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Top degree programs for studying artificial intelligence

Explore the long list of undergraduate and graduate programs for students and professionals interested in studying the emerging field of artificial intelligence.

Artificial intelligence is one of the fastest-growing disciplines in technology jobs. The World Economic Forum's "Future of Jobs Report 2023" identified AI specialist as one of the fastest-growing career opportunities, projecting a 39% employment growth rate over the next five years.

Although careers in developing artificial intelligence software and models were on the increase before the COVID-19 pandemic, the disruptions it caused accelerated AI adoption. The healthcare industry most obviously benefited from AI by implementing it to scale and to improve telemedicine, advance treatment and vaccine research, and predict and track virus spread. But other businesses, such as banks and retail, also delved into AI software to improve services and analyze big data. Information-based businesses, meanwhile, deployed it to enhance remote work and digitize processes. The generative AI explosion, beginning in 2022, intensified industries' adoption of AI as large language models like ChatGPT and other generative AI platforms have become mainstream.

That means a range of new career possibilities for professionals skilled in AI, machine learning and related applications, such as expert systems, natural language processing (NLP), speech recognition, data analysis and machine vision. Educational institutions are developing more AI courses and programs to prepare the future workforce in these areas. Some offer bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees in AI, while others focus more on computer science disciplines with a specialty or research program in AI.

Explore the undergraduate and graduate options below, listed alphabetically, for some prestigious programs available to kick off a career in AI.

1. California Institute of Technology

The engineering and applied science division at Caltech offers a variety of degree programs and research projects, including autonomous systems and technologies, quantum information and matter, advanced networking and the Rigorous Systems Research Group. Through their autonomous systems and technologies focus, students can concentrate on advanced drone research, autonomous explorers or robots in medicine.

Available degree programs:

  • B.A. in applied and computational mathematics
  • B.A. in computer science
  • B.A. in information and data sciences
  • Minor in control and dynamical systems
  • Minor in computer science
  • Minor in information and data sciences
  • Ph.D. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in applied and computational mathematics

2. Carnegie Mellon University

The School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University offers a renowned program in AI, becoming the first to offer a bachelor's degree in the technology in 2018. Carnegie Mellon's AI degree programs are cross-disciplinary, combining computer science, human-computer interaction, software research, language technologies, machine learning models and robotics.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in artificial intelligence
  • M.S. in artificial intelligence and innovation

3. Columbia University

The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science at Columbia University offers both undergraduate degrees and master's degrees in AI and related fields, as well as graduate-level courses. Students can learn AI, machine learning, robotics, data science and algorithms.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science
  • B.S. in computer engineering
  • B.A. in computer science and mathematics
  • B.A. in information science
  • Minor in computer science
  • M.S. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science
Components of artificial intelligence
Studying AI means learning about many related technologies.

4. Cornell University

Cornell University is home to one of the first computer science departments in the United States. Established in 1965, the department offers 16 main areas of research, including graphics, programming languages, robotics, scientific computing and AI. In addition to these specializations, the university offers AI-related research groups that include computational biology, machine learning, NLP, robotics and vision.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science with artificial intelligence research
  • B.A. in computer science with artificial intelligence research
  • Master of Engineering in computer science with artificial intelligence research
  • M.S. in computer science with artificial intelligence research
  • Ph.D. in computer science with artificial intelligence research

5. Duke University

The Department of Computer Science at Duke University offers multiple AI research areas, including AI for social good, computational social choice, computer vision, machine learning, moral AI, NLP, reinforcement learning and robotics. Additionally, the Duke AI Health initiative is geared toward developing and implementing AI for healthcare.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science
  • B.A. in computer science
  • Minor in computer science
  • M.S. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science

6. Georgia Institute of Technology

The College of Computing at Georgia Tech offers a variety of interdisciplinary degrees and research programs, including the Center for Research into Novel Computing Hierarchies, Institute for People and Technology, Algorithms and Randomness Center (ARC), and Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines. The Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines is home to some of the most cutting-edge research areas, including control, AI and cognition, interaction and perception.

