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Informatics: CISA: Automated Reasoning, Agents, Data Intensive Research, Knowledge Management (MScR)

Course Description

Research profile

In this information age, the formalised representation of knowledge and automation of reasoning form the basis of the computerised systems that shape our world.

At the Centre for Intelligent Systems and their Applications (CISA), we lead the way in research into this vital field, both in facilities and quality of research.

You'll find a wide range of research areas within CISA, from abstract research using logic and theorem-proving methods to systems-oriented investigations. Our current research groups encompass:

agents and multi-agent systems
knowledge systems
mathematical reasoning
planning and activity management
software systems and processes.

Intelligent systems are a driving force for change in areas ranging from reasoning on the web to industrial supply chain management. Aided by our links with commercial and government bodies, the research you will undertake could shape the future of technology.

CISA includes one of the most innovative collaborations between research and business – our Artificial Intelligence Applications Institute (AIAI). Through its resources and the engagement of staff and students in consultancy, training and joint projects, we offer solutions to commercial and government clients through the application of newly researched techniques.

Training and support

You will carry out research work within a research group under the guidance of a supervisor. You may also attend lectures that are relevant to your research topic, as prescribed by your supervisor.

You will be expected to attend seminars and meetings of relevant research groups. Periodic reviews of progress are conducted to assist with research planning.

A programme of transferable skills courses facilitates broader professional development in a wide range of topics, from writing and presentation skills to entrepreneurship and career strategies.

The School of Informatics holds a Silver Athena SWAN award, in recognition of our commitment to advance the representation of women in science, mathematics, engineering and technology. The School is deploying a range of strategies to help female staff and students of all stages in their careers and we seek regular feedback from our research community on our performance.


The award-winning Informatics Forum is an international research facility for computing and related areas. It houses more than 400 research staff and students, providing office, meeting and social spaces.

It also contains two robotics labs, an instrumented multimedia room, eye-tracking and motion capture systems, and a full recording studio amongst other research facilities. Its spectacular atrium plays host to many events, from industry showcases and student hackathons to major research conferences.

Nearby teaching facilities include computer and teaching labs with more than 250 machines, 24-hour access to IT facilities for students, and comprehensive support provided by dedicated computing staff.

Among our entrepreneurial initiatives is Informatics Ventures, set up in 2008 to support globally ambitious software companies in Scotland and nurture a technology cluster to rival Boston, Pittsburgh, Kyoto and Silicon Valley.

Career opportunities

While your research studies are a perfect route to a career in academia, your degree could also take you into the commercial world of applied intelligent systems.

Software developers and the users of automated planning systems are among those who rely on the insights of our research. NASA and animation company Pixar are just two of the organisations that have recently employed our graduates.

Visit the Informatics: CISA: Automated Reasoning, Agents, Data Intensive Research, Knowledge Management (MScR) page on the University of Edinburgh website for more details!

Entry Requirements

A UK 2:1 degree, or its international equivalent, typically in an area of Informatics, such as artificial intelligence, cognitive science or computer science. You may also be considered if your degree is in one of the following areas: engineering, linguistics, mathematics, philosophy, physics or psychology. You will need to have experience in computer programming.

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