‘Can AI be great equaliser for equity in education?’ – 26 Feb 2023

OTS brings together experts to harness AI potential in education

Artificial intelligence (AI) is more than just a technological solution. It is a tool that we can use to progress as humanity, just like we did with the fire, the wheel, the electricity and the internet, said Furqan Khan, a software engineer based in Canada, in a webinar on the inaugural day of the hybrid AI and Education Conference hosted by the non-profit organisation Off The School (OTS) on Saturday.

“A glimpse of the future shows us AI software being used for generating 3D videos to assist in explaining complex ideas or processes, software for self-paced learning, and real-time speech-to-speech translation that can bridge language barriers in education,” said Khan.

He discussed the potential areas where AI can be used to bridge the accessibility of education, such as AI personal assistants, remote learning, translation, mock exam generation, exam evaluation, and fact-checking, particularly in the context of Pakistan’s educational crisis. Khan also introduced over a hundred participants attending the webinar from several countries to various AI tools, such as Google Assistant, Wolfram Alpha, Otter, and ChatGPT.

Tariq, a researcher at Oregon State University in the US, mentioned that the current AI systems like ChatGPT can help students seek quick solutions but stressed the importance of data acquisition, annotation, and debiasing for AI to be truly effective.

OTS Founder Najam Soharwardi said it was a tragedy that 22.8 million children in Pakistan were not in school, and the recent climate disasters had only compounded this crisis.

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