Technology has always played a significant role in education, and it saw an increasing significance after the advent of the pandemic. Increasingly, Artificial Intelligence is being used in education to address some of the biggest challenges of the day, innovate teaching practices, and ultimately accelerate the advancement of education for all. For understanding, we can broadly classify discussions around AI and education into three groups: learning with AI (e.g., using AI-powered tools in classrooms), learning about AI (its technologies and techniques), and preparing for AI (enabling citizens to understand the impacts of AI on their lives). This article explains how AI has impacted the education sector by making learning and teaching easier for students and educators alike.
Enabling education across geographies and languages
Maintaining the standardized quality of education across geographies and to the last mile is always a challenge. However, AI technologies have the potential to bridge the gap between students, teachers, peers, and educational administrators in a significant way. Teachers and students can communicate across cultures and overcome language barriers with the help of AI applications, which offer advanced real-time language translation capabilities. Microsoft Translator for Education is one such tool that makes this possible. Consequently, different cultures can share and collaborate on ideas and concepts, transforming education. With 5G’s prominence and internet penetration increasing, the power of AI will surge to enable things like immersive AI and VR-supported learning, which will be a leap forward.
Enabling the specially-abled learners to access the same content
Several AI-based assistive technologies use advanced speech synthesis to improve the learning outcomes of specially-abled learners. Learning processes can integrate automated image descriptions to assist visually impaired individuals. As an efficient approach, AI-based systems explain the content in the simplest possible way, and then the educators refine the content or the image description.
Furthermore, the quality of synthetic speech has improved significantly and will continue to do so. AI can interpret the speech of the educators in live classes or recorded sessions to convert it into subtitles which can be consumed by learners with hearing impairment. The impact of AI innovations transcends to offline learning ecosystems. Earlier this year, researchers at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne created a nerve-stimulation device controlled by a touchscreen tablet which empowered earlier paralyzed patients to walk, cycle, and even swim in community settings outside of the clinic. These advancements would make sports education inclusive too.
Personalization at scale
Personalization is one of the biggest strengths of AI-powered online education. With a personalized learning experience, every learner enjoys a unique educational approach tailored to their strengths and weaknesses. Through AI, learners get learning paths based on their level of knowledge and speed of learning, as well as their desired goals to maximize their learning potential. AI is also used to analyze assessment histories to prevent churn or determine what exercises would be appropriate for a student’s stage of learning. Duolingo, a popular learning application, uses AI in almost every aspect of its tool, from presenting exercises to its learners to sending notifications to keep them engaged.
Task automation for educators
Due to the growing complexity and administrative burdens associated with learner needs, teachers have to work longer hours. Even when teaching assistants share the workload, grading homework and tests for lectures can be tedious work in academia. Using AI in schools and virtual classrooms allows technology to take care of most value-added tasks. Aside from creating tailored teaching processes, AI software systems can grade tests, organize research pacers, oversee proctoring, prepare notes, and perform plagiarism checks online. On DPhi learners from 150+ countries learn practical data science skills for free with the help of such AI-powered assessment tools and dashboards for students, academic institutions, and corporate L&D teams alike.
Data-Driven Monitoring, Evaluation, and Research
Course creators can use AI to capture and project learner engagement statistics, performance statistics, and course feedback. It is possible to evaluate the outcome of the coursework better and see what changes positively impact the learners. While implementing any learning initiative, comprehensive dashboards can provide insights to indicate learners’ interest areas, areas of coursework improvement, return on investment, and much more. Businesses can develop a skills profile for their organizations, and schools can understand where additional faculty education might be beneficial. Through AI-powered insights, institutions can close the gaps critical for the learning program’s success and translate data into actionable strategies.
Doubt resolution through conversational AI
Learners often stumble upon doubts. Images of handwritten work or texts can be analyzed using deep learning to provide contextual information related to the text or diagrams. With increasing textual data and images, these machine learning models are expected to improve over time. As a result, most queries can be resolved automatically without human intervention. Popular Indian products such as Doubtnut and DoubtBuddy focus on providing such doubt resolution ecosystems with the help of these AI-powered technologies. Furthermore, AI can better solve the doubts of students by recommending the most appropriate sequence of homework or exercises to strengthen their weak areas. Eventually, the learning process speeds up, and doubt resolution remains personalized even at scale.
It is evident that AI has the potential to augment the capabilities of educators and institutions significantly. The best results in education will be achieved by combining the strengths of AI and human abilities. A key challenge in implementing AI is ensuring oversight of data usage and equitable access to infrastructure worldwide. Several important decisions need to be made about data ownership and how to use data transparently and ethically. Although AI offers many exciting developments, we are still in the early stages of its use. With time more innovations will be seen in the domain, and it will be a continuous research process to evaluate their effectiveness.