In the latest Interface Podcast episode, Jess McBeath and Ailish Hunter are joined by Ken Corish, Deputy CEO and Online Safety Director at SWGfL, to delve into the potential impact of artificial intelligence (AI) in education. The trio explores how AI could revolutionise education, reduce teacher workload, and reshape our interaction with technology, whilst also exploring the risks that we have seen from this technology.
With decades of experience in education and tech, Ken shares his observations on the evolution of technology and connectivity. He notes the rapid acceleration of AI in recent years but emphasizes that AI won't take over the world as seen in movies; it still requires further development and training.
Within education, Ken explains the various ways AI can complement students' learning, offering new opportunities to find relevant research and structure their work.
AI in Education
The podcast discusses potential applications of AI in education, envisioning a future where AI could analyse and mark students' work, create personalised learning experiences, and free up teachers' time. Ken stresses the importance of finding a middle ground in AI usage, avoiding extremes and recognising its role as a valuable tool for organising, structuring, and generating work.
Throughout the podcast, the benefits of using AI in education are considered, including increasing control, personalising learning experiences, and enhancing thinking capabilities. However, he also emphasises the potential for misuse concerning intellectual property and the quality of AI responses.
Using AI as a Tool
The discussion also explores practical considerations and solutions, with Ken suggesting platforms like Bing and Google Classroom for educators interested in exploring AI. They also discuss the benefits of experimenting with secure AI tools before implementing AI within schools. Ken also considers the need for policy development, acknowledging the iterative nature of creating policies in the rapidly evolving field of AI.
Considering the Future of AI
Looking towards the future, the conversation touches upon the anticipated peak of AI and whether it can reach artificial general intelligence (AGI) within the next three years. Future developments in AI are explored, and Ken suggests positive developments in the online safety world to respond to and regulate AI tools in the future.
However, he also indicates the significance of considering the safety of children and young people online, including emerging risks in AI content creation; emphasising how children could be exposed to or create harmful and illegal content through AI tools. Alongside this, the presenters discuss the importance of staying safe online and the new considerations needed when sharing personal photos online, with the emerging risk of images being altered by AI.
Further Information about AI
With AI capabilities continuing to grow, SWGfL has created several essential resources to support educators looking to understand the risks, considerations and benefits needed to make the most of AI safely.
Collaborating with the South East Regional Organised Crime Unit (SEROCU), SWGfL has developed lesson plans covering various areas surrounding AI, which are available for Key Stage 2, Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4. The lesson plans are a free activity plan that educators can use, and can be downloaded on our artificial intelligence information hub.
Alongside these resources, the hub features considerations and guidance that teachers, school staff and other professionals can explore to ensure a better understanding of AI and to allow the safe use of AI technology within their communities.