How Artificial Intelligence Will Change EdTech For Good

How Artificial Intelligence Will Change EdTech For Good
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Summary: This article examines the ways in which AI will be used to create and manage learning content. What will it mean for the industry and what products can we expect to see in the next two years?

Will Artificial Intelligence Change EdTech?

The media is currently heralding Artificial Intelligence (AI) as the next big thing. The question I want to address here is, is this justified? Will we all be out of jobs? And how will Artificial Intelligence change EdTech?

Is The Hype Justified?

The answer to this question is: yes! Anyone who has used the array of AI tools currently available has had their cynicism seriously damaged by the capabilities of some of the systems available. My girlfriend had the same doubts, then I asked ChatGTP to create a Shakespearian sonnet about her dog, and she was instantly converted. AI is not limited to text-based trickery; it can create video avatars (Synthesia), produce audio voice-overs in your own voice (, or produce amazing images like the one above from a text prompt ("airbrush a fantasy image about a robot designing eLearning" on MidJourney).

AI is good at these tasks because of the sheer scale of its experience. When we are asking AI to write an article (not this one, I must stress) or paint a picture, it has read and categorized more articles on that subject, examined more paintings, and seen more videos on writing styles and painting techniques, etc., than anyone could process in a lifetime. The power of quantum computers means a lifetime of experience can be processed in a matter of seconds. Now input a feedback loop into the AI, and we have a cocktail of knowledge and experience which will grow exponentially. The advances made in the last two years are remarkable; what will be possible in two years’ time will make today's efforts look like the scribblings of a child. We will soon be able to ask AI to create entire videos for us, based on a text prompt (in fact this has already started!).

So, Will This Put Us All Out Of Work?

Let's answer this question from the perspective of a learning designer, since this is the area in which we are working and it encompasses many of the areas which AI is mastering. You can ask AI to map out learning goals on any given topic, and then write a script on those goals. You can ask AI to examine each script and add imagery to each screen. You can even ask AI to record the voice-over and add video presenters. The learning that will be created will have far higher production values than anything you can imagine, but it will still need a human contributing as before to drive the process. There is still the need to add microlearning and embed it into the production, tailor the message to suit each organization's needs, and add custom imagery that can be combined with newly created images to truly personalize the learning experience. In short, it will not be the end of the eLearning designer; it will be the start of a process where the quality of eLearning improves beyond imagination. The designer will use these new tools as a partner, to produce better and more effective learning.

How Will Artificial Intelligence Change EdTech?

Very soon, it will be possible to create learning from a single text prompt. AI will list the learning goals, write the script, create a quiz, and design the learning, based in photorealistic computer-generated worlds with video game production values. AI will also be able to examine the content of what you have learned and recommend other learning based on it. It can also design pathways for learning ideally suited to your needs.

Outside the constraints of learning systems, AI powered virtual assistants, trained on knowledge held within the Learning Management System, will give just-in-time knowledge to employees. This type of learning, often referred as "signposting", allows for a limitless amount of knowledge to be at the fingertips of every employee in your organization as and when needed.

In Conclusion

We prefer to see the future as bright and exciting, one where AI will hugely enhance the online learning process. The important thing is not to be fearful of AI, to embrace it so you can achieve incredible things. As a friend of mine said, "there is no need to fear a Terminator-style future, since we always know where the plugs are!"

Image Credits:

  • The image within the body of the article has been supplied by the author. It was created using MidJourney.
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