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Postgraduate Study

Course closed:

Ethics of AI, Data and Algorithms is no longer accepting new applications.


The taught elements include the core module “Introduction to the Ethics of ADA” and eight elective specialisation modules, covering specialist topics. These topics vary year by year, reflecting the current research interests of staff. Students should attend the core module plus at least four elective modules. Late Lent and Easter has a twice-weekly works in progress seminar, where students will present and discuss their individual dissertation research.

For their supervised research, students work individually with domain experts to produce four pieces of written work: a Critical Analysis Essay of up to 3,000 words, two Research Essays of up to 5,000 words and up to 7,000 words respectively, and a Dissertation of up to 12,000 words.

In addition, students are encouraged to integrate themselves into the research culture of CFI by attending research seminars, reading groups, conferences and other events at the centre, as well as other lectures, seminars and events relevant to their interests within the wider University.

One to one supervision

Students can expect 10 hours of one-on-one supervision: one for the Critical Analysis Essay, two for Research Essay 1, three for Research Essay 2 and four for the Dissertation.

The University of Cambridge publishes an annual Code of Practice which sets out the University’s expectations regarding supervision.

Seminars & classes

At least 36 hours of taught seminars per year (12 for the core module, 6 hours per elective module).

24 hours of student-led work in progress seminars per year.


Students are encouraged to attend lectures, research seminars and reading groups relevant to their interests.


Students receive feedback on each of their pieces of written work and from seminar leaders on their work in progress presentation. They also receive feedback and termly reports from the Course Leaders, and marks and examiners' reports for each of their pieces of written work.


Thesis / Dissertation

Students submit a dissertation of up to 12,000 words at the end of Easter Term on a topic picked in consultation with their supervisor. The Dissertation accounts for 50 per cent of the final mark for the course. A viva is not normally required but may be requested by the Examiners.


Students submit three essays over the course of the first two terms: a Critical Analysis Essay of up to 3,000 words, and two Research Essays of up to 5,000 words and 7,000 words respectively.

The Critical Analysis Essay should use the theoretical resources provided by the Core Module to critically analyse either a piece of technical research or a policy document. The choice of documents is set at the beginning of the course. This essay contributes 5 per cent to the final mark of the course.

For the Research Essays students will pick and research a suitable topic in consultation with their supervisor. Research Essay 1 contributes 15 per cent and Research Essay 2 contributes 25 percent to the final mark of the course.


Students will give a 20-minute presentation on their dissertation research at one of the work in progress seminars. The presentation will be evaluated by the seminar leader and contributes 5 percent to the final mark of the course.

Key Information

9 months full-time

Study Mode : Taught

Master of Philosophy

Faculty of Philosophy This course is advertised in multiple departments. Please see the Overview tab for more details.

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Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
March 26, 2024
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2024

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Course Funding Deadline
Dec. 5, 2023
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 11, 2023

These deadlines apply to applications for courses starting in Michaelmas 2024, Lent 2025 and Easter 2025.

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