Sat. Feb 24th, 2024

The AIDE Project is Forging a Path for Sri Lankan Educators to Embrace AI

By Arteculate Feb 12, 2024 #LEARN #Sponsored
AIDE | Sri Lanka | LEARN | Education | AI

In recent times, Generative AI (Gen-AI) has emerged as a transformative force across several sectors. This includes education, where it streamlines labour-intensive tasks like lesson planning and content creation, granting educators more time for meaningful student engagement. Additionally, as a proficient virtual research assistant, Gen-AI addresses challenges in academic research by aiding in literature reviews, data analysis, and academic writing. This convergence of technological prowess with learning principles contributes to a compelling, impactful, and innovative learning experience. 

Thus, for educators, embracing Gen-AI is critical in the digital age. However, it’s imperative to acknowledge Gen-AI’s nascent stage, requiring educators to responsibly and ethically leverage its potential, ensuring alignment with educational values and upholding principles of fairness and privacy. To help educators navigate this new paradigm is the goal of the AIDE project by the UNESCO Chair of Technology & Innovation at Asia Pacific University (APU), Malaysia, which is now coming to Sri Lanka through the efforts of LEARN. Here’s how this partnership is poised to democratise access to Gen-AI for Sri Lanka’s educators. 

What is the AIDE project? 

The AI for Innovative Design & Education (AIDE) project implementation in Sri Lanka, spearheaded by LEARN and operating under the auspices of the UNESCO Chair at APU, Malaysia, embodies a pioneering initiative poised to unfold in Sri Lanka. Aimed at the island nation’s, higher education academics, vocational college trainers, and school teachers, The program’s mission is to empower them with the knowledge and skills essential for the responsible and creative integration of Gen-AI tools into their professional practices. Thereby, allowing them to leverage these tools to create impactful learning experiences. 

To fulfil this mission, the AIDE project encompasses several strategically designed initiatives to democratise access to Gen-AI. The initiative will commence from March 11 to March 14, 2024, beginning with a series of workshops. These are designed to help educators enhance their teaching and research capabilities. It will then be followed up by a conference, open to a wider audience, which will feature keynote speeches, presentations, and collaborative initiatives exploring the use of Gen-AI in academia. Collectively, they represent the initial phase of the partnership between LEARN and AIDE to empower Sri Lankan educators.

How Sri Lankan educators can join the AIDE programme

For educators eager to be part of the AIDE program, the application process is straightforward and accessible. This inclusive program welcomes Sri Lankan educators across all levels. In a noteworthy collaboration, LEARN is partnering with Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Education to broaden the program’s impact. This expansion allows higher education academics, vocational college trainers, and school teachers to actively participate in the AIDE initiative. Individuals from these diverse academic backgrounds can effortlessly register for the workshops and conferences by visiting www.learn.ac.lk/aide. 

The collaboration also introduces exclusive fellowships, a testament to LEARN commitment to acknowledging and supporting impactful educators. Aspiring fellows have the option to apply directly or be nominated by the Head of a LEARN Member Institute or the Ministry, ensuring a comprehensive representation. Considering the program’s limited capacity, LEARN will meticulously curate a select cohort by shortlisting applicants and extending invitations to those chosen. The final selection of participating educators for the AIDE program in Sri Lanka will be thoughtfully curated by LEARN, ensuring a diverse and dedicated cohort committed to advancing their skills in Gen-AI integration.

What to expect at the AIDE workshops and conference

Over four days, attendees of the AIDE programme workshops will explore Gen-AI and its multifaceted applications in higher education. The overarching theme of these workshops is to empower Sri Lankan educators with the knowledge and skills to responsibly utilise Gen-AI tools. Across diverse modules, participants will explore how the technology can be used for course design, research, academic writing, administrative tasks, and more. Collectively, these modules aim to demonstrate to educators how Gen-AI can serve as a transformative force in higher education to elevate the learning experience. 

Furthermore, each day of the program will feature workshops dedicated to two modules, providing a focused exploration of the possibilities Gen-AI holds in education. To serve individual preferences, applicants have the flexibility to choose specific modules. However, the final list of participants for each workshop will be determined based on availability and the profile of the applicants. Thereby ensuring a dynamic mix of educators ready to embrace the potential of Gen-AI in higher education.

The AIDE programme then culminates with its conference, extending its impact beyond the workshop participants to a broader audience of Sri Lankan educators and Gen-AI practitioners. This conference will serve as an awareness session, incorporating keynote speeches, presentations, and collaborative initiatives. Its purpose is to provide a wider community of Sri Lankan educators with valuable insights into the ethical and innovative use of Gen-AI in higher education. In unison, the workshop and conference contribute to the overarching mission of the AIDE project to revolutionise education by empowering educators to harness the potential of Gen-AI in shaping the future of learning and research.

What makes AIDE unique

AIDE is distinctive in its vision for education, envisioning a transformative shift where Gen-AI is used responsibly, innovatively, and ethically. A future where educators aren’t simple consumers but rather skilled practitioners utilising it to enhance the quality of education and research. Thus, contributing to the global pursuit of quality learning as emphasised in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Towards this ambitious goal, the programme’s unparalleled value lies in its comprehensive framework. 

This comprehensive framework is purposefully designed to assist educators in seamlessly integrating Gen-AI into educational practices, covering policies, guidelines, upskilling workshops, and personalised support mechanisms. Crucially, AIDE’s distinctive emphasis on ethical AI use ensures that educators understand the technology’s capabilities and limitations. Paired with a strong alignment of pedagogical principles, AIDE ensures that Gen-AI serves to support and enhance educational outcomes rather than just automating processes. Through this multifaceted strategy, AIDE propels educators towards a growth mindset, ensuring that technology in education is both innovative and grounded in pedagogical best practices.

LEARN & AIDE: The beginning of an empowering partnership

As AIDE sets its course in Sri Lanka, the program emerges as a beacon of transformative education, envisioning a future where educators harness the power of Gen-AI.  In its facilitative role, LEARN plays a pivotal part in introducing this visionary initiative to Sri Lankan higher education educators. Recognizing the vital significance of embracing new technologies, the partnership is a continuing example of LEARN’s commitment to empowering Sri Lanka’s higher education sector. 

The upcoming AIDE workshops and conference mark not just the commencement of an enriching experience for participants but a promising leap forward for education in Sri Lanka. Post these pivotal events, AIDE envisions extending the impact further. A significant stride in this direction is the plan to make program materials publicly available as Open Educational Resources. This strategic decision reflects AIDE’s dedication to democratising access to Gen-AI, ensuring its impact extends beyond the immediate participants to benefit a wider audience.

Looking forward, AIDE foresees an ongoing commitment to skills development in Sri Lanka with the promise of more upskilling workshops in the future. This farsighted approach not only underscores AIDE’s dedication to fostering continuous learning among educators but also signifies a sustained effort to keep pace with the evolving landscape of technology in education. Ultimately, AIDE, through its partnership with LEARN, is poised to equip Sri Lankan tertiary educators with practical tools and a growth mindset to embrace innovative technologies and novel teaching methods of the digital era. 

If you’re an educator eager to be at the forefront of this journey, sign up for the AIDE programme by visiting the AIDE Sri Lanka website (www.learn.ac.lk/aide) today.

By Arteculate

Arteculate is your guide to the Asian tech industry. We give you unparalleled insights, accurate, local tech news, thoughtful features and sometimes scathing opinions on where things are headed. Stay tuned for the best of Asia!

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