Artificial Intelligence (AI) is set to become a high school subject in South Korea in the second semester of the next school year.
The Yonhap News Agency reported the decision by the country’s Ministry of Education on November 20. It has yet to be mentioned on the ministry’s English-language webpage.
According to Yonhap, the ministry said two elective courses would be available to high school students nationwide: Introductory AI and Mathematics of AI.
Coronavirus spurs development of digital technology
Yonhap quoted the ministry as saying the Coronavirus pandemic had hastened the development of digital technology, which had made it more important for high school students to learn about AI.
Yonhap reported that the ministry had also said South Korea would put AI on the curriculum of its elementary and middle schools and kindergartens by 2025.
Preparing for Artificial Intelligence Classes
According to Yonhap, the ministry said that next year it would start providing educational materials about Artificial Intelligence to all elementary and secondary students. The news service added that the ministry had said it would work to ensure that teachers had the necessary training for teaching about AI. Yonhap quoted the ministry as saying special material would be developed to enable kindergarten pupils to learn AI through playful activities.
Learning about Artificial Intelligence
“How To Teach Artificial Intelligence” by education writer Tom Vander Ark appeared on Forbes.com earlier this year.
In the article, Vander Ark pointed to schools in the US – such as Montour Public Schools in Pennsylvania –where students were taught about AI.
Vander Ark said education about Artificial Intelligence should enable people to do three things:
- Recognize AI. All people needed to be able to understand how AI was impacting their lives, Vander Ark said. Students ought to be aware that AI could have positive and negative effects, he said.
- Use AI. All people should have a chance to utilize AI for solving problems, Vander Ark said. He mentioned that students at Montour Middle School were able to use AI to solve real problems.
- Build AI. Those high school students interested in pursuing a career in AI or computer science “should have a pathway for building AI,” Vander Ark said. Several websites made computer science and AI learning material available for free, he said.
Google offered materials to computer science students at csfirst.withgoogle.com and experiments for AI students at experiments.withgoogle.com, Vander Ark noted.
He pointed out that free courses were available at Code.org and edX.org.
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