Could tell us a little about yourself and about your studies before coming to Imperial?

I'm originally from Indonesia.  Before I came to do a postgraduate degree at Imperial, I studied a bachelor's degree in Statistics and Computing at Melbourne University.  Throughout my undergraduate degree, I was exposed to numerous probability and statistics subjects as well as several computing subjects.  I also had several research internship opportunities at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) Australia, and worked with a leading AI researcher at Australia National University.  My studies and these experiences have made me realise that AI is one of my biggest passions as it allows me to combine concepts from Computing and Mathematics.

What attracted you about the MSc in AI?

What attracted me the most is the wide range of AI modules and the flexibility that the program offers.  I have always wanted to specialise in the mathematical side of machine learning.  The program allows me to pursue my goal as it offers subjects of interest such as Probabilistic Inference, Deep Learning, Computational Optimisation, and a core introductory module, Introduction to Machine Learning.  I also really like how Imperial focuses on both theoretical and practical aspects of machine learning.  That way I can be prepared both for further research degrees and AI applications in industry.

What are you enjoying the most?

I really enjoy the learning atmosphere at Imperial College.  I really like coming to lectures and discussing machine learning concepts with lecturers.  It’s truly a blessing to be able to study at one of the world's leading universities and work with the world’s leading researchers.  Apart from lectures, I also really enjoy talking and discussing with other students at Imperial.  I feel that everyone is really motivated and passionate about what they’re doing.  Everyone is working so hard which is kind of contagious. 

What are you finding more challenging?

The most challenging thing in the degree is the rapid pace of lectures and its intense workload.  I think the course encourages us to do our own independent study apart from revising lectures.  This means that we need to study daily in order to get on top of the material and coursework.

What do you do in your spare time?

In my spare time, I usually go to the gym and attend a bible study session at my church.  It is important to be active to keep my body healthy.  In addition, it is also important to have a close community that helps each other especially as I'm really far from home.

Do you have any advice for prospective students?

I really recommend the MSc AI degree for students who want to enter into the Artificial Intelligence world.  This degree will provide an amazing variety of modules for students who want to learn different aspects of AI.  In addition, the flexibility of the degree also allows prospective students to either specialise in a particular area of AI or widen their understanding.  However, prospective students should be aware that the course is intense and that they therefore need to manage their time well.

I also recommend that prospective students should try to learn some coding in python before coming to this degree.  The MSc in AI has a core Python Programming module in term 1 which doesn't presuppose any experience in python, but several modules in the first term require python coding in their coursework, and the extra practice before the degree starts would help you to stay ahead of the curve.