Give your wallet a day off.
If both of those sound too pricey — here’s another option: 26 free artificial intelligence courses at Udacity. While a Udacity Nanodegree will set you back $399 a month, you can check out the course library and filter by “free courses” and “artificial intelligence” to find 26 un-paid courses.
As a bonus, you can also take a free no-code AI crash course from Obviously.AI.
Here’s an overview of some of the available Udacity courses:
Clearly, there are a lot of big tech names involved, which means that you’ll be taught by industry leaders. These are by no means “crash courses” either — they’re lengthy, in-depth, deep dives into their topics.
Even the linear algebra “refresher” course is a 4-month program that’ll you take you through vector operations, coding a library of vector operation functions, the geometric and algebraic interpretation of intersections of “flat” objects and how to solve real-world problems, and writing your own algorithm to find the intersections of sets of lines and planes.
That’s a mouthful.
In short, these courses are a great opportunity to learn from industry professionals and gain practical skills.
It’s important to remember that courses alone won’t be enough to get ahead in the AI industry.
Why You Need to Stand Out
The machine learning industry has become hyper-competitive due to a number of converging forces:
- The influx of students from hyped articles like “Data Scientist: The Sexiest Job of the 21st Century”
- 100 new universities launching AI programs in recent years, in the US alone (there are now even undergraduate AI programs)
- 50+ AI bootcamps
- Innumerable AutoML tools, giving employers cheaper alternatives to AI professionals
- 2020’s recession, which put many AI and data science projects on the chopping block
In short, the supply of talent coming from bootcamps, universities, and self-study has dramatically exploded, to the point that even entry-level data science and AI jobs get 1,000+ applicants in a number of days. Meanwhile, demand has stagnated with AutoML tools serving as a viable alternative, especially amidst an unprecedented recession in our session.
You’ll want to do more than just take courses to stand out in this environment. One powerful strategy is to pick an AI passion project and build and refine that as you progress through courses.
That way, you’ll have a valuable, usable product to show for your learnings — and not just another course on your LinkedIn. If you end up getting paying users, that’s just the cherry-on-top.
AI is becoming hyper-competitive, but taking these free courses and building your own AI projects can help you stand out.