Udacity AWS Machine Learning NanoDegree Scholarship

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We will try and persist some useful answers for you here

Frequently Asked Questions[edit]


What is the scholarship about?[edit]

How do I get started?[edit]

How do I get the scholarship?[edit]

You need to complete the foundations course and do the final assessment. Only your result from the final assessment will be then taken into account. It has to be above 90% to have a chance for the scholarship. If there are more students at 90%+, a random 425 will be selected. Time of completion does not matter as long as it is before the phase one ends on the 11th of October.


What is Slack?[edit]

  • It is a communication place used by AWS DeepRacer Community
  • It is where you can get help on AWS DeepRacer, AWS DeepLens, AWS DeepComposer
  • Please, be mindful where you're writing your message - check if it is the right place

AWS Services[edit]

What is DeepRacer?[edit]

What is DeepLens?[edit]

What is DeepComposer?[edit]

AWS Account[edit]

Can I do the course without an AWS account?[edit]

No, you cannot. The course (both foundations and the NanoDegree) is focused on using AWS for Machine Learning. You cannot learn and practice using AWS services without having an AWS account.

Can I use AWS Educate account?[edit]

Yes you can. If you have sufficient credits and access to required services, you can.

How much does it cost to complete the course?[edit]

Check out the orientation video: mandatory exercises can be completed within Free Tier allowance. Some exercises are optional.

Can I create an AWS account without a credit card?[edit]

No, you cannot. The account you are creating is exactly the same account that big businesses create when they start their AWS Cloud adventure, and has the same capabilities and rules. This means that you can run anything that's allowed to run, and you have to pay for things you run. This also means that you are subject to the same billing mechanisms and the rule is that AWS let you run stuff as soon as they can prove they can charge you for it.

What happens when you provide a card: $1 is taken from your account to check that this is a card that works (so empty card won't cut it). Then that $1 is returned.

What happens when you have the account: billing mechanism gathers information on your usage of services and after the month ends, within three days or so you will get an invoice on your email. It might be $0, but it will come. If you don't control your spendings, it may be more than $0 and that might give you a bit of a headache.

How does billing work: I don't exactly know. It gathers the information to be eventually consistent at the end of the month. This means that you don't see billing changes real time. I think it is updated around midnight UTC every day, but not all Free Tier credits appear to be applied then so you might be confused. It's worth checking it every day just to get used to it, and perhaps apply some controls and tools for extra visibility if you are leaking costs. Leaving some storage used won't cost an insane amount, Leaving a SageMaker Notebook running might cost you about $30 a month, if I remember correctly. DeepRacer training and evaluation does not report on your usage of the free 10 hours real time, you need to track it, after that it's $3.50 for every hour (community has cheaper solutions). There are more expensive services (not part of this course).

How to control the costs:

  • When you're told to clean up after an exercise, do it.
  • Learn what AWS Billing Dashboard is, use it regularly
  • Read This article on how to work with Free Tier
  • Learn what AWS Cost Explorer is, enable it, see daily costs in graphs per service

Is Free Tier Free?[edit]

No it is not. Free Tier is a limited-time offer for new starters which includes certain allowances for selected services. They differ from service to service.

For the Udacity Scholarship the mandatory exercises have been planned to ensure you can do them within Free Tier allowance, but you need to ensure you clean up the resources to avoid incurring costs when the month ends.

Read This article on how to work with Free Tier