Project Description

Written by a human being – Integrating AI technologies in teaching, learning and assessment, Part 1

By Katrine Wong

AI literacy

Artificial intelligence (AI) refers to the ‘capacity of computers or other machines to exhibit or simulate intelligent behaviour’ (OED).

‘Literacy’ traditionally means ‘the ability to read and write’ (OED). Nowadays, one’s literacy is expanded to include a range of literacies, including computer literacy, digital literacy and AI literacy.

‘AI literacy’ describes the competencies necessary in a habitat wherein AI pervades both our private and public spaces and transforms the way that we communicate, live and work with each other, and with machines (Long & Magerko, 2020; Sabouret, 2020). AI literacy is increasingly crucial for effective collaboration between humans and machines, and it can promote human-machine collaboration and augment human intellect and capabilities (Akata et al., 2020).

As teachers in this brave new world, are we ready to embrace AI? Are we ready to develop our AI literacy? Are we ready to incorporate AI in our teaching and learning?

We can start by familiarising ourselves with AI technologies and applications. Alongside ChatGPT (Chat Generative Pre-trained Transformer) – a generative AI tool that allows users to input prompts and receive human-like text, images or even videos that are created from large datasets in response to the text prompts, there are also, to name a few (as of 29 March 2023):

  • Caktus, an AI writer for many school subjects. Paid service.
  • Codewhisperer, an ML-powered coding bot. Paid service.
  • Google Workspace services can generate emails and texts based on prompts. Free/paid service.
  • Jasper, a writing assistant that creates phrases, paragraphs or documents based on prompts. Paid service.
  • Microsoft’s services and products, e.g., Bing, Edge, Word Online can now summarize text, write emails, and more. Free/paid service.
  • Murf, a text to voice service for creating professional videos and presentations. Paid service.
  • Poe, an AI chat bot. Paid service.
  • Rytr, a writing assistant. Paid service.

For a while now, I’ve been learning how various tools work, slowly (and we don’t know what’s in store tomorrow or next week or next semester!). As I’m learning more about these tools, I’m starting to view them critically and see what their context and embedded principles are. One thing that I’m sure about is that these tools are, to me, powerful search engines. I haven’t used any text generated by such tools in any of my writing, and I don’t have any plans to do so in the (near) future. ChatGPT, for example, is known to hallucinate and concoct false information. Having said that, as of 29 March 2023, it can make things up ‘fluently in more than 50 languages’ (“ChatGPT,” 2023).

Of course, it’s important to know how our students use and study with such tools. In my next blog post, I will talk about what teachers can do to help students learn responsibly with generative AI tools.

‏‏‎ ‎‏‏‎ ‎

‏‏‎ ‎References:
Akata, Z., Balliet, D., de Rijke, M., Dignum, F., Dignum, V., Eiben, G., Fokkens, A., Grossi, D., Hindriks, K., Hoos, H., Hung, H., Jonker, C., Monz, C., Neerincx, M., Oliehoek, F., Prakken, H., Schlobach, S., van der Gaag, L., van Harmelen, F., … Welling, M. (2020). A Research Agenda for Hybrid Intelligence: Augmenting Human Intellect With Collaborative, Adaptive, Responsible, and Explainable Artificial Intelligence. Computer, 53(8), 18–28. https://doi.org/10.1109/MC.2020.2996587

‘artificial intelligence, n.’ OED Online. www.oed.com/view/Entry/271625. Accessed 29 March 2023.

ChatGPT is a marvel of multilingualism. (2023, March 29). The Economist. https://www.economist.com/culture/2023/03/29/chatgpt-is-a-marvel-of-multilingualism

‘literacy, n.’ OED Online. www.oed.com/view/Entry/109054. Accessed 29 March 2023.

Long, D. & Magerko, B. (2020). What is AI Literacy? Competencies and Design Considerations. Proceedings of the 2020 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 1–16). https://doi.org/10.1145/3313831.3376727

Sabouret, N. (2020). Understanding artificial intelligence. CRC Press LLC. https://doi.org/10.1201/9781003080626