COMP24412: Symbolic Artificial Intelligence

This course is being delived by Giles Reger, Martin Riener, and Andre Freitas. Please see the School syllabus page for other information.

Aims and objectives

The aim of this course is to provide the conceptual and practical (systems building) foundations for knowledge representation and reasoning in Artificial Intelligence.

A student completing this course unit should be able to:


Lecture and Lab notes and materials will be available from here. As per School policy, we will not be providing hard copies of notes.

The following table is the main reference for what is going on in the course and will be updated frequently throughout the course as further details are given.

The suggested reading will be mainly taken from Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach (Third Edition) referenced as AIAMA. It should be noted that this is suggested only and not examinable (only lectured material is examinable).

week Lectures Suggested Reading Labs Quiz
1 Introduction Chapter 1 of AIAMA (mainly 1.1)
Modelling in Datalog Sections 8.1 and 8.2 of AIAMA (although this is more detail than needed)
2 Reasoning in Datalog Section 9.3 of AIAMA (although relies on some previous sections)
Introducing Prolog
3 More Prolog, Prolog rules from lecture
Introduction to Prolog
Even More Prolog
4 Revising First-Order Logic

Models and Resolution
5 Translation to Clausal Form. Vampire website. Examples.
More Prolog
Saturation-Based Proof Search
6 Making it Work

Beyond (and Beneath) FOL
7 Introduction to the Second Part
First-Order Reasoning Exercise 2 Marking Scheme

Knowledge Representation
(Slides 1-49)
8 Description Logics & Ontologies
(Slides 50-79)

Frames & Conceptual Graphs
9 Introduction to ILP and FOIL

KR & ILP Lab

ILP Getting Deeper
10 Semantic Parsing

Natural Language Inference

11 Neuro-Symbolic Models

Syntactic & Semantic Parsing
12 Mock Questions (Part 1) Mock Marking Scheme (Part 1) Mock Questions (Part 2)

Revision Part 1

Revision Part 2


  • Stuart Russell and Peter Norvig, Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach, Global Edition, 2016.
  • Patrick Blackburn, Johan Bos and Kristina Striegnitz: Learn Prolog Now!, College Publications, 2006.
  • Sebastian Loebner, Understanding Semantics, Second Edition, 2013.
  • Kate Kearns, Semantics (Palgrave Modern Linguistics), 2011
  • Exams

    Please note that the course has changed considerably this year and previous exams should be treated with care. Further guidance will be added here later.

    Check out the following sites: