AI can Boost Education
AI can boost education. An illuminating case study by an ingenious business school professor showcases the utility of AI-generated critiques of student presentations.
Students presented normally and their audio was fed into the ChatGPT mobile app’s speech recognizer. ChatGPT4 then analyzed the transcribed speeches and furnished customized feedback for each presentation.
"Student presentation" by Midjourney.
90% of students rated the AI feedback as somewhat or very useful, with a whopping 55% branding it “very useful.” (The professor doesn’t specify how students may have appraised his critiques, but in my experience being a professor many years ago, if over half of the student cohort is exceptionally satisfied, one is performing admirably as a prof.)
All of the students (100%) rated the AI feedback as being somewhat or very realistic and actionable, an astonishing outcome given that it doesn’t know anything that wasn’t on the internet in 2021.
The sole metric where GhatGPT4 garnered less-than-laudatory student scores was for insightfulness. Here, the majority found the AI only “somewhat insightful” in giving them ideas they hadn’t thought of, and only 25% of students rated it very insightful.
But just wait for ChatGPT5. Judging by ChatGPT4’s leap in aptitude for passing university exams over ChatGPT3.5, the next iteration will bring a marked increase in perceptiveness.
This modest experiment from a single professor and class provides hard evidence, however preliminary, of AI’s boons for education. More real-world applications, and their evaluations, will hopefully emerge swiftly.
The immense need for better education, especially outside elite institutions, represents one of the greatest benefits of AI: delivering consistent excellence to all, even minor colleges in developing countries. As I’ve said before, AI scales, humans don’t.