Computer Science Degree vs AI degree

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Sergio000
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#1
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
#1
Hi,
I've always been thinking of a straight up computer science degree. However, at my work experience at BHGE, the computing team all told me to specialise my degree at first as supposedly having a degree in say AI or networks (specialising) is more valuable than a general cs degree which supposedly doesn't go into enough detail. What do you guys think? I always thought a general CS was more valued and kept more doors open, but this has made me consider.
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winterscoming
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#2
Report 3 years ago
#2
Both are equally 'valuable' really; the eventual classification you achieve (e.g. 1st vs 2:1) will make a much bigger difference in terms of how valuable your qualification is (e.g. when applying to postgraduate courses or graduate schemes).

The value of specialisation vs generalisation (i.e. the skills you learn on that degree) really depends upon your aspirations and whether you're interested in pursuing a job related to that degree, so from that point of view nobody can really tell you whether one is more valuable than the other.

If you're completely unsure what direction you want to take (Which is absolutely fine by the way. Most people have no idea what they eventually want to do when they apply to university), then a general Computer science or computing degree could help keep your options open, however the 'best' degree for most people is whatever course or subject you feel you would most enjoy studying and gives you the best chance at achieiving a 1st by the time you graduate. Realistically you're more likely to be successful if you're motivated to study and learn about the subject you've chosen, so only you can decide that really.

Whether you specialise in an area such as networking or AI, a lot of core Computer Science concepts are common (Critical thinking, analytical and problem solving skills, computational thinking, programming). Some universities provide the opportunity to switch courses at the end of the first year, and you can always choose a different skillset later with a postgraduate course.

Lastly, if the university you're applying to offers an industrial placement year then this is a really good way of learning a lot of skills in a 'real world' environment away from academia and lectures, as well as being able to try out a career path to see whether it's something you enjoy. The industrial placement can have have a huge impact in helping you acquire specialist skills in areas like networking, security or software development, and also give you a lot of insight and perspective when deciding which path to take after graduating.
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poohat
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#3
Report 3 years ago
#3
Most university course offerings are just marketing. A university will offer a Computer Science BSc but market research will show that there is student demand for (eg) Artificial Intelligence so they will create a new degree called "Computer Science with Artificial Intelligence" which runs alongside the straight CS one, and is 95% identical to it except some of the optional modules become compulsory and there might be 1-2 new modules that didnt exist before (but which students on the straight CS degree can take anyway).

So the short answer is: it probably doesnt matter. I'd go with the more general CS degree but make sure that 3rd year offers a good range of AI related modules (noone really uses the term 'AI' anymore, but the things to look for are machine learning, computer vision, robotics, applied statistics, etc).
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