Three ways principals can leverage AI for impact

Three ways principals can leverage AI for impact

In recent years, the high availability and fast uptake of generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools such as ChatGPT has opened a wealth of possibilities in multiple sectors – and education is no exception.

In fact, there is increasing awareness of the significant changes that these tools may provoke in the already complex ecosystems underpinning students’ learning experience, and these changes are especially challenging for school leaders.

Professor Abelardo Pardo, Dean of Programs (Information Technology & Mathematics) at UniSA STEM, says in their day-to-day operations, schools need to consider three main aspects that are quickly emerging in this new landscape.

“The first one is how to use AI tools for their own decision-making processes,” Professor Pardo told The Educator.

“School leaders may use the wealth of knowledge and data already available in their systems and embrace AI tools to detect and discover insights and patterns that are otherwise not obvious and consider them when making decisions.”

Professor Pardo said AI may provide valuable insights about support initiatives, evaluating their impact, and automatically detect elements in the system to deploy more selective interventions.

“The second aspect is how generative AI tools can support teachers in their design and deployment of learning experiences,” he said.

“These new tools provide and effective collaborative platform to produce initial designs or explore potential activities and assessments that can then be adequately contextualised by teachers.”

Professor Pardo said this may significantly reduce the time teachers require to design and deploy a learning experience or increase their overall quality.

“The third and final element is how to adapt assessments and activities so that students reliably acquire the expected skills, but also learn how to interact with these agents as part of their intellectual work and prepares them to include them as part of their portfolio of competencies,” he said.

Professor Pardo said the fast pace of adoption of this type of technology is pressuring school leadership teams to address these concerns and provide strategic guidance to all stakeholders to effectively capitalise its potential.

“This strategic guidance is likely to have a profound effect on how effectively the technology is carefully embedded in day-to-day operations.”