Navigating AI in Education: Balancing Benefits and Risks by Craig Halper, CEO
Oct 23, 2023
Artificial intelligence (AI) is evolving at a remarkable pace, ushering in a transformative era in education. As an educational services company that partners with top publishers, higher ed institutions, edtech companies, and nonprofits, we have a unique view of how AI is shaping the future of learning. Though not all organizations are ready to work with AI, in partnership with some of our customers, we’ve made a significant investment in understanding and integrating AI. Through our work, it has become clear that balancing the risks and benefits of AI, especially regarding copyright and incorporating human expertise, is crucial.
Copyright in the Age of AI
Copyright concerns have become more complex with the advent of AI in education. Current case law doesn’t protect work generated entirely by AI because it lacks human authorship, which, according to the D.C. district court, “is a bedrock requirement of copyright.” For a work to receive copyright protection, human engagement with the content is critical. We need to remain aware of evolving copyright laws and proactively address infringement issues to ensure that educational materials are both innovative and legally sound.
There has been a flurry of lawsuits by authors against the developers of AI tools for violating their copyright protections. These authors, such as George R. R. Martin, believe that the AI large language models are ingesting and either reusing or generating content based on their original works. In addition to protecting your company’s copyright, involving experts in the development of content helps minimize exposure to such lawsuits.
Blending AI and Human Expertise
AI brings efficiency and scalability to education and should complement, not replace, human educators. It can handle tasks like translation, image and video generation, and content creation assistance, but human input remains paramount. Having partnered with clients to integrate AI into the content development process, we’ve found that AI excels at (borrowed) idea generation, but even with guidance on focus and frameworks, it doesn’t adequately address DEIA or consistently apply pedagogical approaches (Bloom’s, etc.).
Outcomes improve when educators guide AI through the generation process. Educators provide critical analysis, contextual understanding, empathy, and creativity that machines can’t replicate. The magic happens when AI-generated content and educator expertise come together. It’s about leveraging AI’s strengths while ensuring exceptional quality and learner experience.
At Six Red Marbles, our blended approach of integrating both artificial intelligence and educator expertise has been a game-changer for our clients who are eager to harness the power of AI. We’ve incorporated AI for translations, video and image creation, assessments and answer explanations, and more, demonstrating how AI can enhance content development without sacrificing learner outcomes.
An important benefit to consider: content generated in a blended (AI + educator) model is subject to a level of copyright protection, unlike content generated solely by AI.
Understanding the Needs of the Learner and the Educator
Our educational mission is to create engaging experiences for learners. AI can play an important role in helping us analyze data and trends and even create content, but it’s the human touch that discerns the subtle nuances of each student’s learning journey. By listening to learners and educators as we incorporate AI, we can better adapt and fine-tune solutions to meet evolving needs.
The fusion of AI-generated content and human expertise represents a path forward. This approach benefits educators, faculty, publishers, and curriculum creators by enhancing educational experiences and streamlining content development. In addition, it provides a critical extension of copyright protection for newly generated content.
At SRM, we are committed to tailoring AI solutions to meet our clients’ unique needs and preferences. To learn more about how we’re shaping the future of education through AI, please visit our AI Services page.
About Six Red Marbles
Six Red Marbles is a leading player in educational content and curriculum development. We are committed to helping our clients leverage AI and human expertise to provide exceptional learning experiences.
As we navigate this dynamic field, we look forward to collaborating to create a brighter future for education. Together, we can harness the power of AI and human knowledge to create engaging learning experiences.