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Thailand Gets ASEAN’s First AI Robot Teacher

Asean First AI Robot Teacher
Image Credits: Asia One, News Article

Schoolchildren in Thailand will soon benefit from artificial intelligence in the classroom, according to the Minister of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation.

The Minister announced that the “Coding at School Powered by KidBright” project has already delivered 200,000 AI teaching kits to high schools and colleges nationwide. He was speaking at the KidBright Developer Conference 2019 (KDC19) on 27 November 2019.

The project is a collaboration between the National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA) and the National Electronics and Computer Technology Center (NECTEC), and is designed to teach coding and programming to students to familiarise them with artificial intelligence technology.

The project also further expands the ‘Coding at School for Teacher‘ or ‘KruKid Contest’ initiative which aims to boost teachers’ abilities in teaching coding and AI-related topics.

The ‘KidBright AIBot’, ASEAN’s first robot that combines the teaching of block coding and AI technology, was also introduced at the conference.

This robot is the first step towards the Ministry’s policy to promote Thailand as an AI nation. Simplifying the AI subjects to improve students’ understanding and visualization will help boost efficiency in producing personnel equipped with skills in AI technology, as well as creating a platform for AI entrepreneurs to develop their products with added economic value and variety of applications.

NSTDA president stated that the KidBright project is having a positive effect on several industrial sectors.

In 2019 the project stimulated the manufacturing of AI circuit boards with more than 10,000 components, and has generated products for AI teaching kits such as IKB-1, GoGo Bright and KB-IDE. Moreover, two business organisations have already applied to use KidBright boards for commercial use.

KKU and Japan Partnering to Transform Education Via AI

Khon Kaen University and University of Tsukuba have been collaborating academically for over 15 years. This collaboration has extended to the fields of medicine, agriculture, humanities, and pharmaceutical sciences.

It was a university conducting internationally recognized research, especially in AI for health care, that is, an electric robot converting energy from human’s movement to support the movement of elderly people.

Moreover, University of Tsukuba proposed AI for Education Project for the year 2019-2021, and 20 APEC countries also participated in this project. It had been expected that this meeting could develop Thailand’s education further.

Students these days needed to learn in 2 aspects consisting of real life and academic context in which mathematics is the significant fundamental knowledge. In developed countries, secondary students would be prepared to get familiar with AI in every subject. There were AI system designing scheme and e-learning as an academic database. Knowledge acquired in college therefore led to the development of goods and innovation in the future.

AI technology in Japan had been widely utilized in the fields of medicine and tourism business. Over 98.7 % of reception tasks were performed by AI. Thus, there is a need to find jobs that only humans can do and these jobs usually involve empathy and emotion.

When AI was introduced to academic field in Japan, it took university admission examination and ranked 64th. It was found that for some questions, humans provided incorrect answers while AI could answer them easily. This rapid development inspired the Thai and Japanese governments to work together.

Collaboration with KKU included developing an AI curriculum for primary and secondary students, a workshop for robot tools utilization, and training in computing science – all of which are future trends.

If AI is used for education it can help teachers with time consuming tasks – checking homework, evaluating essays, giving advice to students, manage and categorize documents, designing curriculum by using audio and video, and enabling video conference. It has been predicted that AI may be a virtual teacher in the future.

It is evident that Thailand has realised the value and necessity of AI in academia and education. Moreover, it enthusiastic embracing of the technology bodes well for its economy and its Thailand 4.0 plans.

OpenGov Academy

In line with smart nation efforts of encouraging AI technology adoption, OpenGov has launched its OpenGov Academy, in collaboration with AlphaZetta.

The OpenGov Academy facilitates and promotes AI masterclasses, workshops and customised courses that are conducted by AlphaZetta and supported by OpenGov.

This academy will feature masterclasses across various levels: C-suite, management, business, and, expert.

The classes have been created to impart understanding – taught in an intuitive, accessible way, keeping formulae and mathematics to a bare minimum and taking an innate, visual approach.

Data literacy, AI and data science, and strategic decision making with data are some of the classes offered by the academy.

For more information, visit: OpenGov Academy

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