Online LearningMath and Science6 Best Quantum Computing Courses for 2022 | Pros & Cons

6 Best Quantum Computing Courses for 2022 | Pros & Cons

Quantum computing is a computation utilizing quantum state properties to perform calculations. If available, quantum computers can process a tremendous amount of information at an unimaginable rate.

This technology is expected to be a game-changer for businesses and organizations. It will enable them to conduct tasks in a much shorter amount of time, significantly improving productivity in the process.

Although an actual quantum computer has not yet been built, tech companies worldwide are actively investing billions in this project, and every day they are getting closer to creating one. It is acceptable to assume that a quantum computer will perform some tasks for you in the next few decades.

Therefore, if you want to make sure you are at the front of the pack and ready to take advantage of quantum computing, you’ll want to take the time to learn more about it now.

This blog post will discuss the best courses to prepare yourself for the quantum computing environment. You can then select the one that suits your preferences and start learning right away.

Affiliate Disclosure: This article from Victory Tale contains affiliate links. If you purchase quantum computing courses through them, we will receive a small commission from our partners.

Nonetheless, we always value integrity and prioritize our audience’s interests. You can rest assured that we will present each course truthfully.

Things You Should Know

Introductory quantum computing courses have no prerequisites. You do not need a technical background in physics to enroll in any training or program. Knowledge of basic algebra will be sufficient for students to understand all the content.

However, advanced courses do have. You should have robust knowledge of the following:

Also, some programs may have additional prerequisites, which I will inform you about later in the sections below.

Criteria

Below are the criteria for the best quantum computing courses:

  • Taught by professors or industry experts
  • Available on a user-friendly learning platform
  • Provide excellent course materials
  • Offer exceptional value for money
  • Receive primarily positive reviews from actual students
  • My personal experience with the course, instructor, and platform (if any) must be positive.

Introductory Courses

1. Quantum Computing for Everyone

This edX program from the University of Chicago is unarguably one of the best choices for non-techies to learn about quantum computing. Upon completion, you will understand what enables quantum computing and how this technology will reform computer science.

best quantum computing courses from the university of chicago

Course Content

This course consists of two minor courses as follows:

Part I – The first part will introduce you to quantum physics principles and how they enable quantum computing. You will also learn about quantum operations and circuits and all the math behind them.

The second part of the course will discuss the impact of quantum computing. You will grasp which applications may benefit from the technology.

Part II – This part will delve into the technicals. You will explore the mathematical and programming aspects of quantum computing, which make it a reality. Furthermore, you will understand how to program with Qiskit, an open-source SDK for working with IBM quantum computers.

Subsequently, you will learn about quantum algorithms, such as the Bernstein-Vazarani algorithm and Simon’s algorithm.

Generally speaking, this program covers all the basics that beginners need to know by not drilling too deep into the advanced concepts.

What I like about the curriculum is that you will have the opportunity to gain some hands-on experience through programming labs. Specifically, you will create the first algorithm from quantum operations and calculate operation results that indicate the superior performance of quantum machines to traditional computers.

Regarding the pace, you should spend 3-5 hours per week, and you will complete the program in three months.

Auditing the entire program is free. However, the free option does not grant access to graded assignments, labs, and a certificate of completion. You may opt for the verified track, which offers complete access to the program instead. This track costs $358 one-time.

Note: If you want to learn more about quantum computing after taking the above courses, you may want to consider another program from the same university (see #4).

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Taught by two veteran instructors: an IBM Quantum Exchange postdoctoral scholar and a computer science professor
  • Beginner-friendly + Self-paced learning
  • Well-structured curriculum
  • Clear, intuitive explanations of quantum concepts with top-notch visuals and exceptional presentation slides
  • All text transcripts are easy to read.
  • Include a final exam to test your skills
  • Free auditing

Cons

  • Video lessons are not bite-sized. Hence, finding the part you want to rewatch, or review can be tedious.

2. Quantum 101: Quantum Computing & Quantum Internet

Suppose you want an introductory course that drills deeper into the technical than the first course. In this case, you should give this program from Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) a try.

Course Content

This program comprises two minor courses as follows:

1. The Hardware of a Quantum Computer – The first course will discuss solid-state qubits, the building blocks of a quantum computer. You will then explore how the four types of qubits can be built in reality.

Later, you will learn about quantum gates and how experts implement them on qubits. Upon completion, you will understand how quantum computers can be built and controlled.

2. Architecture, Algorithms, and Protocols of a Quantum Computer and Quantum Internet – The second course will go through the operations of prospective quantum computers. You will learn key concepts, including quantum algorithms, error-correction, compliers, micro-architectures, and programming languages for quantum computing.

