2023.4.25 Division of Academic Affairs, Ritsumeikan University
In recent years, rapid advances in AI technology have led to the development of a wide array of services and businesses utilizing artificial intelligence in many industries and sectors. The use of AI is not unrelated to the world of education, and educational practices that utilize Ai-generated outcomes are already being implemented in various educational and learning settings.
The Ritsumeikan Academy commenced its mid-term plan entitled “R2030 Academy Vision Challenge Design” in AY2021, and as part of this, we aim to develop a DX platform for education and research to achieve the policy goals of becoming a next-generation research university and producing innovative and emerging talent. As we systematically promote education and research DX and move forward with efforts to elaborate upon the Challenge Design, we must note that several educational practices and projects that take full advantage of technology are already underway. These include projects that utilize generative AI tools like neural machine translation. As an institution of education and research, we believe that a university must proactively seek out appropriate ways to use new technologies so that they contribute to the development of research and the enhancement of inquisitiveness in education, all while carefully assessing the possibilities and limitations of these technologies.
In today's world where the pace of technological progress continues to accelerate, the advantages and disadvantages of new technologies are inextricably linked, and it is not possible to selectively enjoy or exclude one without the other. Therefore, for generative AI to be utilized for the sound development of education and research, users must be equipped with the literacy to appropriately handle the technology based on a thorough understanding of its characteristics. Given the current situation, there are risks that the university must prevent, including the potential for personal information leaks, unintended invasions of privacy, and disruptions to the learning process.
Universities are places to pursue learning and seek the truth. In today’s world, which is overflowing with all kinds of information, students are expected to think on their own about what they want to learn and/or research and then collaborate with others to make a decision. As we see it, the recent rapid rise of generative AI poses questions about the very nature of university education and learning. Therefore, the process of examining and scrutinizing the content output by generative AI and verifying the validity and appropriateness of that information beyond just performing conventional literature reviews and online searches is essential. Ritsumeikan University will strive to foster this kind of AI literacy and cultivate students to be agents who can continue to learn while making appropriate use of new technologies.
Given the nature of technological advances, it is not realistic to completely ban the use of generative AI. Therefore, with regard to the use of generative AI, we will inform students and faculty members about the precautions and other points to keep in mind from the standpoint of education and learning, and we will cooperate with the Center for Teaching and Learning to provide students and faculty members with support and information as needed, including proposing classroom practices and educational models that can be used as a form of educational faculty development (FD)*.
*FD: At Ritsumeikan University, the Center for Teaching and Learning plays a central role in FD to systematically improve and enhance teaching content and methods.