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AI and Ethics

A Guide for the Ethical Use of Artificial Intelligence in K-12 Schools

Last Updated on April 15, 2024

There are many benefits of artificial intelligence (AI) applications in education.  Many of these include personalized learning, automated assessment, predictive analytics, and chatbot guides.  These applications leverage machine learning with predetermined algorithms created by humans and have shown promise to support teachers and students in the teaching and learning process.  

New to this landscape is the introduction and use of generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) tools.  Many of these tools utilize large language models pre-trained on enormous amounts of unfiltered data (ChatGPT being the most commonly known example) with increased risk to their use.  Many lack accuracy and reliability as well as perpetuate systemic bias and discrimination inherent in the materials used to train them.

School leaders and educators have a moral imperative to identify these risks and introduce the ethical challenges of artificial intelligence (AI) in education to parents, teachers, and students.  Ethical challenges include:

There are many questions to address before implementing GenAI, including:

To help address these ethical challenges, LEARN has developed a guide for the use of artificial intelligence in education…

Code of Ethics for the Use of Generative AI in Quebec

Preamble

As we embrace the innovative potentials of Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) within our educational environments, it becomes imperative to establish a framework that ensures its responsible, ethical, and equitable use. This Code of Ethics outlines the principles and guidelines for all members of the School Board community, including students, teachers, administrators, and parents, in the province of Quebec.

1.1 Data Protection: All AI technologies employed will adhere strictly to the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) and Quebec’s Act respecting the protection of personal information in the private sector, ensuring the safeguarding of personal data against unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration, or destruction.

1.2 Consent for Data Use: Explicit consent must be obtained from individuals (or their guardians, in the case of minors) before their personal data is used for any AI-related applications. This includes educational tools, assessments, or personalized learning experiences.

1.3 Confidentiality in AI Training: Any use of personal data for training AI models must ensure anonymity and confidentiality, preventing the identification of individuals from the data used.

2.1 Bias Mitigation: Efforts must be made to ensure AI tools do not perpetuate or amplify biases related to race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, socio-economic status, or any other characteristic. Regular audits and updates should be conducted to mitigate biases.

2.2 Accessibility: AI technologies must be accessible to all students, including those with disabilities. This includes the provision of equitable access to technology and consideration of diverse learning needs in the development and deployment of AI tools.

2.3 Cultural Sensitivity: AI content and tools should respect and reflect the cultural and linguistic diversity of our community, promoting an inclusive educational environment.

3.1 Educational Purpose: The use of AI must be directly related to educational outcomes, enhancing learning experiences without detracting from the human aspects of education.

3.2 Transparency: Teachers and students should be informed about how AI tools work, the data they use, and their limitations, fostering an understanding of AI’s role in education.

3.3 Intellectual Property: Respect for intellectual property rights, including adherence to copyright laws and the appropriate use of AI-generated content, is mandatory.

4.1 Psychological Impact: The introduction of AI technologies should consider the psychological and emotional well-being of students, avoiding over-reliance on technology and ensuring it complements human interaction and pedagogy.

4.2 Online Safety: AI applications must be safe and secure, protecting users from harmful content and ensuring they are age-appropriate.

5.1 Oversight Committee: An AI Ethics Oversight Committee, comprising educators, administrators, parents, and student representatives, will be established to monitor the implementation of this code, address concerns, and update guidelines as necessary.

5.2 Training and Education: Ongoing training on the ethical use of AI will be provided for teachers, students, and staff, ensuring the community is informed and capable of utilizing AI responsibly.

5.3 Reporting and Review: A mechanism for reporting violations of this code will be implemented, alongside a regular review process to adapt to technological advancements and evolving ethical standards.

Conclusion

The School Board is committed to fostering an environment where Generative AI serves as a tool for enhancing educational outcomes, promoting equity, and respecting the dignity and rights of all community members. By adhering to this Code of Ethics, we ensure that our journey towardtowards integrating AI into education is guided by principles of responsibility, inclusivity, and respect.

Please be advised: The information provided in the section regarding Gen AI, including tools and resources, is intended solely for informational purposes. Our organization does not endorse any specific companies mentioned therein, nor the views expressed by any authors in this section. It is crucial to understand that the opinions expressed are exclusively those of the authors and may not reflect the views of our organization. Furthermore, please be aware that this blog does not offer legal or artificial intelligence advice. The content presented here is provided “as is” without warranties. All curated resources are intended for informational purposes, and it should be noted that our organization does not guarantee the accuracy or endorse any views contained within these resources.

LEARN AI in Education Section by LEARN is licensed under CC BY 4.0

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