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Qual-AI-ty Engagement project meeting in Brussels

Last April 5th 2023, the Qual-AI-ty Engagement project successfully hosted a groundbreaking event in Brussels titled “Leveraging Artificial Intelligence to Innovate Higher Education: Opportunities and Threats.” With over 100 participants, this event brought together leading voices in the field of higher education to discuss the impact of AI in European higher education and explore the potential of artificial intelligence to transform the landscape of education.

One of the highlights of the event was the presentation of QUALIA, an artificial intelligence-powered tool developed as part of the EU-funded project Qual-AI-ty Engagement. QUALIA collects and analyses large samples of quantitative data, providing higher education institutions (HEIs) with mechanisms to enhance their quality assurance evidence and indicators. This innovative tool has the potential to revolutionise the way HEIs approach quality assurance and the continuous improvement of the overall quality of higher education.

The event was hosted by the Representation of the State of Hessen to the EU, and featured esteemed panellists including Georgi Dimitrov, Head of Unit “Digital Education” at the European Commission; Thérèse Zhang, Deputy Director of Higher Education Policy at EUA; Sjoerd de Vries, Researcher in Digital Transformation at the University of Twente; and Elīna Gaile-Sarkane, Chair of the Senate and Dean of the Faculty of Engineering Economics and Management at RTU. Their insights and expertise provided valuable perspectives on the opportunities and challenges of leveraging AI in higher education.

The event also explored how ChatGPT, a leading language model developed by OpenAI, disrupted the traditional educational landscape. Through its natural language processing capabilities, ChatGPT is transforming the way students interact with educational content and resources, opening up new challenges and possibilities on how universities must approach the teaching and learning mission from elements such as assessment, self-learning, quality assurance, and student-educator relationships.

The discussions at the event delved into the implications of AI for assessment in higher education. There are concerns regarding bias, fairness, and ethical considerations. Panellists and participants engaged in thoughtful discussions on ensuring that the use of AI in higher education is transparent, accountable, and aligned with the principles of fairness and equity.

The event also looked ahead to the key applications that artificial intelligence will enable in the near future. From personalised learning pathways to intelligent tutoring systems, AI has the potential to revolutionise the way education is delivered and experienced. The event sparked lively discussions on ensuring that AI is used responsibly and ethically to promote equity, inclusivity, and excellence in education.

In addition to panel discussions and presentations, the event provided ample networking opportunities for stakeholders in higher education, including leaders, managers, researchers, professors, students, QA staff, policymakers, EdTech companies, and related networks and associations. The exchange of ideas, perspectives, and best practices among participants has fostered a collaborative environment to explore the transformative potential of AI in higher education.

As the event came to a close, the participants left with a renewed sense of curiosity about the future of higher education with AI. The discussions and insights shared at the event provide a rich foundation for further exploration and innovation in leveraging AI to enhance the quality, accessibility, and inclusivity of higher education.

The Qual-AI-ty Engagement project’s event was a success and brought together the key stakeholders in higher education to explore the transformative potential of AI. From the presentation of QUALIA to discussions on the implications of AI for assessment, and the future applications of AI in education, the event provided valuable insights and perspectives on the opportunities and challenges of AI in higher education.

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