Making Education Smarter With Artificial Intelligence

AI is one of the disruptive techniques which has re-modelled the ‘work hard’ philosophy to ‘work smart’ philosophy.

Artificial Intelligence no longer lives in the realm of fiction movies rather it has slowly crept its way into our education system and is transforming the teaching-learning pedagogies across the globe. Multiple breakthrough AI technologies have been developed for image identification, speech recognition, text to speech, chatbot engines and has made significant contributions to a wide range of education solutions. Definitely, we are not at a point where robots are taking classes but at a point where AI has started to customize the learning experience and make it more personalized. AI is utilized by universities the world over in increasing admissions and student retention.  AI-powered student performance progress tracking for identification of knowledge gaps and appropriate follow up, still in nascent stages, has the potential to transform the teaching-learning experience, ensuring satisfaction for all stakeholders. In the aftermath of the Covid-19 outbreak, AI-enabled exam proctoring tools were used to ensure the smooth conduct of examinations globally, rescuing the education system and the future prospects of students everywhere. 

AI is one of the disruptive techniques which has re-modelled the ‘work hard’ philosophy to ‘work smart’ philosophy. It holds the promise of significant educational benefits, including individualized learning tailored to student preferences, the ability to adjust the speed, control iterations and increase the understanding of the subject and finally AI-based educational games to increase student engagement. Machine learning, neural networks and other AI approaches can be used to create evaluation instruments that are more promising and diagnostic than traditional examinations. AI has also come to the rescue of students with special needs with improved voice recognition, text to speech, and text modification. Augmented and virtual reality when combined with AI has taken us towards the next level of imagination and creativity. With the new initiative of the government for engineering degrees in various regional languages, AI and NLP would come as a stepping stone towards the path of creativity and innovations. Thus, AI is supporting higher education institutions in their quest for innovations with better student engagement, more fundings, and a faster pace.

AI has come as an aid to teachers and students in varied ways where it has augmented human intelligence rather than replacing it. Teachers can exploit AI tools to trace the progress of their students in real-time thus helping them to understand and analyse the problem in the initial stages only. AI smart analytics identifies the topics on which the majority of students grappled and thus provides the teachers with recommendations for the topics that need reiterations for better understanding and learning. AI would help eliminate repetitive and mundane tasks like examination, evaluations, responding to the same set of queries etc thus saving the time of the faculty for productive tasks. So, it can be said that - What humans do not want to do AI would do. 

Covid 19 came in as a massive disruptor that not only changed the way we work and live but also augmented this change faster than we could ever imagine. It has made technology infiltrate our lives and the process is irrevocable. In fact, Covid-19 has given a crash course to all in terms of digital aspects of education. But yes, we are now better prepared to embrace the new digital era of education with AI as its important ingredient. We now know the shortcomings that we have and can work on them. India, being a developing nation, is still at its infancy in creating the desired infrastructure in the field, since AI technologies are hungry for computation power and high-speed connectivity. Realizing the digital needs, the government has created the National Educational Technology Forum to provide direction, support, investment, and advice to institutions in order to enhance their technological capacity. Universities must build next-generation campus infrastructure to meet the needs of today's tech-savvy students and embrace modern applications that establish a connected infrastructure and enable intuitive experiences for all stakeholders.

The future of AI is miraculous. With a device in every hand, with the amount of time we spend on the systems, all this would definitely correspond to creating clones of us from the data. The classrooms would be global classrooms open to all, including those from varied backgrounds, speaking different languages or having visual or hearing impairments. The future of AI would be amazing when you would have someone, maybe your personal teacher or your personal friend, around you who would never say 'No' even at the midnight.

Though AI is still in its infancy, akin to human evolution it would carve its own growth path with infinite possibilities. So far 'We have only scratched the surface of what’s possible.'

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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