A nod from the Indian government towards efforts in building expertise in artificial intelligence has led to academic integration of AI in skill courses across schools. In India, there are currently 10 lakh students enrolled across 5000 schools under the Atal Tinkering Labs program, focused on creating projects with a social impact.
But, a more prevalent impact AI has had on the way people learn is especially highlighted in the follow up to the pandemic, as various EdTech platforms emerged, bringing with them new and superior methods, ease of access, affordability and relevance to an evolving job market.
The transition to online learning has provided institutions the opportunity to deliver quality education to a larger group of students, including rural and marginalized communities from far and wide corners of the country. Platforms enabled with AI have provided an edge with solutions such as adaptive learning systems and chatbots, making personalization according to different students easier, while also enabling students with diverse options for gaining practical and relevant skills.
Integration of artificial intelligence into classroom systems has entailed a positive impact. Critical tasks such as classroom management, lesson planning, test preparation, grading and assessment have been made easier with the use of AI, benefiting both, teachers and students. With personalized learning experiences, students are assured better outcomes through real-time feedback, and are equipped with better engagement, retention and academic performance.
Growth of India’s digital economy has highlighted the importance of digital literacy. Education technology platforms leveraging AI have enabled students to develop essential skills like digital literacy and self-directed learning, providing opportunities for students to prepare for employment with industry-relevant skills. Students gain knowledge and learn to navigate online platforms, collaborate with other students and professionals in a virtual environment, and become proficient at using digital tools and resources.
Such platforms are further availing possibilities for remote learning, revolutionizing higher education, particularly in remote and underserved areas. Institutes and universities are able to leverage EdTech platforms with AI and ML capabilities to reach out to students that would otherwise be left out of the purview of higher education due to geographical constraints. The edge provided by such platforms is thus equipping students in a much better manner for the skills required by today’s workforce.
AI algorithms are being used in higher education today to match students’ competencies to suitable job opportunities, bridging the gap between the evolving needs of businesses and the emerging talent. Moreover, EdTech platforms powered by AI are transforming higher education in a much more direct way, that is, by influencing the role played by instructors.
With emerging developments, it is evident that teachers and instructors are required to deliver content suitable for in-person and online learning environments. This indicates a need for educators to know how to use AI-powered tools and leverage remote learning platforms to enhance their teaching methods. With AI, educators are able to apply a more student-centered approach, acting truly as facilitators for learning.
Under the Atal Tinkering Labs program undertaken by NITI Ayog and Intel India, there are currently 20,000 teachers imparting knowledge on AI, ML and IoT to an estimated 3,50,000 students through boot camps and mentoring camps. However, the student population in India is much larger than that, and would thus require support from a larger quantum of educators and professionals to be able to realize the full potential of the disruptive technology across industries.
Remote learning and education technology platforms have played a critical role in providing accessibility to advanced learning opportunities, and will continue to do so in the future. Evidently, with the advent of technologies such as AI, ML, IoT, data analytics and blockchain, the face of higher education has, and further stands to be transformed for the good.
-- Arihant Jain, Co-founder and CEO of Seekho.