Programming Languages

Probabilistic Programming (Proseminar)

The world is full of randomness and uncertainty. Modeling random processes helps us make better decisions, but it is not always intuitive how to work with these models. Probabilistic programming languages enable us to describe complicated probability models and obtain properties relevant for decision making through the power of modern computers. In this module, we learn the basics of probabilistic programming using the language WebPPL.


We work with the book Probabilistic Models of Cognition. We meet every week. Each meeting is about a chapter of the book. One of you will teach the chapter to us others and explain how to solve the chapter’s exercises during the meeting. Active participation in the discussion is expected. Until the end of the semester you will hand in a report on the topic you presented, based on the book chapter but also on additional material. Your grade will be based on the presentation of the book chapter and the report you handed in, weighted equally.

  • Link to Alma: Alma

First Meeting

Our first meeting is on April 20 at 5pm (c.t.) online:


To participate in this course, send an email containing your name, Matrikelnummer and Studiengang to Philipp Schuster.


If you want to get an impression of what probabilistic programming is you can check out Making Money Using Math by Erik Meijer.



Knowledge in probability theory is helpful but not required.