Generative Artificial Intelligence in Distance Education

Alexander Mikroyannidis (The Open University, UK) has given an invited talk at an event organised by the Erasmus+ project D-ChallengHE and hosted by the Hellenic Open University. The event was attended by educators and researchers from across the D-ChallengHE consortium, i.e., Slovenia, Italy, Greece, Romania, and Lithuania. The D-ChallengHE project is building a generative network among universities, research centres, and stakeholders engaged in the digital transformation in Higher Education (HE), in order to develop a flexible approach for online and blended delivery of study programmes. The project is also developing innovative teaching-learning methodologies and tools in HE, as well as guidelines for supporting the flexibility of university policies in the design, organisation and delivery of study programmes.

In his talk, Alexander discussed the positive and negative impacts that Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI) can have in distance and higher education. Alexander presented the pedagogical use cases of Generative AI that can enhance the learning experience for students pursuing HE remotely. In particular, Alexander discussed the deployment of Generative AI as a personal tutor for empowering remote HE students with a tailored and interactive learning experience, catering to their individual needs and fostering self-regulated learning. Additionally, Alexander shared results from ongoing work within the Open University, aiming to investigate the use of Generative AI for improving the production of learning materials and for providing students with personal digital assistants.