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Welcome to the world of Quantum Computers! Watch the video for an overview of this online course.

After twenty years as a subject of quiet academic research, suddenly talk about quantum computers is everywhere. You can use a quantum computer via the web, and perhaps soon buy one. Would you like to learn how they work?

Script and articles are available in Japanese and English in PDF format. Please find files in DOWNLOAD section at the bottom of this page. You can also turn on the subtitles in English or Japanese for all the videos.

[NOTE in JAPANESE] 全てのビデオは日本語字幕をオンにして視聴することができます。ビデオ開始後右下に出るピンクのマークで言語を選択してください。また、第1週のコンテンツの日本語版PDFは、このページの一番下にある DOWNLOAD というセクションにございますのでご利用ください。

[NOTE in Thai] เนื้อหาในวิดีโอทั้งหมดมีคำบรรยายภาษาไทย ผู้เรียนสามารถเลือกคำบรรยายภาษาไทยได้จากเครื่องหมายด้านขวาล่างของวิดีโอ หลังจากที่วิดีโอเริ่มเล่น สำหรับเนื้อหาภาษาไทยของสัปดาห์ที่ 1 ผู้เรียนสามารถดาวน์โหลดได้จากหน้าโฮมเพจ Step 1.1 ในส่วน DOWNLOAD

[NOTE in Indonesian] Naskah video dan artikel tersedia dalam Bahasa Indonesia, Jepang, dan Inggris dalam format PDF. Dapatkan berkas di bagian DOWNLOAD di bagian bawah laman ini. Anda juga dapat menampilkan subtitle dalam Bahasa Indonesia, Jepang, dan Inggris untuk semua video.

What’s a quantum computer?

Okay, maybe we should pause to tell you what a quantum computer is. Simply put, it’s a computer that uses quantum effects to calculate the results of some functions far faster than an ordinary (classical) computer can. That’s really not a lot of help, though.

You have probably heard that, in quantum mechanics, an electron or a photon sometimes behaves like a particle, and sometimes like a wave. Light makes beautiful patterns on a soap bubble thanks to waves, but we can also count photons one by one. Researchers all around the world are investigating a bunch of different ways to build quantum computers, but they all have this in common: a quantum computer takes advantage of both the wave nature and particle nature, using interference and quantum entanglement, to reduce the number of times we have to perform some calculation.

The excitement comes from their behavior as problems get harder: maybe increasing the size of a problem (for example, boosting the number of cities you are planning to visit on a trip by one) doubles the amount of time it would take a regular computer to find your best route, but only raises the time on a quantum computer by, say, twenty seconds. The actual size of the advantage a quantum computer has depends on a lot of factors, though, and you will learn about some of them in this course.

A four week journey

In this course, we will dive into quantum computing head first, but not without preparing. In Week 1, we will study the key concepts, beginning with how waves interfere with each other and leading toward quantum entanglement, which Einstein called “spooky action at a distance”. In Week 2, we move into the heart of quantum computing. The week is divided into four major Activities: Qubits, Entanglement, Basic Algorithm Idea, and State Variables. Across those Activities, you will learn about the seven key concepts needed to grasp quantum computing. In Week 3, we will examine some of the important quantum algorithms in detail. And in the final week, we will talk about devices that can make and control each kind of state variable, and meet some of the people and companies building real quantum computers.

Each week, you will watch videos and read articles, answer quizzes and discuss with your fellow learners. Some quizzes will use interactive applications to help you understand concepts and answer questions, and designs for several 3-D printable objects are provided both for fun and to help vision-impaired learners.

At the end, please check your understanding in the final Test step.

Join us on our four-week journey into one of the twenty-first century’s most exciting technologies!

Further study

Of course, in just a few weeks of a few hours a week, you can take only the first steps into this exciting new computational paradigm. If you want to learn more, the course ends with an Article on Further Study. If, during the course, you want to dig deeper into any individual topic, feel free to leap ahead to that step and follow the links there.

Video Communication Trial (BANSOU Videos)

In addition to the course lecture, we will upload short video clips on YouTube. The videos will include Interviews (of lead educators as well as mentors, etc.), Discussions (among the educators), Tips and Feedback.

BANSOU (伴走/伴奏) is a Japanese word, meaning that we ‘run together’ towards the goal. The focus of this trial is to support creating a sense of ‘connectedness’ and ‘empathy’ between the educators and learners, and we hope you enjoy watching the videos alongside the course.

Organizing team

This course will be led by Professor Rodney Van Meter and Project Research Associate Takahiko Satoh from Keio University.

Educators and Organizers From the left: Rodney Van Meter and Takahiko Satoh.

During the course, three students from Rod’s Lab – Takaaki Matsuo and Shin Nishio will assist you in addition to Professor Keiko Okawa and Motoki Yasui from Keio FutureLean supporting team.

Follow the team to read their responses to learners throughout the course.

Important notes

  • All videos have English and Japanese subtitles. You can choose one of those by clicking the bubble mark at the right cover of the video.
  • All steps have English and Japanese text of articles and video scripts which you can find as PDFs under the “DOWNLOADS” section at the bottom of the first step of each week.
  • We have included a glossary for your reference. You can consult the glossary by downloading the PDF version which is available from the “DOWNLOADS” section below. If you come across other words that you would like us to add to the glossary, please tell us in the comments section.
  • When you complete each step, select the Mark as complete button before selecting the forwarded arrow to move on.
  • If you are new to FutureLearn, take a look at the Using Futurelearn section for information on how to get the best out of the course.

Get extra benefits, upgrade your course

You can now get extra benefits by upgrading this course, including:

Unlimited access to the course: Go at your own pace with unlimited access to the course for as long as it exists on FutureLearn.

A Certificate of Achievement or Statement of Participation: To help you demonstrate your learning we’ll send you a Certificate of Achievement or Statement of Participation when you become eligible.

Find out more




全てのビデオは日本語字幕をオンにして視聴することができます。ビデオ開始後右下に出るピンクのマークで言語を選択してください。また、第1週のコンテンツの日本語版PDFは、このページの一番下にある DOWNLOAD というセクションにございますのでご利用ください。











当然のことながら、週あたり数時間のこのコースだけでは、量子コンピュータの初歩的なところまでしか学習できません。コース終了後も更に学びたい方のための参考書籍や関連コースを、コース最後の記事「4.25 更に学びたい方へ」に準備しましたので、参照して下さい。コースの途中でより深く学習したくなった場合にも、いつでも参考にしてください。


このコースは慶應義塾大学のRodney Van Meter教授と佐藤貴彦助教が担当します。

Educators and Organizers 左からRodney Van Meterさんと佐藤 貴彦さんです。

コース中は慶應義塾大学の大川 恵子教授と慶應 Future Learnチームの安井 元規さんに加え、バンミーター研から松尾 賢明さん、西尾 真さんの2人の生徒がサポートしています。



  • 各週の最初のステップの__DOWNLOADS__から、その週の講義のPDFをダウンロードすることができます。
  • 用語集を用意しています。用語集は、このページの下部にある__DOWNLOADS__の部分から、PDFで取得することが可能です。もし用語集に存在しない単語で、追加してほしい単語がありましたら、そのセクションにその旨のコメントをお願いします。
  • 各ステップが終わるごとに、Mark as completeを押して、完了を報告してください。
  • 初めてFutureLearnを利用する方は、どのようにコースを進めていくのが良いのか、”Using Futurelearn”というページを見てみてください。


私たちは、オンライン学習において教育者や学習者の人となり、背景を知ることで学習に対してどのような効果・影響が出るかということを研究しています。 これらのビデオはその研究の一部です。





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Understanding Quantum Computers

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