AI and Education

AI is a disruptive technology. It will affect several areas of our life. It is going to shape the future of education too. It is all set to disrupt education. It is fast becoming a popular tool among teachers and children. AI as a technology lends itself to any age group making it an exciting evolving technology. AI has simplified several things linked with education. Administration has become easy with AI tools. Teachers can prepare their classroom presentations better with AI. Students can be engaged in learning in the classroom and at home with AI. AI can create smart classrooms and smart buildings that can be remotely controlled. AI can facilitate experiential learning with virtual reality making learning interesting and safe. Yet it is not easy to determine if AI is a blessing or curse in the field of education. Generative AI can generate text and images. We are afraid that students might use these technologies to cheat in the classroom. This may problematize, ‘what is cheating and what is learning?’

Thus, AI in education is raising important questions. ‘The question ‘What is learning?’ has come to haunt us when AI generates content of education. We indeed have a challenge to reimagine education. Those who want the status quo want us to use AI technology to detect AI products in the classroom. This means education is hit by a trust deficit. We are overwhelmed with the fear that seem to ask: How are we to prevent high tech cheating? We seem to be in a quandary. If we suspect all that student learning out-puts in the classroom, it goes against our responsibility to build trust, independence and passion for learning. AI is efficient and productive. It cuts costs and is becoming popular. It will not go away. Hence, while AI takes our society by storm, we are facing problem of academic integrity in the field of education. Perhaps, we have the challenge to rethink and value human intelligence and learning.

AI copy our intelligence and our ability to learn and can out smart us. Perhaps, there is more to human intelligence and learning. We seem to give high value to processing of information, memorization of procedures and the recall effects. But we see that AI excels and outsmart us in these matters. Maybe we have to redefine and revalue human intelligence. Perhaps, we have to move to problem solving and discovery or heuristic pedagogies for active learning. We may have to make learning personal by bringing meaning in the learning space. We may have to ask: What this learning outcome means to ‘you’? What do ‘you’ think it will mean to others/ other communities? Why is it relevant to anyone? Next, we have the challenge to get the students to make connections to the real world. Get the students to engage with their feelings, awareness, empathy as they put themselves in the context of what they have learned. Next, we have to challenge our students to apply what they have learnt to a new situations. Get them think outside the box. Thus, can see we have the challenge to change the way we conduct teaching-learning-evaluation in our classrooms.

By re-imaging education, we make our students future ready. Humans have incredible capacity of learning and creativity. Education has this challenge to tap into these abilities. Otherwise, as AI grows, it will replace or displace humans from their jobs. We are heading to a post-labor economy. Education as of now might hasten it faster than it will come. This is why the way we educate has to change. AI can assist us to reach a new level in the evolution of education. If we can evolve our education to this new level, we will have the satisfaction to say to our student: ‘We helped you to live with AI around you.’ AI is not going to go. Our society will be AI driven. If we bring critical changes in education, we will enable students to detects flaws, biases in the outputs of AI and understand and respond to situations, when AI becomes propaganda tools in the hands of the powerful. We indeed, have to walk a tight rope in the field of education. Education has the challenge to integrate discovery-reflection-action in Education.

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Hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue.

- Fr Victor Ferrao