Available degree programs:

  • M.S. in human-computer interaction
  • M.S. in computer science
  • M.S. in robotics
  • Minor in robotics
  • Ph.D. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in human-centered computing
  • Ph.D. in robotics
  • Ph.D. in machine learning

7. Harvard University

Harvard University's John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, established in 2007, offers programs in computer science and AI, as well as subsets of computational linguistics, machine learning, multiagent systems and robotics. In 2021, Harvard created the Kempner Institute for the Study of Natural and Artificial Intelligence. Harvard has dedicated resources to understanding the impact of AI as it develops.

Available degree programs:

  • B.A. in computer science with artificial intelligence research
  • Combined B.A./M.S. in computer science with artificial intelligence research
  • M.S. in computer science
  • M.S. in computational science and engineering
  • M.S. in data science
  • Ph.D. in computer science with artificial intelligence research

8. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

MIT, a prestigious technology-based institution, was founded in 1861. The Laboratory for Computer Science opened roughly a century later in 1963. In 2003, it merged with the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory to form the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL). Today, it offers more than 60 research groups and hundreds of corresponding projects that fall under three main categories: AI, systems and theory. In addition to its degree program, MIT also offers the course "Artificial Intelligence: Implications for Business Strategy," an online collaborative program that teaches students how to utilize AI applications.

Available degree program:

  • B.S. in computer science with artificial intelligence research

9. Princeton University

Princeton offers AI research opportunities through its Department of Computer Science, as well as hands-on development of and experimentation with AI systems through its Visual AI Lab. AI-related research areas for computer science students include human-computer interaction, machine learning, NLP and robotics.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S.E. in computer science
  • B.A. in computer science
  • M.S.E. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science

10. Purdue University

Since Fall 2022, Purdue University has offered a bachelor's of artificial intelligence program to students. In April 2023, it launched the nation's first Institute for Physical AI (IPAI), which focuses on strategic areas of AI, including agricultural data, neuromorphic computing, deepfake detection, smart transportation data and AI-based manufacturing.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in artificial intelligence
  • B.A. in artificial intelligence
  • B.S. in computer science
  • B.S. in computer engineering
  • M.S. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science

11. Stanford University

Stanford University offers both a computer science degree program and a graduate certificate in AI from a preeminent teaching and research institution. The Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory has been researching the field of AI since 1962. Some of the school's electives include "Artificial Intelligence: Principles and Techniques," "Decision Making Under Uncertainty," "Computational Logic," "Introduction to Robotics," "Natural Language Processing with Deep Learning" and "Natural Language Understanding."

Available degree programs:

  • Graduate certificate in artificial intelligence
  • Graduate certificate in robotics and autonomous systems
  • B.S. in computer science
  • M.S. in computer science

12. University of California, Berkeley

UC, Berkeley has extensive offerings in the field of AI research. The Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research Lab offers a variety of research areas, including computer vision, machine learning, NLP and robotics. The Robotics and Intelligent Machines Lab includes the Biomimetic Millisystems Lab, People and Robots Initiative, Laboratory for Automation Science and Engineering and Robot Learning Group.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in electrical engineering and computer science
  • B.A. in computer science
  • Combined B.S./M.S. in electrical engineering and computer science

13. University of California, Los Angeles

UCLA's Samueli School of Engineering, founded in 1945, includes departments like bioengineering, chemical and biomolecular engineering, civil and environmental engineering, computer science, electrical and computer engineering, materials science and engineering, and mechanical and aerospace engineering. Research opportunities include domain-specific computing; scalable analytics; autonomous intelligent networked systems; and systematic, measurable, actionable, resilient and technology-driven (SMART) health.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science
  • M.S. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science or electrical and computer engineering

14. University of Georgia

The Institute for Artificial Intelligence at UGA was established in 1995, originally as the Artificial Intelligence Center. Its cognitive science degree program offers four concentrations: AI foundations, philosophical foundations, psychological foundations, and language and culture. Within the AI program, there are additional concentrations, including genetic and evolutionary algorithms, cognitive modeling, microelectronics, logic programming and robotics.

