Politecnico di Torino
Politecnico di Torino
Politecnico di Torino
Academic Year 2016/17
Data spaces
Master of science-level of the Bologna process in Mathematical Engineering - Torino
Master of science-level of the Bologna process in Computer Engineering - Torino
Teacher Status SSD Les Ex Lab Tut Years teaching
Vaccarino Francesco ORARIO RICEVIMENTO A2 MAT/03 40 20 0 0 3
SSD CFU Activities Area context
B - Caratterizzanti
C - Affini o integrative
Discipline matematiche, fisiche e informatiche
Attività formative affini o integrative
Subject fundamentals
The main objective of this course is to provide the students with solid mathematical bases of the major techniques used in supervised and unsupervised statistical (machine) learning.
Expected learning outcomes
- Knowledge and understanding of the main learning techniques (detailed knowledge of the mathematics behind the most popular learning techniques; be acquainted of the limitations of the various techniques; awareness of the structural problem as e.r. the curse of dimensionality)

- Practical application of the acquired knowledge (ability to identify the applicability domain of the various techniques with respect of the nature of data; ability to extract information form real and simulated data by applying the learned techniques via software application or development).
Prerequisites / Assumed knowledge
The students are assumed to know the topics covered by standard courses in mathematics given in the Bs.D. in Engineering. Furthermore, a knowledge in basic probability and statistics is required: pdf, normal, expectation, mean, variance – covariance. SVD will be explained along the course.
Metric and topological spaces. Curse of dimensionality; The Law of Large Numbers; the Geometry of High Dimensions: properties of the Unit Ball; Generating Points Uniformly at Random from a Ball; Gaussians in High Dimension; Random Projection and Johnson-Lindenstrauss Lemma.

What Is Statistical Learning? Why Estimate f? How Do We Estimate f? The Trade-Off Between Prediction Accuracy and Model Interpretability. Supervised Versus Unsupervised Learning. Regression Versus Classification Problems. Assessing Model Accuracy. Measuring the Quality of Fit. The Bias-Variance Trade-Off.

Simple Linear Regression. Multiple Linear Regression.

An Overview of Classification. Logistic Regression. Multiple Logistic Regression. Logistic Regression for >2 Response Classes. Linear Discriminant Analysis. Quadratic Discriminant Analysis. Comparison of Classification Methods. K-Nearest Neighbours.

Cross-Validation. Leave-One-Out Cross-Validation. k-Fold Cross-Validation. Cross-Validation on Classification Problems. The Bootstrap.

The Basics of Decision Trees. Regression Trees. Classification Trees. Advantages and Disadvantages of Trees. Bagging, Random Forests, Boosting.

SUPPORT VECTOR MACHINES. Classification Using a Separating Hyperplane. The Maximal Margin Classifier. Construction of the Maximal Margin Classifier. The Non-separable Case. Support Vector Classifiers. Support Vector Machines. SVMs with More than Two Classes. OVO and OVA. Relationship to Logistic Regression. Kernel Methods.

UNSUPERVISED LEARNING. SVD. Principal Components Analysis. Clustering. K-means clustering. Hierarchical Clustering
Delivery modes
Lessons, exercise classes and laboratory sessions will be given.
Texts, readings, handouts and other learning resources
An Introduction to Statistical Learning 
with Applications in R 
Gareth James, Daniela Witten, Trevor Hastie and Robert Tibshirani 


freely available at

Assessment and grading criteria
The goal of the exam is to test the knowledge of the candidate about the topics included in the official program and to test their skills in analysing data using the methods explained in the course.

The exam consists in two parts: first the candidate will write a technical relation "tesina" on the analysis of a data set performed by using the methods taught in the course. This will be software independent i.e. one can use Orange, R, Matlab, Rapidminer, Python, C++ etc. according to their knowledge or willingness.
Once the "tesina" is approved by the professor, then the student is allowed to present it in an oral exam (about 20.min) during which the professor will also ask questions on the theoretical aspects of the methods used in the tesina.

Sample work from the previous years will be provided on the website.

Programma definitivo per l'A.A.2017/18

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