The lecture on the topic “Contemporary university in the time of artificial intelligence” was held by Full Prof. Blaženka Divjak, Ph.D., from the Faculty of Organization and Informatics, University of Zagreb on Thursday, June 9, 2022, at the University of Slavonski Brod. Please find the summary below.
We live in a time of the 4th industrial revolution which is based on new technologies and artificial intelligence that process huge amounts of data. A major change in the labor market needs was predicted and already being noticed. However, both daily life and society are changing under the influence of major societal challenges (such as climate change, migration) and technological advances. All this requires the development of skills for living and working in the 21st century, such as critical thinking, problem-solving, informed decision-making, social skills of living and working in a multicultural environment, and acceptance of diversity. There is also a need to develop new literacy, such as data, information, algorithm, and science literacy, which should be a necessary complement to language, mathematics, and science literacy. In addition to all this, the use of technology and artificial intelligence requires an understanding of what is "talking to us out of the black box", interpretation of results with the application of clear ethical standards and data protection, as well as ensuring equal access.
Lifelong learning is becoming a necessity, and opportunities for learning through technology and artificial intelligence are all around us. Many of these options are more accessible (e.g., Duolingo for language learning), more interesting (e.g., Khan Academy for understanding mathematics), more applicable (e.g., industry certificates), or more focused (e.g., MOOCs on Coursera) than what can be obtained at universities.
It is therefore justified to ask the following questions:
How should the universities deal with these challenges? How to wisely take advantage of technology and artificial intelligence in learning and teaching? How to prepare students taking into account human access, human rights, and sustainable development while working in complex business and social systems? Why does university teacher need modern teaching competencies today? How do EU projects help us develop?