Elements of AI online course to be introduced in Sweden in the spring

The free Elements of AI online course open to everyone will start propagating basic knowledge in artificial intelligence in Sweden, while further expansion to other countries is also being planned.

The Elements of AI online course, developed by the University of Helsinki and the tech company Reaktor, will this spring be offered also in Sweden. The Swedish-language course was introduced on 6 February at the opening ceremony of AI Innovation of Sweden, an artificial intelligence centre, in Gothenburg. The Swedish-language course will be made available in spring of 2019.

Elements of AI is a massive open online course (MOOC) that provides basic knowledge of concepts, uses and restrictions related to artificial intelligence. The course has become the most popular course in the history of the University of Helsinki. So far, more than 130,000 individuals have registered for the course, of whom over 13,000 people from around the world have completed it. The course, originally made available in May 2018, can also be completed in Finnish.

Sweden is the first country outside Finland to implement a version of its own.

“Sweden serves as a pilot for us, demonstrating how well we can succeed in improving AI-related skills in other countries. This is also an essential part of Finland's artificial intelligence strategy. It’s about what is known as AI literacy and, in a more general sense, keeping civic skills up to date with the demands of digitalisation,” says Teemu Roos, the coordinator of the course and associate professor of computer science at the University of Helsinki.

According to Roos, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Brazil and Dubai, among others, have expressed interest in a translated version of the course.

The Swedish-language course is being implemented in collaboration with the AI Innovation of Sweden network and Swedish partner universities. The Swedish Cultural Foundation in Finland has awarded €80,000 for the development of the Swedish-language course. In conjunction with the launch of the AI centre, a campaign related to the course (#aichallenge, #aiutmaningen, #tekoälyhaaste) was kicked off in Sweden, with Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintilä from Finland challenging his Swedish colleague, Minister for Energy and Digitalisation Anders Ygeman, to complete the course. The campaign aims to engage one per cent of the Swedish population in getting to know artificial intelligence.

“Our most ambitious dream is, together with other countries, to reach one per cent of the global population. That’s totally insane, but why not aim for it?” Roos says.

Additional information: 

Teemu Roos

Associate professor, University of Helsinki

+358 44 523 1238, teemu.roos@cs.helsinki.fi

Take the English-language Elements of AI basic course here.