Subsequently, the instructors will provide insights on the quantum internet. You will perceive why this futuristic technology can be built and its benefits.

I appreciate this program’s curriculum. It is easy to follow and covers many compelling topics. All lessons are bite-sized and equipped with a summary section, which is highly beneficial for students to review the concepts before the final exam.

According to TU Delft, you should spend 6-8 hours on the program, and you will complete it in three months. Auditing is again free, but you may want to pay $268 to access graded assignments and a digital certificate.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Taught by three professors from Qutech, a specialized research institute for quantum computing
  • One of the best courses for beginners to learn quantum computing
  • Self-paced learning
  • Bite-sized lessons with clear explanations
  • Include a critical takeaways section for each lesson and a final exam
  • Easy-to-read text transcripts

Cons

  • No tasks or projects for students to gain hands-on experience
  • A few students pointed out that some sections are less well-explained than others.

3. Understanding Quantum Computers

This course from Keio University, one of the most prestigious Japanese universities, will guide you through the critical concepts of quantum computing. You will perceive how quantum technologies are revolutionary for the computer science industry and the world.

Note: This course is in English, but there is a Japanese version as well.

online quantum computing courses on FutureLearn

Course Content

Below are the key topics that you will learn in this course:

  • Why do we need to build quantum computers
  • Principles of quantum computing
  • Quantum algorithms such as Shor’s algorithm and Grover’s algorithm
  • Quantum chemistry and machine learning
  • Qubits
  • Hardware and architecture
  • Error-correction
  • Key applications of quantum computing
  • and many more

Generally speaking, the curriculum covers the essentials that an interested layperson with decent mathematical knowledge can understand. It focuses on the “qualitative” or “low-math” aspect of quantum computing. Hence, it is an optimal course for high-school or college students who may want to test the waters.

The readings are informative and easy to understand

What I find fascinating are the readings. They are highly informative (for starters) and accompanied by exceptional visuals, including images, animations, and charts. Etc. I found its quality far better than those offered by most Coursera and edX programs.

However, compared to other introductory courses, this one is pretty short. It will not drill deep into advanced concepts. You can complete it in a month by spending only four hours per week.

As the course is available on the FutureLearn platform, you can audit it for free for four weeks. If you want to have full, permanent access (with assignments and a certificate), you need to buy this course ($74) or subscribe to an unlimited subscription ($27.99 per month).

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Taught by two quantum computing experts with decades of experience in the field
  • Unarguably one of the best introductory courses for quantum computing
  • Beginner-friendly due to its “low-math” approach
  • Easy-to-follow curriculum
  • Include high-quality transcripts and subtitles
  • Exceptional reading materials (some are with animations.)
  • Free auditing (limited time)

Cons

  • Do not drill deep into intermediate/advanced concepts
  • One of the instructors has a strong accent. Some learners may find it difficult to understand him correctly.

Advanced Courses

4. Quantum Computer Systems Design

This edX program from the University of Chicago will delve into the design principles of quantum computers. You will learn to use the IBM Qiskit software to write elementary quantum programs (in Python) and deploy them on the appropriate hardware.

Note: Unlike others, this program does not require knowledge of advanced mathematics. However, you should complete the prior program (#1 on this list) before enrolling.

Course Content

The program consists of three minor courses. In general, this program will introduce you to quantum systems research and fundamental concepts, including Bloch Sphere, Feynman Path Sum, quantum teleportation, no-cloning theorem, etc.

Subsequently, you will learn about medium-size algorithms and quantum processor microarchitecture and grasp how the software and hardware can work together.

Finally, you will understand how classical software techniques can be instrumental in improving quantum systems’ productivity and stability.

The university suggests spending 8-12 hours per week on the course, and you will complete it in three months.

Auditing the courses is again free. However, there are various assignments and labs in each course. I suggest opting for the verified track, which costs $540 and provides complete access to all learning resources.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Taught by four professors from the University of Chicago
  • Clear, informative explanations of concepts
  • Include various assignments and labs for students to gain hands-on experience
  • Easy-to-read text transcripts
  • Self-paced learning (An instructor-led option is also available for the second and third courses)
  • Free auditing

Cons

  • Courses use slightly outdated videos (recorded in Spring 2021).

5. Quantum Technology: Computing

This ultimate Micromasters program from Purdue University is unarguably the best option for those looking for an all-in-one quantum computing course.

