7 Ways Artificial Intelligence can redefine the educational experience

September 5, 2016

We live in a world which is running on Artificial Intelligence. Today virtually every field has benefited from advancements in Artificial Intelligence from Facebook suggesting us friends to computer trading our stocks and even the cars that park themselves. One place where artificial intelligence is poised to make big changes is education. While we may not see humanoid robots teaching in classrooms but there are AI tools that help teachers and students make the most from their learning experience. These tools shape and redefine the educational experience of the future.

International Artificial Intelligence in Education Society (AIED) hosts annual conference to bring forward the recent research and support AI throughout the international community. The next conference is planned to be held in Philippines in the month of June 2017. EdTech companies trying to make a mark in the field of AI are looking forward to the conference to understand the evolving role of AI in education. Here are a few ways AI can have an impact:

1. Education platforms adapted to student needs

One of the key ways AI can impact education is through application of higher levels of individualized learning. Adaptive learning programs are already a step forward in the direction emphasizing on certain topics and repeating what student haven’t mastered. AI could offer a machine-assisted solution to help students at different knowledge levels learn together in one class.

2. Teachers as facilitators

No educationist has ever doubted the importance of teacher in the educational system but the role that they play has evolved with time. In an AI landscape, while technology takes up roles like grading, serving as a place for students to ask questions and find information, teachers can act as facilitators supplementing AI lessons and providing human interaction and hands on experience for students.

3. Taking away the load of grading from teachers

Most teachers feel that a significant amount of their time goes into grading which can be used otherwise in better ways. While AI may not completely replace manual grading, it’s getting pretty close. It’s now possible for assessment platforms to auto-grade nearly all types of assessment items, even the subjective ones in near future allowing teachers to focus more on student interaction and development. For schools and district using assessment solutions developed by Magic have been able to share that load from teachers by providing a wide variety of assessment item types. Over 200,000 students are tested every year on Magic’s platforms.

4. Identifying the scope of improvement in curriculum

Teachers may not sometimes be aware of certain gaps in educational material leaving students confused about a certain concept. AI is capable of solving this problem. Imagine a scenario where a large number of students are found to submit wrong answers in response to an assignment, an AI driven system sends alerts to teacher and gives future students a customized message with hints. These kind of systems help fill the gaps in explanation that can occur in course material.

 5. Continuous feedback for learners and facilitators

Intelligent systems today are not just helping teachers to create courses customized to student needs but also provide feedback about the success of the course material. These systems are capable of generating student progress reports and map them to time spent by students on a task or an assignment. These could be valuable insights for teachers to perform required remediation either in the learning process or learning material.

6. Making trial and error learning less intimidating

Trial and error is a critical part of learning process but for many students , the idea of failing in this process can be daunting. AI has a role to play here by providing a judgement free environment to experiment and learn with AI tutors playing the role of a learning companion rather than an authority.

7. AI driven recommendation engines to help students find the best school and program

Data powered by AI can change the way schools interact with their current and prospective students. Intelligent recommendation engines help students find the most suitable school or program based for their capabilities and interests. AI is not just helping students find the best fit but also helping them going through a guided training that can ease their transition between college and high school.

With EdTech players focusing their energies in this direction, AI has  the potential to radically change just about everything in the teaching-learning landscape.