with data, machine learning and optimization, and a fourth elective course. Students in this program receive financial support composed of research and teaching assistantships and scholarships. Entering students should have a bachelor’s degree in computer science, statistics, data science, or a related mathematical field. Background courses (not counting toward the degree) are available for students missing an aspect of the prerequisites.
Master of Mathematics (Computer Science) & Master of Mathematics (Statistics), Data Science Specializations, which are no longer offered, were also Vector recognized programs.
Western’s Master of Data Analytics in Artificial Intelligence is a one-year professional science master’s program designed to produce technical data analytics professionals skilled in artificial intelligence, machine and deep learning, big data management and analysis infrastructure for unstructured data as well as other foundational areas of analytics, including visualization, databases, data carpentry and statistical modelling and inference, who are also effective communicators with complementary business skills and teamwork experience. The fall and winter curriculum consist of courses that focus on fundamental data analytics and AI-specific methods and their applications, along with a seminar series in the ethics and societal implications of AI. These courses are commonly taught by faculty who develop and apply data analytics and data science methods in their research. A career development seminar also runs over the fall and winter terms, providing students with the skills to successfully chart an effective course for their career. The summer term consists of an Experiential Learning Opportunity where students gain valuable practical experience using the analytics skills they have developed in a workplace environment.
Western University’s departments of Computer Science (CS) and Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) are jointly offering a collaborative specialization artificial intelligence (CSAI) concentration in existing Master programs in CS and ECE (i.e., MSc, MESc and MEng). CSAI enhances the education and research of a graduate student by adding a module to their program of study. The concentration is designed so that graduates have a solid foundation in artificial intelligence methodologies, enabling technologies that include big data computational platforms, data management systems, and GPU programming as well as social and ethical challenges/limitations/advantages of AI. A student in the program must demonstrate their mastery of artificial intelligence with an AI-related thesis, project or internship. The CSAI program, with its mixture of theoretical and hands-on training will provide graduate students with the quality experience necessary to prepare them for careers in high-tech Canadian industries.
The concentration in Artificial Intelligence is part of the thesis-based program of the Master of Science in Computer Science at the University of Windsor, and has a curriculum that includes a variety of AI and AI-related courses in specialized areas of computing technology, applications, and theory. The program introduces students to advanced topics in AI and AI-related subjects and applications, as well as to new AI technologies that are in high demand for computer professionals in the IT industry. The topics included in the AI stream cover the fundamental concepts of AI, concepts related to AI, as well as important applications of AI. Students graduating from the AI stream will not only be able to make contributions in the AI software industry as other non-streamed students, but also be ready for the new challenges to help Ontario’s growing AI ecosystem or to help advance AI and its related fields in their PhD studies. By the end of this program, graduates will have a comprehensive understanding of leading-edge AI techniques and will be able to apply this knowledge to solve real-world problems. Graduates will find employment opportunities in government and private industry, filling in-demand jobs such as machine learning scientists, consultants, data scientists, and software engineers.
York University’s Master of Science in Computer Science program with specialization in AI has been strategically designed to provide its graduates with a solid grasp of the computational framework underlying AI methodologies with hands-on experience on how they are applied to diverse computing problems. The core coursework focuses on fundamentals of AI, machine learning theory, data mining, and ethics of AI. A broad range of elective courses that focus on applications of AI in areas such as computer vision, robotics, neural networks & deep learning, natural language processing and data mining & analytics provide students with the ability to tailor their education according to career goals. Under the supervision of a faculty member with expertise in AI, the completion of a research project gives graduates a competitive advantage by leveraging York University’s partnerships to gain coveted industry experience. With this knowledge, graduates are positioned to successfully deploy AI methodologies across many sectors.
The Master of Business Analytics (MBAN) offered by the Schulich School of Business is a professional degree program designed to provide students with the breadth and depth of knowledge to be successful in a wide range of careers in areas such as banking, insurance, marketing, consulting, supply chain management, healthcare, and technology. What makes the Schulich MBAN program unique is the combination of academic rigor and valuable practical experiences, made possible by a strong set of collaborative relationships with industry. World-class faculty, an advisory board composed of senior leaders from successful organizations (e.g., TD Bank, BMO, CIBC, Deloitte, TELUS, SAS, Rogers, Accenture, PWC, etc.), and project partnerships with dozens of client companies ensure that the program has remained at the cutting edge of the theory and practice of Artificial Intelligence. By the end of the program, graduates are able to apply business analytics and AI-supported techniques to generate concrete and actionable business solutions.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is undergoing a landmark evolution, transforming the private and public sectors. As organizations adopt and invest in AI technology, a new style of management is needed – one that pairs a leader’s vision with a scientist’s mastery over a growing body of specialized knowledge. The 12-month Master of Management in Artificial Intelligence (MMAI) is designed to meet the growing need for talented professionals with the skills and advanced applied knowledge to develop, evaluate, refine and implement AI-related applications and technologies. The immersive curriculum offers a technical foundation in natural language processing, computational methods and modeling, paired with core business skills. Students will explore a critically evolving ethical landscape as they confront moral topics in AI, such as algorithmic bias, data privacy and intelligent agent autonomy. The capstone Artificial Intelligence Consulting Project (AICP) provides students with an opportunity to solve a significant business problem by designing an AI-centered approach. Working in the Deloitte Cognitive Analytics and Visualization Lab student teams will deliver a solution to a client organization, interacting with industry managers, technicians, suppliers and other stakeholders.
The Vector Scholarships in Artificial Intelligence, together with internships and networking programs, are a core component of the Vector Institute’s RAISE initiative, supported by the Province of Ontario, to develop and connect Ontario’s AI workforce to fuel AI-based economic development and job creation.