Artificial Intelligence in Education:
Promises and Implications for Teaching and Learning
Copyright © 2019 by Center for Curriculum Redesign
All rights reserved.
“…a must read for educators and all stakeholders interested the future of education which will be impacted – and more than likely transformed – by AI…By staying rooted in the science of learning, the authors provide a critical lens on both the potential benefits and risks of AI without hyping the technology.”
—Jim Flanagan, Chief Operating and Strategy Officer,
The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE)
“The landscape for education has been rapidly changing in the last years: demographic changes affecting the makeup of families, multiple school options available to children, wealth disparities, the global economy demanding new skills from workers, and continued breakthroughs in technology are some of the factors impacting education. Given these changes, how can schools continue to prepare students for the future? In a world where information is readily available online, how can schools continue to be relevant? The emergence of Artificial Intelligence (AI) has exacerbated the need to have these conversations. Its impact on education and the multiple possibilities that it offers are putting pressure on educational leaders to reformulate the school curriculum and the channels to deliver it.
The book Artificial Intelligence in Education: Promises and Implications for Teaching and Learning by the Center for Curriculum Redesign immerses the reader in a discussion on what to teach students in the era of AI and examines how AI is already demanding much needed updates to the school curriculum, including modernizing its content, focusing on core concepts, and embedding interdisciplinary themes and competencies with the end goal of making learning more enjoyable and useful in students’ lives. The second part of the book dives into the history of AI in education, its techniques and applications –including the way AI can help teachers be more effective, and finishes on a reflection about the social aspects of AI. This book is a must-read for educators and policy-makers who want to prepare schools to face the uncertainties of the future and keep them relevant.
—Amada Torres, VP, Studies, Insights, and Research,
National Association of Independent School (NAIS)
“The rapid advances in technology in recent decades have already brought about substantial changes in education, opening up new opportunities to teach and learn anywhere anytime and providing new tools and methods to improve learning outcomes and support innovative teaching and learning.
Research into artificial intelligence and machine learning in education goes back to the late 1970s. Artificial intelligence methods were generally employed in two ways: to design and facilitate interactive learning environments that would support learning by doing, and to design and implement tutoring systems by adapting instructions with respect to the students’ knowledge state.
But this is just the beginning. As Artificial Intelligence in Education shows, AI is increasingly used in education and learning contexts. The collision of three areas – data, computation and education – is set to have far-reaching consequences, raising fundamental questions about the nature of education: what is taught and how it is taught.
Artificial Intelligence in Education is an important, if at times disturbing, contribution to the debate on AI and provides a detailed analysis on how it may affect the way teachers and students engage in education. The book describes how artificial intelligence may impact on curriculum design, on the individualisation of learning, and on assessment, offering some tantalising glimpses into the future (the end of exams, your very own lifelong learning companion) while not falling victim to tech-hype. The enormous ethical, technical and pedagogical challenges ahead are spelt out, and there is a real risk that the rapid advances in artificial intelligence products and services will outstrip education systems’ capacity to understand, manage and integrate them appropriately.
As the book concludes: “We can either leave it to others (the computer scientists, AI engineers and big tech companies) to decide how artificial intelligence in education unfolds, or we can engage in productive dialogue.”
I commend this book to anyone concerned with the future of education in a digital world.”
—Marc Durando, Executive Director,
Praise for Artificial Intelligence in Education
From A.I., EdTech, and Education Thought Leaders
“This book provides a benchmark for understanding the impact of AI on the goals and methods of education in the 21st century.”
—Henry Kautz, founding director, Goergen Institute for Data Science; past-president, Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI)
“AI is changing the knowledge and skills students need for success in a global, knowledge-based, innovation centered civilization. To accomplish these ambitious educational outcomes, AI is also enabling novel, powerful methods of teaching and learning. This valuable book also describes AI in education in the larger context of shifts in society.”
—Chris Dede, Timothy E. Wirth Professor in Learning Technologies, Technology, Innovation, and Education Program, Graduate School of Education, Harvard University
“Artificial Intelligence in Education is the best synthesis to date of the implications of code that learns—both the new aims it demands of secondary education and how educators can incorporate it into learning experiences.”
—Tom Vander Ark, CEO, Getting Smart, first director of education for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
“The authors of Artificial Intelligence in Education brilliantly provide a ‘How to’ roadmap to harness the power of AI in education. This book should be required reading for every educator, policymaker, and curriculum designer.”
—Robert Martellacci, EdTech Pioneer & co-founder & president, C21
“Artificial Intelligence in Education is really two books in one: the first presents a comprehensive curriculum framework for 21st century learning; the second is a thorough survey of the uses of AI in learning. It is an invaluable resource for those concerned with the future of education.”
