The robots are coming and they’re after our jobs. That’s the message put forward by all kinds of sources, from The Guardian to The New York Times, Elon Musk to Barack Obama.

There’s no doubt that automated applications and the artificial-intelligent technology that powers them are becoming capable of tasks once the sole reserve of humans. We’re all more aware of it too. As part of its Workforce of the Future report, PwC found that 37% of workers are worried about automation putting jobs at risk, and 60% think ‘few people will have stable, long-term employment in the future’.

Is the picture really this bleak though? Will we all eventually find our roles replaced by AI automation, or could this technology actually compliment human ingenuity?

Driverless cars, automated marketing and robot interviewers

You don’t need to look far to find examples of AI automation. Autonomous vehicles now feel tantalisingly close; we’ve just seen the UK’s first driverless fleet demo in a ‘complex urban environment’. In the business world, AI is automating a rapidly-increasing number of processes, from the simple to the surprisingly involved, such as verifying employment histories and creating customer case studies. It’s not just menial tasks that automation is taking on; its remit is increasingly sophisticated, across virtually every industry and sector.

You’d be forgiven for thinking that we’d created a technology that will eventually usurp us, in true Terminator style. But there’s a lot more to a successful career than carrying out a series of tasks or assignments. The objectives of automated applications may be becoming more complex, but they’re still built with a singular purpose – one task they do repeatedly - they can’t do anything we might ask of them. The way AI applications communicate with us may be becoming more sophisticated but, no matter how human they sound, no application is able to reason, judge or negotiate like a human, and that’s key to securing our professional futures.

Seizing the opportunity offered by AI automation

Automation no longer seems such a threat to our jobs when we realise that there’s so much we bring to our roles that AI simply cannot replicate. In fact, understanding that we alone possess human qualities like emotional intelligence and gut instinct allows us the freedom to really push what could be possible through automation and computer science, without the fear of losing ourselves to it.

Those with the right artificial intelligence and computer science skills can train AI automation to take care of the admin that monopolises our time and keeps us from the meatier stuff; the parts of our jobs we need all our human discernment, intuition and empathy through which to succeed.

No algorithm or machine learning training programme is going to start making mistakes through tiredness or distraction, nor fail to spot a data pattern due to bias, however subconscious. We have an opportunity to apply automation to repetitive, time-intensive tasks and heavy-duty big data analysis, so we can focus on driving business growth through creativity, strategy and relationship-building. The route to this opportunity is computer science.

Fuelling automation with a career in computer science

AI automation is man-made, so let’s make it work for us in the best way it can. As well as being in high demand amongst employers, a solid foundation in computer science can enable you to solve unique business challenges with code, and work to push AI automation to its full potential.

Covering a wide range of essential digital theories and principles, an online MSc in Artificial Intelligence can give you the skills you need to work at the cutting edge of AI automation. The online MSc in Artificial Intelligence at the University of Bath for example, is taught and delivered by leading figures in the field, who demonstrate the technical workings of systems engineering, machine learning, robotics and humans and intelligent machines.

Put your human acuity to use at the University of Bath

With links to major tech corporations and the Institute of Coding – an initiative created to break down barriers to digital learning and employment - studying online with the University of Bath provides excellent career building opportunities, as well as the chance to network and collaborate with like-minded professionals from around the world.

It’s the ideal next step to take you into a career in AI automation so, if you’re interested in finding out more, click through to discover what else you could achieve with the Artificial Intelligence online MSc.

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