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Marshall professors design curricula for artificial intelligence instruction

Marshall University, in collaboration with West Virginia University and Florida International University, is working on developing an advanced curricula that will educate the next generation in artificial intelligence and build on the foundation of artificial intelligence (AI) research.   

Funding for the work was made available through a $4.9 million federal grant of which Marshall received a $1.25 million sub award. The collaboration among the three institutions will yield critical materials for AI cybersecurity readiness and is part of a larger partnership that received funding in the 2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

“Marshall’s initiative will incorporate explainable artificial intelligence (XAI) into training programs to enhance transparency and trust in AI systems,” said David Dampier, dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Sciences. “This integration will equip future professionals with the skills needed to identify and mitigate potential risks, ensuring they can navigate the complex landscape of AI-driven security challenges.” 

Haroon Malik, associate professor of computer sciences, is the principal investigator for the Marshall project and says the development puts the university at the forefront of AI education.  

“These courses will provide a robust foundation in adversarial explainable AI (AdvCAI) and robust AI for intelligent systems and control,” Malik said. “These courses will also address high-assurance Department of Defense (DoD) applications by teaching students to estimate the reliability and trustworthiness of AI models.” 

In addition to developing two AI courses, Marshall is creating an AI-based personalized learning portal set to revolutionize collaboration and learning outcomes. This innovative system, featuring an AI-based personalized tutor, will provide tailored guidance and feedback, assisting with homework and complex code debugging through advanced natural language processing, thereby enhancing the learning experience. 

A third component of the grant is focused on AI research, specifically with Marshall investigators exploring new ways to enhance the resilience of cyber-physical systems (CPS) through AI. By addressing current vulnerabilities, such as attacks and out-of-distribution samples, the team aims to improve the understanding of AI systems’ decision-making processes within CPS, ultimately strengthening their security and reliability. 

“This initiative underscores Marshall’s unwavering commitment to advancing artificial intelligence and cybersecurity,” Dampier said. “By investing in these critical areas, the university is dedicated to shaping the future of AI-driven technologies and ensuring a secure technological world.”  

For more information on Marshall’s cybersecurity programs and initiatives, please visit:  

Home – Institute for Cyber Security ( 

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