New webinar attended: AI for education: a practical guide for teachers

My autumn professional development drive has turned into something of a fact-finding mission, this time in the form of a wide-reaching webinar from Aonia Educación on the impact of AI on education. 

Presenters Patricia Ferrante, Joaquin Peña Siles PhD., Mariano Martin Gordillo and Jose F Quesada took us on a whistle-stop tour, touching on issues like AI-fuelled creativity, the moral dilemma of AI and how the classic classroom model has not changed much and therefore not kept pace with advances in technology. All food for thought. 

Some highlights:

  • AI should relieve teachers of the most boring tasks to free them up for the exciting, engaging stuff that impacts the society of the future.

  • AI capability is doubling every 6 months [can we really afford to ignore this?].
 The way we assess pupils needs to change; AI should be a creativity ally, not an accomplice in cheating.
  • Giving pupils as much decision-making freedom as possible will boost their engagement and help them critically exploit future AI developments.

  • We can think of AI as a copilot – a facilitator, but not there to do everything for us.

The presenters briefly mentioned AI’s impact on the translation sector – I had hoped to hear more on this but the subject was glossed over. Otherwise, it was a comprehensive discussion around a controversial topic. AI is going to impact how we educate the society of the future, whether we like it or not.

It all got me thinking about my own position on AI. There are tools out there I’m keen to try when I don’t have a time-sensitive translation project on my desk. I figure if AI can make me quicker at what I’m already good at, why not?

But I am still far from convinced that I am about to be replaced by a machine. Translation buyers in all sectors (and I certainly hope this includes the world of education) who care about quality and not just the bottom line will not feel comfortable entrusting their content to AI – at least not without the critical and creative intervention of a specialist linguist.

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