Single-Course English 5 ECTS

Deep learning

Overall Course Objectives

Machine perception of natural signals has improved a lot in the recent years thanks to deep learning (DL). Improved image recognition with DL will make self-driving cars possible and is leading to more accurate image-based medical diagnosis. Improved speech recognition and natural language processing with DL will lead to many new intelligent applications within health-care and IT. Pattern recognition with DL in large datasets will give new tools for drug discovery, condition monitoring and many other data-driven applications.

The purpose of this course is to give the student a detailed understanding of the deep artificial neural network models, their training, computational frameworks for deployment on fast graphical processing units, their limitations and how to formulate learning in a diverse range of settings. These settings include classification, regression, sequences and other types of structured input and outputs and for reasoning in complex environments.

Learning Objectives

  • Demonstrate knowledge of machine learning terminology such as likelihood function, maximum likelihood, Bayesian inference, feed-forward, convolutional and Transformer neural networks, and error back propagation.
  • Understand and explain the choices and limitations of a model for a given setting.
  • Apply and analyze results from deep learning models in exercises and own project work.
  • Plan, delimit and carry out an applied or methods-oriented project in collaboration with fellow students and project supervisor.
  • Assess and summarize the project results in relation to aims, methods and available data.
  • Carry out the project and interpret results by use of computational framework for GPU programming such as PyTorch.
  • Structure and write a final short technical report including problem formulation, description of methods, experiments, evaluation and conclusion.
  • Organize and present project results at the final project presentation and in report.
  • Read, evaluate and give feedback to work of other students.

Course Content

Course outline week 1-8:
1. Introduction to statistical machine learning, feed-forward neural networks (FFNN) and error back-propagation. Part I do it yourself on pen and paper.
2. Introduction to statistical machine learning, feed-forward neural networks (FFNN) and error back-propagation. Part II do it yourself in NumPy.
3. Introduction to statistical machine learning, feed-forward neural networks (FFNN) and error back-propagation. Part III PyTorch.
4. Convolutional neural networks (CNN) + presentation of student projects.
5. Sequence modelling for text data with Transformers.
6. Tricks of the trade and data science with PyTorch + Start of student projects.
7. Variational learning and generative adversarial networks for unsupervised and semi-supervised learning.
8. Reinforcement learning – policy gradient and deep Q-learning.

Starting from week 6 and full time from week 9 and the rest of the term will be spent on tutored project work.

Recommended prerequisites

02450/01005/02405/02402/02403/02409/02002/02631/02632/02633/02634, Calculus (chain rule of differentiation), basic linear algebra, basic multivariate probability theory, statistics and machine learning (maximum likelihood, Bayes, over- and underfitting, regularization) and programming preferably in Python or PyTorch.

Teaching Method

flipped classroom (video lectures, online quizzes, peer-grading, classroom in-depth discussions), exercises, student project (1-5 student groups).


Deep learning based machine learning is behind many recent big advances in speech recognition, image classification and reinforcement learning. These developments have largely been driven by availability of fast computers, abundance of data and algorithmic improvements for training neural networks. Next up will likely be specialized artificial intelligence applications within text understanding and sensors systems. This will have impact for business intelligence, search, dialogue and question-answering systems, condition monitoring, autonomous systems and many other areas.

Deep learning and machine learning in general sees a lot of activity both within academia and industry. This course will provide the student the necessary foundation to apply deep learning in both research and industry.

This is a machine learning course with focus on computation and application. The project work will be carried out either with researchers at DTU Compute or in a machine learning based company.

The course is a part of the focus area Machine Learning and Signal Processing of the Master of Mathematical Modelling and Computing program.

Limited number of seats

Minimum: 20.

Please be aware that this course will only be held if the required minimum number of participants is met. You will be informed 8 days before the start of the course, whether the course will be held.

See course in the course database.





13 weeks




DTU Lyngby Campus

Course code 02456
Course type Candidate
Semester start Week 35
Semester end Week 48
Days Mon 13-17

7.500,00 DKK

Please note that this course has participants limitation. Read more