Microsoft Introduces New Professional Certificate on Generative AI
Microsoft has added a new training and certification program to its Skills for Jobs initiative, focusing on the latest advancements in artificial intelligence (AI). The company’s Career Essentials in Generative AI program offers a free course on generative AI, a technology that can generate various types of content. This form of AI has gained significant attention with companies like OpenAI, Microsoft, and Google launching their own AI chatbots for information retrieval and content creation.
As AI continues to permeate various industries, more workers will need to understand how to effectively utilize this technology. Recognizing this need, Microsoft has developed the new professional certificate on generative AI. The program consists of five classes, starting with the basics of AI and progressing to AI frameworks. Upon passing the assessment, participants will receive the Career Essentials certificate.
The individual sessions in the course cover a range of topics, including the fundamentals of generative AI, its history, popular models, ethical considerations, and more. Participants will also learn about the distinctions between search engines and reasoning engines in the context of generative AI. Additionally, the course explores how to streamline and automate work using Microsoft Bing Chat, and delves into the ethical challenges associated with generative AI.
Initially offered in English, the certificate will soon be available in Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Simplified Chinese, and Japanese. As with Microsoft’s other Career Essentials Professional Certificates, the AI classes will be accessible and free until 2025.
In addition to the certificate-driven training in AI, Microsoft is launching a toolkit for teachers and trainers who provide training to various communities. This toolkit will include downloadable content for trainers on the practical applications of AI, as well as an AI course designed specifically for educators.
Furthermore, Microsoft is introducing two challenges to promote learning in AI. The Learn AI Skills challenge, starting on July 17, aims to teach individuals AI skills using Microsoft products. The company is also partnering with GitHub and data.org on the Generative AI Skills Grant challenge, an open grant program targeting nonprofit organizations, social enterprises, and educational or research institutions focused on implementing AI for historically marginalized populations globally.
According to a survey conducted for Microsoft’s Work Trend Index, 62% of respondents reported spending excessive time searching for information during a typical workday. While nearly half expressed concerns about AI potentially replacing their jobs, 70% stated that they would gladly offload tasks to AI to alleviate their workloads.
This new professional certificate on generative AI reflects Microsoft’s commitment to equipping individuals with the necessary skills to thrive in an AI-driven world. With the increasing prevalence of AI across industries, understanding and utilizing this technology is becoming essential for workers in various roles. By offering free courses and certifications, Microsoft aims to democratize access to AI education and empower individuals to leverage AI effectively in their professional endeavors.