SINGAPORE: The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) is changing society as we know it. However, as the simulation of human intelligence gained popularity in the form of chatbots, apps, and tools, it has also raised concerns, especially in the education sector.
According to an article by Forbes, school leaders in the UK have warned of the “real and present” threat that AI poses to the educational sector. In a letter to the London Times, they highlighted not only the risk of students using AI to plagiarise and cheat but also concerns about what effects AI may have on the mental health of both students and teachers.
Furthermore, even sectors outside of education had major concerns about AI, with many seeing it as a major threat to their jobs. However, according to The Guardian, though the rise of AI may bring about changes to various sectors and make certain occupations obsolete, it will also create jobs.
And in Singapore, it seems schools are learning to ride with the waves, teaching students how to harness the power of AI the right way.
The Singapore Ministry of Education states, “As part of Singapore’s National Artificial Intelligence (AI) Strategy, as well as to support the implementation of the EdTech Masterplan 2030, MOE is enhancing the capabilities of the Singapore Student Learning Space (SLS) with AI learning tools to support greater customisation of learning for our students and to augment our teachers’ professional practice.”
The Adaptive Learning System, which AI enables, is designed to make customisations for students.
“The AI-enabled Adaptive Learning System uses machine learning to make customised learning recommendations for each student, based on how the student responds to questions and activities as they learn a topic,” the MOE states.
“In June 2023, MOE launched the Adaptive Learning System for Mathematics for three topics covered at the Primary 5 level. The Adaptive Learning System will be expanded progressively to include more topics, levels and subjects.”
As of December 2023, the Language Feedback Assistant for English and the Short Answer Feedback Assistant were available under the SLS.
In recent news, schools around Singapore have been integrating AI into their classes with the aim of helping students learn new skills.
According to an article by ZaoBao, design and technology students from Puiya Middle School use AI to generate ideas and design templates. Yunqing Middle School students, on the other hand, use AI to generate ideas for projects in their nutrition and food science classes.
In both institutions, students had to learn how to properly fact-check and cite sources for their reports–a practice that requires an understanding of ethics in the age of AI.
The article also talked about how students in higher learning institutions have been learning to use AI efficiently. For example, in collaboration with Singapore’s National Artificial Intelligence Core Initiative (AI Singapore), Anderson Serangoon Junior College allows students to interact with AI experts and learn about AI’s different uses.
Yet another example is design students at Temasek Polytechnic, who are taught how to use AI tools that generate images to help with design plans.
With such a mindset in place, it seems Singapore is making waves in the education scene, training its youth to use technological advancements such as AI to make a difference in the world.