The pandemic accelerated the growth of technologies in education, as schools continue to search for more ways to bring the learning experience online. Research into generative AI technology can be traced back to the 1960s, but it’s only since the release of ChatGPT in November 2022 that AI has really taken hold in our daily lives.
Generative AI has already proved to have a range of benefits for a variety of industries, including manufacturing, marketing, software development, and more. Naturally, the education industry is cautious about the use of this technology.
However, it’s important to realise that AI is likely to have a place in the classrooms of the future. Just what that looks like is still uncertain and will depend on how schools, and the industry as a whole, adopt the tech.
We’re just beginning to find new ways to use generative AI in the education sector, and teachers, leaders and students around the globe continue to experiment. The key is to find safe ways to use these tools, while also reaping their benefits. Here are just a few ways that generative AI can be used to enhance the learning and teaching experience.
- Lesson plans and course structure
- Updating learning materials
- Generating feedback
- Revision and practice questions
- EdTech for International and Independent schools
Lesson plans and course structure
One of the primary ways AI is benefiting a range of industries is by handling the most time consuming and repetitive tasks. Ultimately, humans take longer to collate information. AI tools were made to reduce the leg work and provide results.
The same can be said about the potential of AI for teachers. When we think of AI in the education industry, we tend to think of students using AI tools to cheat for assignments. However, its uses extend far beyond that.
Generative AI provides the freedom to generate any kind of content you might need. For software developers, that might be code. For teachers, this could be lesson plans on specific subjects, or even full course structures. Planning lessons and courses is one of the most time-consuming tasks as a teacher. This is even more true for those that teach multiple sets, year groups, or subjects. They also need continual updating according to shifts in curriculums and new resources.
There are several AI tools, paid and free, available right now for your teachers. You can find a comprehensive list here.
Remove the repetitive and manual nature of building course and lesson structures from your teacher’s to-do list and let them focus on what they do best; teaching.
Each year group and set of students have a different set of requirements and capabilities. For example, you would teach RE (Religious Education) very differently to 6-year-olds, compared to 16-year-olds. However, your teachers are experts in their field, so it’s not always easy to turn some of the most complex problems into something that is palatable for the classroom.
Generative AI tools like ChatGPT, or those now being built into other software, can harness huge amounts of data to find ways to translate information into more manageable formats. You can specify an age group and concept, and ask the technology to create explanations based on those parameters.
Sometimes, it can be difficult to simplify something that we understand well. However, you need to cater to a range of abilities as a teacher, and ChatGPT can simplify this process.
Updating learning materials
With the amount of data we now have at our fingertips, information almost becomes out of date the moment we read it. Online resources are constantly updated, and we make new advances every day.
However, keeping learning resources up to date isn’t necessarily that simple. It is extremely time-consuming to comb through all learning materials on a regular basis to ensure there are no inaccuracies or out-of-date information. Once identified, it takes even more time to update those materials.
This is just another area where generative AI tools can help to boost time management and efficiency. Additionally, this isn’t just applicable to text resources. Generative AI can update images, and there are even tools being developed that can enhance video resources. The latest developments have seen tools integrated into existing video or photo editing apps, off the back of ChatGPT and other similar technology.
This software can seamlessly update and improve the quality of images and text so that you can provide students with improved learning materials, without losing staff efficiency.
Some teaching staff have recently been trialing the effectiveness of generative AI as a feedback tool. The tool assesses student assignments or submissions, and provides useful feedback on a range of criteria, including punctuation, spelling, grammar, sentence and paragraph structure, tone, and more.
Writing reports and assessment feedback is one of the most time-consuming tasks for teachers, as each student requires tailored support. However, there are areas where an automated approach would be a considerable benefit.
ChatGPT, or similar software, can identify the positive areas and the problem areas within a piece of content. This simply provides the data that a teacher needs to make their assessment of a student’s assignment. This ensures that students are still receiving the same level of feedback, but reduces the time spent for teaching or assessment staff.
Revision and practice questions
While the idea of students using generative AI technology is a hot discussion topic right now, it’s important to recognise that AI is here to stay. Preventing students from using it is likely to become even more challenging - and might even hinder their development.
There are ways that students can implement AI tools into their learning, without losing originality and critical thinking. Generative AI can do more than just write essays. It harnesses the power of AI and machine learning, and the hordes of data accessible, to generate any kind of content a user might need.
One example of a great way that students can use AI in their education is in the generation of practice questions or revision resources. Generative AI tools are effectively an expert in every subject. Provide specific parameters and it can suggest practice questions for different levels of understanding, generate full learning resources according to the skillset or age group, and even build a revision plan.
This is just one way that generative AI can help to support students in their education. The key to the successful implementation of AI in a learning environment like this is education on its benefits and pitfalls, and finding ways that software like this can be used in an ethical manner.
EdTech for International and Independent schools
The iSAMS MIS and range of additional software solutions were created with Independent and International schools in mind. We understand the demands that you have from your technology and are keen to continue developing our systems in order to meet those expectations.
Our MIS seamlessly integrates with our additional solutions, including iFinance, Central, HR, Admissions, Apps, and more, providing you with a customisable and powerful school management system.
If you’d like to learn more about how iSAMS can support your school’s continued development, you can watch a full MIS demo below.
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