You will learn all the concepts from the beginning and be able to analyze quantum computing architectures on your own upon program completion.

Course Content

This program consists of five following courses as follows:

1. Introduction to Quantum Science and Technology – This 17-week course will delve into the essence of quantum technologies. You will learn about quantum mechanics and how it is different from classical mechanics.

Subsequently, you will illustrate quantum phenomena mathematically, explore a wave function in quantum systems and interpret quantum signatures in the data.

At the end of the course, you will analyze the challenges surrounding this innovative technology, including quantum computing and communication.

2. Applied Quantum Computing I: Fundamentals – The second course will discuss how quantum mechanics can connect with information-processing models and introduce you to fundamental principles of quantum computing.

3. Applied Quantum Computing II: Hardware – The third course will shift the focus toward the hardware. You will perceive how current material platforms can handle quantum computing tasks.

In the second part, you will learn about three leading quantum material platforms: Superconducting, Atomic/Ion-traps, and Spin based, and all the specific challenges.

Later, you will grasp how qubits should be defined for each platform and how to manipulate qubits to form larger quantum systems.

4. Applied Quantum Computing III: Algorithm and Software – The fourth course will delve into quantum algorithms, including Shor’s algorithms. Subsequently, you will explore their applications in many industries, including chemistry and data science.

Towards the end of the course, you will learn to run these quantum algorithms on state-of-the-art software.

5. Quantum Detectors – The final course will discuss quantum sensors. Furthermore, you will learn about devices (magnetometers and interferometers) that can extract information from the environment precisely.

Besides its comprehensive curriculum, each course also has several learning resources, particularly hands-on assignments where you can experience how quantum devices function. This will prove highly beneficial in helping you gain a deep understanding of core principles.

Most students typically spend 7-9 hours per week on coursework, and they tend to complete the program in ten months.

Upon program completion with decent grades (B or higher), you can apply these seven credits towards Purdue’s online master’s degree (also available through edX).

Alternatively, you can use these credits toward RIT (Rochester Institute of Technology)’s Master of Science Degree. However, you need to apply and be accepted to the program.

Note: Since the program is instructor-led, you may not be able to enroll during certain parts of the year.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Unarguably one of the most informative online quantum computing courses at the moment
  • Comprehensive curriculum
  • Informative, in-depth lessons
  • Provide several hands-on assignments and labs for students to obtain practical experience
  • Include a final exam to test your skills
  • Free auditing
  • Provide seven academic credits upon program completion

Cons

  • Not always available
  • Far costlier than other alternatives
  • Video lessons are not bite-sized.

6. Quantum Machine Learning

Quantum computing and machine learning are two emerging developments in computer science that have the potential to reshape the world. In fact, quantum computing can even enhance machine learning and make artificial intelligence and automation more potent than ever.

This course by the University of Toronto is one of the very few online courses that offer insights into this subject. Hence, if you are interested in this state-of-the-art technology, it may be the best option available.

Note: Apart from the prerequisites of the advanced courses stated above, you should be familiar with Python, machine learning, and quantum physics.

Course Content

Below are some of the topics that you will learn in this course:

  • Quantum states fundamentals
  • Comparison between multiple quantum paradigms and implementations
  • Limitations of current quantum technologies
  • Deep dive into classical-quantum hybrid algorithms
  • Quantum machine learning protocols
  • Quantum Fourier Transformation, Quantum Phase Estimation, and Quantum Matrix
  • and many more

Besides the video lectures, there are numerous coding assignments in which you will implement quantum algorithms in Python. Hence, you will have significant hands-on experience after completing them.

Regarding the pace, you should spend 6-8 hours per week for two months. Auditing is also free, while the verified track costs only $49.

Note: Like the previous course, this one may not be available during certain parts of the year.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • One of the very few courses that provide insights into this topic
  • Taught by various guest lecturers who are prominent physicists and computer scientists
  • Include multiple coding assignments that allow you to experience the implementation of actual quantum algorithms
  • Free auditing
  • Inexpensive verified track

Cons

  • Not always available

Other Alternatives

The following quantum computing courses may be beneficial for beginners. However, they are not very informative, so I decided not to include them on the list.

Related Courses

Quantum Mechanics – Coming Soon

Pun Anansakunwat
Pun Anansakunwathttps://victorytale.com/about-victorytale/
Founder of Victory Tale, a multipotentialite who has a particular interest in technology. He loves to spend time testing new products and learning interesting topics to broaden his insights. After graduating from Columbia University in 2014, he makes a living by being a stock market investor, a private tutor, a writer of three published books, and finally a website owner.

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