Module details for Applied Mathematics and Artificial Intelligence


This module introduces students to Artificial Intelligence, specifically in Computer Games, and the mathematics behind AI.


The aim of this module is to provide the student with: the practical skills and underpinning mathematical knowledge to select, design and implement AI techniques and technologies, in real-time applications such as a computer game or immersive product.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module the student should be able to:

1.  Comprehend the underpinning mathematics of AI techniques e.g. simple mathematical models of reinforcement, supervised and unsupervised learning by machines.

2.  Develop a critical understanding of AI techniques and technologies.

3.  Evaluate and implement the appropriate AI technology and technique in a computer games.

Indicative Content

1 An introduction to AI for Games

The importance of good Game AI. The difference between Game AI and so called ‘real’ or Academic AI and their relative advantages and disadvantages.

2 'Traditional’ Game AI

Rule Based Systems, Finite State Machines.

3 AI Techniques

Fuzzy Logic and Fuzzy State Machines, Case Based Reasoning, Genetic Algorithms, Reinforcement Learning, Probabilistic Methods, Artificial Neural Networks, Clustering Algorithms.

4 Deep Learning in Games

Use of state of the art AI models in games to drive character control and Raytracing.

5 Markov Decision Processes

Value iteration, Policy iteration, Q learning, Learning Automata

6 Unsupervised Machine Learning Models

Clustering, Feature Identification with Singular Value Decomposition

7 Numerical Analysis of Neural Networks

Gradient Descent, Backpropagation, Eigenvalues, Condition Numbers and Convergence

8 Stochastic Optimization

Stochastic Gradient Descent, Genetic Algorithms and Fitness Functions

9 The use of AI in games:

Combining AI techniques to produce A-life and Intelligent Agents. The future of AI in games.

Teaching and Learning Work Loads

Teaching and Learning Method Hours
Lecture 18
Tutorial/Seminar 18
Practical Activity 12
Assessment 80
Independent 72
Total 200

Guidance notes

SCQF Level - The Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework provides an indication of the complexity of award qualifications and associated learning and operates on an ascending numeric scale from Levels 1-12 with SCQF Level 10 equating to a Scottish undergraduate Honours degree.

Credit Value – The total value of SCQF credits for the module. 20 credits are the equivalent of 10 ECTS credits. A full-time student should normally register for 60 SCQF credits per semester.


We make every effort to ensure that the information on our website is accurate but it is possible that some changes may occur prior to the academic year of entry. The modules listed in this catalogue are offered subject to availability during academic year 2021/22 , and may be subject to change for future years.