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Do or Die?
The invisible cost of resisting AI in higher education
There’s been a lot of discussion in recent months about the risks associated with the rise of generative AI for higher education.
Much of the conversation has centred around the threat that tools like ChatGPT - which can generate essays and other text-based assessments in seconds - pose to academic integrity. More recently, others have started to explore more subtle risks of AI in the classroom, including issues and equity and the impact on the teacher-student relationship.
Much less work has been done on exploring the negative consequences that might result from not embracing AI in education.
Notwithstanding its risks, this week, I’ve been exploring the potential risks surrounding banning AI in higher education for an article commissioned by the London School of Economics.
In the article, I open up discussion around the risks of AI-erasure and make a case for adopting AI both for our students and our future relevance and value as an institution.
I present a vision for a future where AI is effectively and ethically utilised in academia, leading to significant improvements in both student and institutional outcomes.
Here’s the TL;DR:
AI, particularly ChatGPT, presents a double-edged sword for higher education; while it undermines the integrity of existing academic systems of assessments, it also offers an opportunity to rethink how we define learning and assessment for the better.
Current responses to the challenges raised by AI, including returning to in-classroom exams and investing in AI detection technologies, are impractical and fail to address the root cause of the problem: a system in which learning and assessment centre around the ability to recall and reframe information.
Rather than resisting AI, universities should leverage it to innovate pedagogies, deliver authentic assessment, enhance learning outcomes, and better equip students for a technology-driven future.
Embracing AI in the higher education sector prepares students for the increasingly technology-driven job market and promotes more active, participatory learning experiences which we know lead to better outcomes for both students and employers.
With the rising popularity of alternative education routes such as bootcamps and apprenticeships, it's crucial for traditional higher education to engage positively with AI in order to maintain its competitiveness and relevance.
If you want to learn more about how to embrace AI and try it for yourself, my AI-Powered Learning Science Bootcamp might be for you! The next cohort kicks off in August.