ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE RELATED TO EDUCATION AS SEEN BY THE EUROPEAN UNION

M. Silva , D. Alves, M.J. Ferreira

Portucalense University (PORTUGAL)
Each year, the Commission presents the Digitality indices of the Economy and Society (IDES) and Portugal appears relatively well-positioned compared to the European average. However, will this indication be enough to educate new generations regarding the desired digital transformation?.

More than 80% of young people in Europe use the internet for social activities, but on the other hand, the lack of knowledge about fundamental rights and the exercise of citizenship is still worrying. European and national citizenship are not fully exercised and we are already moving towards the construction of a new digital citizenship with new associated rights. What makes you question whether education is achieving its ends?.

As new technologies, how could the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) be aimed at guaranteeing the educational process towards a better use of democracy in EU?
The literature presents several definitions of AI; according to the British one, AI can be defined as "the ability of a digital computer or computer-controlled robot to perform tasks normally associated with intelligent beings". And, it is in this context, the use of AI goes through the most varied fields of action ranging from society in general to areas such as medicine, production, and education.

In the education area, the object of this study, AI, is used for several purposes:
(i) institutional use -
(1) marketing to prospective students,
(2) calculating class sizes,
(3) planning curricula, and
(4) allocating resources such as financial aid and facilities.
(ii) Student support -
(1) help in automatically scheduling their course load,
(2) recommendation of courses, majors and career paths (such recommendations are based on how students with similar data profiles performed in the past,
(3) just-in-time financial help (Educational institutions can use data on students to provide them with microloans or advances at the last minute of payment if they need the money to, for example, reach the end of the semester and not drop out.
(iii) Preventing dropout through predictive analytics by providing early warnings by analyzing a wide range of data, e.g., academic, non-academic, and operational data.
(iv) And, the last but not the least, educational institutions already apply IA in training/teaching, using IA-based software systems that respond to the pace and progress of individual students.

The system evaluates students' progress and recommends, or automatically delivers, specific parts of a course for students to review and/or additional resources to consult. However, in this context, although AI-based systems can successfully help the presented activities, some cautions and issues arise, namely student autonomy and privacy.

This study intends to take a look into the legislative and preparatory documents and cases presented in the literature that enshrine the issue of digital education and the use of Artificial Intelligence. For this, an integrative literature review will be used. From a theoretical and academic perspective, it is consolidated through the systematic and methodologically selected normative interpretation of national and international legal texts and the law of the European Union.

Without presenting quantitative data, the intention is to bring to the discussion and debate the contribution of Artificial Intelligence in digital education as framed in the legislative intentions of the EU.