—Tony Wagner, best-selling author of The Global Achievement Gap and Creating Innovators
From International Organizations
“Artificial intelligence will be disruptive, but few people understand that education is going to be in the first frontline. This brilliantly reflective and forward-looking book helps the education community in navigating the storm, avoiding both the Scylla of fashionable denial of teaching knowledge and the Charybdis of romantic restoration of the old disciplinary canon. Quite a daring intellectual undertaking!”
—Dirk Van Damme, Deputy Director, Directorate for Education and Skills, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
“This is a must read for educators and all stakeholders interested in the future of education which will be impacted—and more than likely transformed—by AI. The book is enjoyable and accessible as it models interdisciplinary learning by weaving in examples from domains including philosophy, science, engineering and popular culture. By staying rooted in the science of learning, the authors provide a critical lens on both the potential benefits and risks of AI without hyping the technology. I’ll also keep it handy as a ready reference to the many ‘what’ and ‘how’ frameworks and models that will help me to map a course forward though an uncertain but exciting future.”
—Jim Flanagan, chief operating and strategy officer, The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE)
“A must-read resource that enables you to cut through the hype around AI in education and think deeply about designing the future of teaching and learning. Balanced and clearly written for easy understanding, this is an essential guide to this early moment in the fourth Industrial Revolution.”
—Keith Krueger, CEO, Consortium for School Networking (COSN)
“Artificial Intelligence in Education is a breakthrough that delves into two very important and related subjects: moving to a more modern personalized curriculum and the role of AI in teaching and learning. The book provides an excellent overview of both of these areas, establishing a foundation to serve as a basis for bringing these two fields together towards improving education for every student.”
—Rob Abel, CEO, IMS Global Learning Consortium
“Artificial Intelligence in Education is an important, if at times disturbing, contribution to the debate on AI and provides a detailed analysis on how it may affect the way teachers and students engage in education. The book describes how artificial intelligence may impact on curriculum design, on the individualization of learning, and on assessment, offering some tantalizing glimpses into the future (the end of exams, your very own lifelong-learning companion) while not falling victim to tech-hype. The enormous ethical, technical and pedagogical challenges ahead are spelt out, and there is a real risk that the rapid advances in artificial intelligence products and services will outstrip education systems’ capacity to understand, manage and integrate them appropriately. As the authors conclude: ‘We can either leave it to others (the computer scientists, AI engineers and big tech companies) to decide how artificial intelligence in education unfolds, or we can engage in productive dialogue.’ I commend this book to anyone concerned with the future of education in a digital world.”
—Marc Durando, executive director, European Schoolnet
“Artificial Intelligence in Education is the first internationally comprehensive attempt to help policy makers and educators to read through the lines of artificial intelligence and find what is in there for them. Readers will certainly welcome the analytical perspectives and, even more, the value propositions that reaffirm the value of education in a world where many spheres of daily life, from work to culture and social life, could be dramatically challenged by artificial intelligence.”
—Francesc Pedró, chief, education policy, UNESCO
“The fourth industrial revolution will impact both K–12 education and what we need to learn later in life in an unprecedented way. This is a comprehensive and elaborate synthesis of how AI will change what we need to learn, but also how we will learn it in the future.”
—Ulrik Juul Christensen, chief executive officer—Area9 Lyceum; executive chairman—Area9 Group
“To begin to realize the potential of AI in education, education leaders and stakeholders globally need a much deeper and shared understanding of how AI intersects with curriculum modernization as we shift towards competency-based learning models. This book provides the strongest foundation available for deepening that understanding. It is a must-read for anyone seeking to go beyond the hype of AI towards appropriate, precise, and empowering uses of these tools for learning.”
—Maria Langworthy director of Worldwide Education Research, Microsoft
“The new book Artificial Intelligence in Education provides readers with both a view on what people should know to thrive in the era of AI, as well as how AI will impact the education industry and society more broadly. In addition to traditional knowledge and skills, learners in the future will need more meta-learning skills and character building experiences to be successful. The education industry will use AI to help both learners and teachers be more successful in adapting to rapid change, and advancing AI systems will have better and better models of users’ knowledge and goals. A recurring theme/warning in the book is that individuals must actively engage to shape these technological and economic forces towards desirable outcomes, or be prepared to be shaped by the forces in ways that are less desirable than they may wish.”
—Jim Spohrer, director of Mapping AI Progress with Cognitive Opentech Group IBM
“In these turbulent times with increasingly complex problems to solve, the need for better talent is essential for success, and survival. The role of AI as a means to leverage human intelligence is widely being explored. The application of AI to accelerating learning and making it more widely available is the very complex subject of this book. It is an extensive and comprehensive collection of frameworks and tutorials with appendices that make it usable by experts and novices alike. It is an essential tool for any leader or researcher exploring this field.”