Available degree programs:

  • B.A. in cognitive science
  • Ph.D. in artificial intelligence
  • M.S. in artificial intelligence

15. University of Illinois

The University of Illinois' department of computer science can be found in the School of Liberal Arts & Sciences. The university's Artificial Intelligence Lab was founded in 1991 at the Chicago campus with a focus on real-world application of AI methodologies. Example lab projects include data mining for manufacturing and design processes, as well as automating the evolution of linguistic competence in artificial agents.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science
  • B.S. in mathematics and computer science
  • B.S. in statistics and computer science
  • M.S. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science

16. University of Maryland

The Department of Computer Science at the University of Maryland is affiliated with 16 research areas, which include programming languages and software engineering; graphics, visualization, and augmented reality and virtual reality; human-computer interaction; and computer vision and machine perception. In addition to its degree programs, its research centers include the Center for Automation Research, Computational Linguistics and Information Processing and Human-Computer Interaction Lab.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science
  • Combined B.S./M.S. in computer science
  • M.S. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science

17. University of Michigan

The computer science and engineering program at the University of Michigan originated in 1957 and is now home to the prestigious Michigan Robotics department. The institute has more than 20 full-time faculty. In addition to its degree programs, the college offers several AI specialty labs on the topics of assistive technology, constraint-based reasoning, human-centered computing, and multiagent and economic systems.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in robotics
  • M.S. in robotics
  • Ph.D. in robotics

18. University of Minnesota

The University of Minnesota offers AI research opportunities for computer science and engineering students. Areas include AI, robotics, computer vision, human-robot interaction, NLP and applications of robotics and AI in domains such as medicine, agriculture and manufacturing.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science
  • B.A. in computer science
  • Minor in computer science
  • B.S. in data science
  • M.S. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science

19. University of Pennsylvania

The computer science department at the University of Pennsylvania began as part of its engineering department, founded in 1850. In 1979, the College of Engineering and Applied Science became the current School of Engineering and Applied Science, the current home of the computer science program. AI labs include the General Robotics, Automation, Sensing & Perception Lab (GRASP); Penn Research in Machine Learning; and the Artificial Intelligence in Biomedical Imaging Lab (AIBIL).

Available degree programs:

  • B.S.E. in computer science
  • M.S.E. in computer and information science

20. University of Pittsburgh

The University of Pittsburgh is known for having one of the oldest computer science departments, founded in 1966. Degree focuses include data visualization and imaging, algorithms, intelligent systems, AI and biomedical informatics. Research groups include NLP and information retrieval, AI and law, and machine learning and decision-making.

Available degree programs:

  • M.S. in intelligent systems
  • Ph.D. in intelligent systems

21. University of Southern California

The Institute for Creative Technologies at USC has a reputation as a leader in AI. The program meshes the Department of Computer Science with the Center for Body Computing and Keck School of Medicine. Together, they have made advancements in both healthcare and AI, offering medical patients the chance to receive advanced medical treatment without physically visiting the facility.

Available degree program:

  • M.S. in computer science (artificial intelligence)

22. University of Texas at Austin

As one of the largest educational institutions in the U.S. in terms of students, the University of Texas offers more than 100 undergraduate and 170 graduate degree programs. Computer science degrees can include a concentration in machine learning and AI and be paired with research groups, including the Laboratory for Artificial Intelligence; Machine Learning Research Group; Data Mining Lab; Neural Networks Research Group; and Vision, Cognition, and Action Virtual Reality Lab.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science
  • B.A. in computer science
  • B.S. Turing Scholars in computer science
  • B.S. teaching in computer science
  • Integrated B.S./M.S. in computer science
  • M.S. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science

23. University of Washington

The University of Washington offers both undergraduate and graduate programs in computer science and engineering, with varying focuses and research groups in data science, neuroscience and AI.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science
  • B.S. in computer engineering
  • M.S. in computer science
  • Ph.D. in computer science and engineering

24. Yale University

Yale's Department of Computer Science was originally founded on the cutting-edge theories of computation, AI, numerical analysis and systems. Today, it focuses on foundational concepts, as well as interdisciplinary studies, offering joint majors in cooperation with the Departments of Electrical Engineering, Economics, Mathematics and Psychology. AI-related research areas include robotics, NLP, AI and machine learning.

Available degree programs:

  • B.S. in computer science with an AI research focus
  • B.A. in computer science with an AI research focus
  • M.S. in computer science with an AI research focus
  • Ph.D. in computer science with an AI research focus

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