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Course feature: artificial intelligence on Microsoft Azure: machine learning and Python basics


Can you tell us a bit about CloudSwyft and what you do?

A Microsoft global education and learning partner, we are a team of energetic individuals who are passionate about helping closing the technology skills gap and driving higher employability in the IT sector. 

Founded in the Philippines and based across Asia-Pacific, we are acutely aware of the tremendous challenges that employers across industries have in sourcing prospective candidates with the right technology skills and, equally, that these candidates have in developing these skills and receiving credible certifications that will allow them to apply for these roles. The current environment has seen a rapid amplification of this dynamic on both sides.

Technology skills – regardless of whether the learner is a beginner or experienced – are only effectively learned by practical application. In the same way a golfer aspiring to be admitted to the PGA Tour cannot effectively improve their putting technique by watching videos or even a coach live in action, a technology skills learner must have the ability to actively engage in practical exercises as they progress through their course. 

We offer hundreds of technology courses that are diverse in terms of skills and difficulty levels – and have recently partnered with FutureLearn to create more – but they all have a common feature: they integrate CloudSwyft’s Hands-on Labs, which are live, cloud-based applications and tools that are aligned to each specific course and allow learners to perform practical exercises through their browser and to be graded accordingly. This innovative functionality enables us to provide digital credentials upon course completion, with integration of those credentials directly into LinkedIn.

Together with FutureLearn, we are incredibly proud and humbled to be playing an active role in helping learners around the world develop ‘future-ready’ skills and helping them get new jobs in the most fast-moving employment environment in a generation. 

What courses will you be providing through FutureLearn?

In partnership with Microsoft and UiPath, we will be launching a number of microcredentials and short courses on the FutureLearn platform – ranging from Data Analysis to Artificial Intelligence, Software Development, C++, Robotics Process Automation and more. All courses will come with Hands-on Labs and digital credentials – consistent with our overriding objective to deliver practical skills and to have learners ‘employment-ready’ upon course completion.

You recently launched your first microcredential through FutureLearn, can you tell us a bit about this, how it’s built and who it’s aimed at?

The microcredential is called Artificial Intelligence on Microsoft Azure: Machine Learning and Python Basics. It includes an introduction to Azure Cloud and Python programming and is designed to prepare learners for jobs ranging from a business analyst to an AI engineer. 

It includes 40 hours of Hands-on Labs usage for learners to really sharpen their skills and they will also be able to acquire digital badges and credentials for each course and lab they successfully accomplish that they can share and add on their LinkedIn professional profiles and social media, as well as vouchers to sit two Microsoft Role-Based Azure certification exams (worth over US$200) – getting learners well prepared for their career as an AI developer or engineer. 

This microcredential also comes with two complementary Microsoft Official digital books on Artificial Intelligence and Microsoft Azure Cloud for each learner to be used as references, as special offering for the early bird sign-ups until August 31, 2020. 

You mention Hands-on Labs, what are some examples of these you have prepared for this microcredential?

Azure Cloud Fundamentals – In this course within the Artificial Intelligence on Microsoft Azure: Machine Learning and Python Basics microcredential learners are provided with their dedicated Azure Cloud pass so they can navigate through and perform lab exercises related to Azure cloud administration and management.

Introduction to Python Programming – The Hands-on Lab environment provided for learners on this course within the microcredential includes applications and tools such as Jupyter Notebook and other Python files or packages that are required in performing lab exercises to have practical experience on developing Python lists, functions, and more.

Introduction to Artificial Intelligence and Designing and Implementing an Azure AI Solution – These two main courses are the most critical courses within the microcredential where learners can have access to a full functional Hands-on Lab environments to perform activities around Azure Machine Learning Services, Azure Notebook, Azure Cognitive Services, Jupyter Notebook, while applying Python programming and Azure administration skills in creating bots, developing languages that would understand the LUIS application and integrating the Cognitive Services with Bots and Agents.

You’re able to offer other FutureLearn partners use of your Hands-on Labs product, can you tell partners a bit more about how this works?

We are thrilled to be a FutureLearn partner alongside some of the world’s leading universities and organisations. We believe that our Hands-on Labs can be integrated into the vast majority of technology courses offered through FutureLearn – helping the course creators offer a practical and truly differentiated, premium learning experience. Each Hands-on Labs template, provided on a white label basis, is customized to each specific course. 

More information on how partners can integrate Hands-on Labs within their courses will be available in the near future.  

We also offer an innovative Blended Learning Experience solution: this allows learners to book mentors for one-on-one remote sessions for guidance on various course modules and on practical examples using Hands-on Labs. 


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