DEL4ALL Thematic Workshop on AI, ML and digital games in education
About the event
On the 30th April 2021, 3CL hosted a DEL4ALL Thematic workshop focusing on the role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in everyday life and the changes underway for educators and learners. The workshop also addressed the impact of Machine learning (ML) on education systems and research and how digital games may improve the learning experience by improving adaptation, problem-solving and critical thinking skills. Dr Giovanni Rimassa, from Martel Innovate, introduced the objectives and goals of the DEL4ALL project, and Dr Alex Grech, the director of the 3CL kicked off the session by asking panellists for a short elevator speech on their background and experiences in the fields of AI, ML and Digital Games.
The Thematic workshop took the form of an an open discussion, underpinned by a common interest in the affordances of these technologies to lifelong learning journeys and the challenges to be navigated by education institutions in minimising barriers to adoption.
- Prof Georgios Yannakakis, the Director at the Institute of Digital Games, University of Malta, spoke bout how AI and Ml can help personalise education by detecting various needs and skillets in non-formal educational settings. Games constitute as a natural way of learning and can help students follow personalised learning pathways using emotions and interactions.
- Dr Vanessa Camilleri, Lecturer at the Faculty of Information & Communication Technology, University of Malta, highlighted that AI can stimulate problem-solving skills and creativity to reach solutions.
- Prof Alexiei Dingli, Professor at the Faculty of Information & Communication Technology, University of Malta, observed how we are moving away from the industrial model in education to focus more on individual students’ abilities using technologies.
- Dr Gege Gatt, CEO at EBO.ai. highlighted that men and machines are good at fundamentally different things. Men can form plans, making decisions at complicated decisions, while machines are better at compiling enormous volumes of data.
- Gašper Hrastelj, the Secretary-General of the Slovenian National Commission for UNESCO, highlighted the importance of AI as a research area, and how this was a trigger for the creation of the International Research Centre on Artificial Intelligence (IRCAI).
- Dr Martin Hlosta, Research Fellow, Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics, The Open University, discussed challenges with the promotion of AI, such as the bias around the technology, the fear from AI and the general understanding of what AI can do for both institutions and learners.
- Dr Iro Voulgari, Research Support Officer at the Institute of Digital Games, University of Malta explained that fears from digital games were not as significant as fears of AI itself. However, AI systems are part of our everyday life, without most people understanding the pervasiveness of the technologies when using social media and other electronic media channels. Digital Games can be used to teach students how AI applications work and think critically about AI’s role.
The DEL4ALL Thematic workshop also addressed how emerging technologies may contribute towards innovation and change in education institutions but that much is dependent on the willingness of individuals to drive change. The adaption of AI to digital games was identified as a significant opportunity. ML may also combine different data sources in the education system. Nevertheless, there needs to be a consensus on a sustainable, ethical framework for these technologies if they are to be adopted as components of groundbreaking interactive learning experiences. Engaging students and educators in the design of educational games may offer new opportunities for co-learning and ways of working out issues relating to ethics and big data.
The DEL4ALL team would like to thank the panellists, presenters, and attendees for their valuable inputs at our thematic workshop. In case you could not attend the webinar, you can watch it here.