AI in Education: An Overview
Artificial Intelligence (AI) presents both challenges and opportunities in the realm of education. At present, AI is surrounded by considerable hype, especially with the emergence of large generative language models like ChatGPT and DALL-E. While these advancements are rapid, a key concern is the current lack of transparency and the intricate nature of AI software. If educators and institutions can’t comprehend how AI operates, controlling and managing it becomes a challenge. For meaningful integration in education, it’s vital to understand the software’s assumptions, biases, and constraints.
Artificial intelligence, as defined by McCarthy in 1956, is the capacity for machines to mimic human intelligence aspects. This includes learning, language usage, and problem-solving. Later definitions emphasize intelligent computer systems or agents possessing human-like features, such as understanding human language.
There are three primary requirements that differentiate ‘modern’ AI from other computing applications: access to vast data, immense computational power, and relevant algorithms for data analysis.
AI’s application in education spans across institutional, student support, and instructional spheres. While its role in institutional and student support is crucial, this overview emphasizes AI’s pedagogical implications and its potential as a medium in teaching.
The objectives for integrating AI in teaching vary. One perspective views AI as a means to enhance system efficiency by substituting human labor with AI, possibly targeting educators due to their significant cost in the educational system. Another perspective advocates for AI’s role in augmenting teaching effectiveness, where AI supports teachers in achieving better learning outcomes.
The promise of AI in education is vast, from intelligent tutoring systems offering adaptive feedback to automated grading and personalized learning experiences. Some applications, like ChatGPT, even redefine the landscape of instructional tools available for educators.
However, for AI to truly benefit education, it should aid in cultivating skills that aren’t easily replicable by machines and should be employed ethically and responsibly.
Source: Bates, A. W. (Tony). (2022, August 18). 9.4 Artificial intelligence. Tony Bates Associates Ltd.