Microsoft Azure Fundamentals AI-900 is one of the most basic technical certificates to pass. You do not have to show deep Artificial Intelligence (AI) knowledge here. This is an entry-level certificate, which allows you to better understand the foundations.
This blog post is part of a series of short articles about certification recommendations for Project Managers working in IT industry.
You do not need to be a technology freak to explore basic concepts. It is not directly connected with the Project Manager’s job. However, if you are working with technology on a daily basis, it can help you understand current trends.
Vital issues about AI
In preparation for this exam, you will learn that you are using AI solutions every day and gain an understanding of the guidelines for responsible AI. After all, AI must be developed and used in an ethical way.
Let’s consider a few things: imagine an autopilot has caused a crash. Who is responsible for it? The engineer who coded it? The PM who supervised the project? The company or person who launched the product? Or the regulatory body that granted permission to use it? Not so easy, right?
Now, imagine another example. You are having a phone call; you pick up, and you start a conversation with someone. After a few sentences, you are starting to suspect you are not talking to a human, but a well-trained AI. How do you feel? Don’t you think it would be fair if, at the very beginning of the conversation, you will be informed that you are speaking with a “robot”? As you can see, AI transparency is an interesting issue to discuss.
The scope of the certification
If you are more of a tech geek, machine learning types and concepts might be more interesting for you. They describe how to prepare appropriate data, divide and train it. You will get familiar with basic computer vision features like image classification/analysis and object detection, which are already widely used in search engines. No one should be surprised by face or handwriting recognition features.
Another block is dedicated to so-called NLP (Natural Language Processing). Using Google, Facebook, and so on, we are not shocked anymore with language recognition, text understanding, reply recommendations or instant translations. It is the same when it comes to speech-to-text service and vice versa.
The last but not least part is conversational AI connected with chatbots and automated call centers. As you can see, the scope of this certificate might be engaging and very prospective.
How to prepare for the exam?
I recommend that you join free Microsoft Virtual Training Days. It will help you understand basic concepts. Complete your knowledge by accessing official Microsoft e-learning materials. This should be enough to give it a go.
The number of exam questions varies from 40 to 60. In general, you have to obtain around 70% to pass. To answer all questions, you will have 60 minutes. There are many types of questions like single-choice, multiple-choice, drag and drop or case studies.
The exam is proctored, so you will need to have your video and microphone on. The price varies between countries. If you are based in Poland, it will cost 69 USD. If you have participated in Microsoft Virtual Training Days, you will have it for free.
Why to study AI?
Depending on your career path and the projects you are currently working on, it is very likely you might encounter AI concepts. This certificate is only an introduction and passing it does not mean you have a deep understanding of the subject, but it will help you to conduct conversations on a high level. Even a basic awareness of the types of problems solvable by AI or Machine Learning solutions, the limitations of such approaches, as well as the building blocks available in Azure can mean the difference between starting all the right conversations as your project kicks off and losing precious time.
I bet that it will not be a waste of time. It will be beneficial in your work, if not now, then soon. Besides, you could have fascinating discussions with your peers at any time!
This article was co-authored by Magda Serafinowicz.
Hero image by Josh Calabrese, opens in a new window