Universities want to ensure staff and students are ‘AI-literate’ - Artificial Intelligence - NewsUniversities want to ensure staff and students are ‘AI-literate’ - Artificial Intelligence - News

Russell Group Universities Pledge Commitment to Ethical Use of ai and ChatGPT

In a joint statement published today, the 24 Vice Chancellors of Russell Group universities have pledged their commitment to ensuring ethical and responsible use of generative ai and new technologies like ChatGPT in education.

Importance of ai Literacy Skills

Universities are recognizing the importance of equipping students and staff with ai literacy skills to leverage opportunities presented by technological advancements in teaching and learning. Sheila Flavell CBE, Chief Operating Officer at Jisc, commented: “With businesses demanding new hires with the latest tech skills and analytics capabilities, providing students with a well-rounded education and qualifications in this area is essential for creating a dynamic workforce ready for the future.”

Fostering Understanding of ai Values in Education

The new principles, developed in collaboration with ai and educational experts, acknowledge both the risks and opportunities associated with generative ai. Ross Sleight, Chief Strategy Officer, EMEA at Microsoft, said: “The Russell Group universities’ joint statement serves to foster a shared understanding of the values and considerations surrounding ai in education.”

Five Principles for Ethical Use of ai in Education

The statement emphasizes Russell Group universities’ role in cultivating ai leaders who can navigate an ai-enabled world effectively and responsibly. The following are the five principles outlined in the joint statement:

  1. Transparency: Universities should provide clear information about ai use in teaching and learning to students, staff, and the wider community.
  2. Fairness: Universities should ensure equal access to educational opportunities regardless of students’ backgrounds or abilities and avoid bias in ai algorithms.
  3. Accountability: Universities must take responsibility for the ethical implications of ai use, ensuring that students’ privacy is respected and data protection policies are followed.
  4. Robustness: Universities should test ai systems for reliability, validity, and fairness before implementing them in educational contexts.
  5. Continuous Learning: Universities must continually assess the impact of ai on assessment practices and adapt to emerging technologies, viewing this as an opportunity rather than a threat.

UK Government’s Consultation on ai in Education

This announcement comes closely after the UK Government launched a consultation on the use of generative ai in education in England. Dr Tim Bradshaw, Chief Executive of the Russell Group, highlighted the significance of ai breakthroughs in reshaping work dynamics and emphasized the importance of preparing students with the skills required for successful careers. He also emphasized the need to support university staff as they explore the potential of ai to enhance teaching methods and engage students effectively.

Embracing the Opportunities Presented by ai

As the field of ai advances rapidly, John Kirk, Group Deputy CEO at Jisc, emphasized the importance of understanding and embracing its transformative potential. He stated: “ai has the capacity to enhance our creative industries and help businesses transform marketing and customer interactions for the long term.” By prioritizing the welfare of students and staff and safeguarding the integrity of education, the principles will help ensure that ai adoption in universities is guided by clear and understood values.

Find the Full Principles on ai in Education (PDF)

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By Kevin Don

Hi, I'm Kevin and I'm passionate about AI technology. I'm amazed by what AI can accomplish and excited about the future with all the new ideas emerging. I'll keep you updated daily on all the latest news about AI technology.