In schools around the world, education leaders, educators, and students are exploring the power of AI to save time, personalize learning, and increase the efficiency of their operations. Although AI has already been used to boost inclusivity and productivity, recent advancements offer the opportunity to reimagine solutions to longstanding challenges in education at a time when they are perhaps needed most.
“The potential for AI to extend and scale the work of educators is encouraging. We find ourselves accelerated into a digitally transformed world of education, riding on a pandemic-fueled evolution of innovation. When thoughtfully leveraged, this places AI in a unique and powerful position to help us address challenges we face around ensuring equitable access to education.” - Dr. Jose L. Dotres, Superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools
At Microsoft Education, we are focused on three critical areas: empowering our customers to bring their visions to life, enhancing the value we can provide through Microsoft products, and deeply partnering with the education community to responsibly solve some of the most pressing challenges.
Empowering schools around the world
Education organizations are dreaming up ways to responsibly integrate AI tools into teaching and learning and finding that many of these dreams are quickly becoming reality. For example, the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Education set out to evaluate the impact of AI and quickly identified opportunities for integration within their education system. We are excited to partner with them to develop their virtual learning assistants through Azure OpenAI Service, and assist them in their efforts to equip students with the necessary skills to utilize AI in their academic and professional careers.
“The future holds numerous opportunities and challenges, and as a Ministry of Education, we are keen to benefit from the opportunities and confront any challenges. We believe that integrating AI within our educational system and harnessing modern and cutting-edge technologies is key to improving the quality of education and equipping our future leaders with the skills they need to flourish in an ever-evolving world. Our partnership with Microsoft to build an AI tutor is another step in our ongoing efforts to enhance the learning experience of our students. We will continue working shoulder to shoulder with our partners to contribute to driving the future of education.” – United Arab Emirates Ministry of Education
It is inspiring to enable schools, our partners, and education technology providers to maximize the transformative potential of AI in a variety of ways, such as developing new learning tools, providing an aid for creating content, building AI literacy, improving student services, simplifying scheduling, and more.
Enhancing Microsoft products
At our Reimagine Education event last month, we shared examples of schools that are leveraging Learning Accelerators to improve learning outcomes and save classroom time. Since then, we have been hard at work across the company to reinvent the tools people use every day. We’ve been thrilled to share the new Bing and Edge, Copilot in Power Platform, and a whole new way to work with Microsoft 365 Copilot. These launches have the potential to redefine the way technology can support us in work, life, and learning.
Today we are sharing a preview of passage generation, one of the many ways we plan to support educators by embedding AI technology into our products. Within Reading Progress, passage generation reviews data from Education Insights to help create personalized reading passages based on words or phonics rules a class or specific student found most challenging. Educators can customize the passage by selecting suggested practice words, generating options, and then publishing their passage as a new reading assignment.
Passage generation leverages the power of Azure OpenAI, including enterprise-grade security and built-in tools to detect and mitigate harmful use, plus an additional set of platform innovations to support responsible usage in education. Passage generation is in an initial private preview and will continue to be refined as we learn from and build with our testing community. Community feedback will only become more important as we consider future opportunities for AI-powered features across our products.
Working together responsibly
Our advancements in AI are grounded in our company mission to empower every person and organization on the planet to achieve more and guided by our approach to responsible AI. The Microsoft AI principles of fairness, reliability and safety, privacy and security, inclusiveness, accountability, and transparency are applied to the needs of education institutions, and products are designed in collaboration with industry experts. Further, new innovations are built on Microsoft’s comprehensive approach to security, compliance, and privacy. We will share more information with IT teams as previews expand more broadly so that they can plan with confidence and enable features when it is right for their organization.
The potential applications of AI in education are tremendous. This makes it even more important to ensure that users, from education leaders to individual learners, have the resources to be able to effectively use new AI tools. To this end, we will continue to share relevant learning paths and create new modules to support the ever-increasing importance of digital literacy.
We recognize that AI technology will keep evolving, and that this is only the start of a journey that will require ongoing engagement with leaders, educators, staff, students, and their families. We look forward to continuing to listen, learn, and innovate alongside educational organizations to make the promise of AI a reality. Read Microsoft’s approach to AI to learn more and stay tuned for future updates.