—John Abele, chairman emeritus and co-founder Boston Scientific
From Foundations and Non-Profit Organizations
“In a world where information is readily available online, how can schools continue to be relevant? The emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) has exacerbated the need to have these conversations. Artificial Intelligence in Education immerses the reader in a discussion on what to teach students in the era of AI and examines how AI is already demanding much needed updates to the school curriculum, including modernizing its content, focusing on core concepts, and embedding interdisciplinary themes and competencies with the end goal of making learning more enjoyable and useful in students’ lives. The second part of the book dives into the history of AI in education, its techniques and applications –including the way AI can help teachers be more effective, and finishes on a reflection about the social aspects of AI. This book is a must-read for educators and policy-makers who want to prepare schools to face the uncertainties of the future and keep them relevant.”
—Amada Torres, Vice President, Studies, Insights, and Research, National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)
“We are experiencing the Fourth Industrial Revolution. We are increasingly living in a world of AI & Robotics—a digitized and globalized world. As educators, particularly as educators, we need guidance to navigate our way in this complex and uncertain age of Artificial Intelligence. Artificial Intelligence in Education: Promises and Implications for Teaching and Learning is a guide that was worth waiting for. ”
—Anthony Mackay, CEO, National Center for Education and the Economy (NCEE)
“The age of artificial intelligence is here, and the time to examine its potential implications for, and impacts on, education is now. Artificial Intelligence in Education makes a powerful case for shifting education’s focus to meaning as a basis for helping students build a foundation for effective lifelong learning and application. The book also provides a much-needed survey of current and possible future uses of AI in education. In identifying key issues facing the field, it invites educators to lead the way in reorienting education for this new age and answering fundamental questions about teaching and learning.”
—Katherine Prince, VP Strategic Foresight, KnowledgeWorks Foundation
Table Of Contents
Introduction: The Context
The Role of Assessments
What Should Students Learn? The Impact of AI on Curriculum
The Purposes of Education
Foundational Knowledge: What Do Students Need to Learn?
Overview of Core Concepts
Overview of Essential Content
Making Meaning and the Impact of Algorithms
What Content Should be Added
What Content Should be Removed
The How: Promises and Implications of AI for Teaching and Learning
AI in Education
The Background of AI
AI Techniques and Terminology
How AI Works in Education
Applications of AI in Education
Intelligent Tutoring Systems
Dialogue-Based Tutoring Systems
Exploratory Learning Environments
Automatic Writing Evaluation
What Other AIED is Out There?
What Else is Possible?
AI in Education—A Tentative Summary
The Social Consequences of AI in Education
Connections Between Topics and Concepts
Evolution of Content
What is AI?
AI Techniques and Terminology
Redesigning Education Standards
About the Authors
About the Authors
Maya Bialik is the research manager at CCR, and co-author of Four-Dimensional Education. She is passionate about appropriate interpretation and application of science at the personal and the policy levels. Maya holds a Master’s degree in Mind, Brain & Education from Harvard, and her background includes research and writing in complex systems, education, environmental science, psychology, neuroscience, and linguistics.
Charles Fadel is a global education thought leader and author, futurist and inventor, founder and chairman of Center for Curriculum Redesign, visiting scholar at Harvard GSE, member President’s Council at Olin College of Engineering, chair education committee at BIAC/OECD, co-author of Four-Dimensional Education (framework in 18 languages) and best-selling 21st Century Skills, founder and president of Fondation Helvetica Educatio (Geneva, Switzerland), and senior fellow at The Conference Board. He has worked with education systems and institutions in more than 30 countries. Having spent 25 years in technology, including his A.I. early startup Neurodyne, he was formerly Global Education Lead at Cisco Systems, visiting scholar at MIT ESG and Wharton/Penn CLO, and angel investor with Beacon Angels. He holds a BSEE, an MBA, and seven patents.
Click for full bio.
Wayne Holmes is an Assistant Professor in Learning Sciences and Innovation, at the Institute of Educational Technology, The Open University (UK). He is also a Visiting Associate Professor at both the Universidade de São Paulo and the Universidade Federal de Alagoas (Brazil), a Visiting Research Fellow at the Advanced Innovation Center for Future Education, Beijing Normal University (China), a member of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Artificial Intelligence (UK), and a consultant researcher at CCR. He holds a Ph.D. in Learning and Technology, from the University of Oxford, an MSc in Education (Oxford), and an M.A. in Philosophy. He is also the co-author of two reports about Artificial Intelligence in Education (“Intelligence Unleashed: An Argument for Artificial Intelligence in Education” and “Technology-enhanced Personalised Learning: Untangling the Evidence”) and he led the first-ever AIED ethics workshop, “Ethics in AIED: Who Cares?,” at the international AIED conference 2018.