Artificial Intelligence Evolving Around Teaching and Learning -Fahmida Mehreen
The world today evolves around technology. In every sphere of life, we are succumbed into technological facets. Starting from the time we wake up with the ringing of alarm clock until we do our household chores and office works, we are roaming around the peripheries of technology. Our children are exposed to technology largely with their learning and entertainment depending heavily upon it. In short, lifestyle and living are unimaginable today without technology.
With the evolvement of technology over centuries, we have reached an era where we got introduced with ‘artificial intelligence’ – an intelligence demonstrated by machines, which is unlike the intelligence shown by humans or animals. It is impacting how the users of the digital world interact with each other and work through the internet. The rapid growth and development of artificial intelligence will affect the socioeconomic structure in general, for better or for worse. Nonetheless, no matter how much we debate about the pros and cons of artificial intelligence, it is needless to say that artificial intelligence is developing speedily and is affecting our daily lives. It is working to make the internet an element of trust for the people. Thus, when an artificial intelligence system is being developed, factors such as transparency, bias, accountability, new uses of data, issues regarding safety and security, even the impact on eco-system are taken into consideration. At the same time, the development is facing challenges in securing data quality, data safety, and disruptive social and economic status.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming an integral part of our lives. Thus, it has entered the world of teaching and learning. Children and adults all tend to spend a large amount of time on laptops and tablets for the purpose of acquiring knowledge and to learn about things uncountable, courtesy to accessible and high-speed internet. While we keep saying that the extended period of screen time is adversely affecting children’s health and psychology, artificial intelligence is altering the education system and changing the way education will look in future. It is true that the physical presence of teachers and educators cannot be replaced by technology, yet the style of teaching is likely to change with advancement in AI. There are some jobs which will permanently become redundant for teachers, and they will be able to focus on other areas for better progress.
Different students have different requirements. Every person, child or adult, is unique. Their needs differ and calls for various solutions. Therefore, differentiation techniques in teaching have been a modern trend. Schools and colleges tend to adapt to this system to cater to the needs of individual students. However, for a teacher having to deal with a class of 30 to 40 students, this may not be possible all the time in the best manner. That is where artificial intelligence comes in. AI will be able to detect the particular need of each student and give a solution thereon. AI has already been tested and implemented in schools and other educational institutions to see how it works. It is expected that AI will fill in the gaps between teaching and learning, and teachers will be able to do more than ever before, aiming for the best outcomes for the students. Moreover, since today’s students will be working in a world with AI, it is important that they get introduced to it at their learning stage.
Various IT companies and businesses are working to develop intelligent instruction and digital platforms for AI to provide learning, testing and feedback to students from kindergarten level to college level. Till date, the idea of a customized curriculum package for students is not viable, but it is anticipated that AI will make it possible in the near future. Simultaneously, AI will open up learning platforms globally, and students in any part of the world, even speaking different languages, can access to global classrooms. This will also allow students to have access to learning materials at any time; they will not only be confined within class hours. This is already in practice to a large extent, with online courses and training programs that runs worldwide. Eventually, this will only magnify and become more open.
On a different note, teachers spend a lot of time in checking and giving feedback to students. At present, this work has been simplified to the level that multiple-choice questions can be checked automatically by the system following the preset answer keys. AI will soon make it possible to check written responses and give feedback based on the answers. The weaker sides of the students will be more apparent and help teachers to nurture them accordingly so that they can combat their weaknesses. Admission taking process and other tasks of such kind such as handling results and report cards will be much simpler and error-free. As AI takes over these administrative tasks of the teachers, they can manage to spend more time with the students to develop other fundamentals which machines cannot teach – one of the most important elements being ethics and values in students. Apart from learning the rudiments of maths and science, children should also learn life lessons for character building and grasping ideas, morals and principles.
Teachers will have wider access to students and shall be able to help them outside classrooms. There are many times when parents struggle to provide proper assistance to their children academically, which can be with homework or with test preparation. This brings about frustration in parents as well as students. Thanks to AI, tutoring and studying programs are becoming popular. As time progresses, it will be able to respond to the range to learning styles too.
There are many AI applications in the development stage including AI mentors for learners. Because of all the tiny and detailed elements in education, adoption of AI in education is slower, but the changes have begun and will continue. It is claimed by many researchers that AI will increase the level of education. Advantages such as greater opportunity to see and resolve weaknesses, better engagement with students and understanding their individual needs, effective curriculum design, and the prospect of finding a good teacher cannot be ignored when analyzing AI. On the contrary, the large-scale implementation of AI in the education system will require heavy investment in terms of infrastructure and training. Teachers and educators need to be well trained and well equipped to get the best out of AI. Without having proper knowledge as to how it can be managed, full utilization of AI will not come about. Also, a robust amount of data has to be dealt with to design an applicable AI system.
The education system has a lot of scopes to integrate artificial intelligence. Currently, there are some great solutions for children, adults, teachers, mentors and schools. Because of the ability to analyze a huge amount of data, AI has the potential to give one-stop solutions to teachers and students and enhance the process of teaching and learning. Now, it is just a matter of time before what seems like magic now becomes a reality.