Teachers are using AI to mark homework, government report finds

Image of child holding up paper with number 0 and 1 repeated all over, and with smiley face yellow sticker
Up to £2 million is being invested to create new teaching tools using AI

Teachers are using artificial intelligence to write letters to parents and mark homework, according to a government report.

A call to provide evidence about AI in education found that teachers were using the technology to save time by automating tasks.

Generative AI tools, which include ChatGPT, have been used to write letters and emails to staff, pupils and their families, the report found.

Teachers are also using the technology to produce content for newsletters and write social media posts.

Some teachers said they were experimenting with using generative AI to automate marking and to generate feedback on students’ work.

In one response, a college said it had developed its own assessment and feedback platform using generative AI technology.

However, one exam board said it had tested the marking performance of multiple AI platforms and found that none was sufficiently accurate.

Teachers said they had used the tools in lessons to explain a complicated concept or idea and to generate good writing examples.

The call to evidence received a total of 567 responses, including from schools, colleges and universities.

‘Artificial intelligence is here to stay’

The Department for Education said the report would inform future policy on AI.

Gillian Keegan, the Education Secretary, said: “Artificial intelligence is here to stay and it’s already changing the way we work and learn. To take advantage of this transformative technology, it’s crucial we get our approach to it right.”

She said: “The results of the call for evidence give us a crucial evidence base to inform our future work on AI, helping us make the right decisions to get the best out of generative AI in a safe and secure way.”

In October, the Government announced an investment of up to £2 million in Oak National Academy, a Government-sponsored organisation, to create new teaching tools using AI.

Mrs Keegan has previously said that AI could “have the power to transform a teacher’s day-to-day work” and “take much of the heavy lifting out of compiling lesson plans and marking”.

Morgan Briggs, a policy research and strategy manager at the Turing Institute said: “There are multiple ways in which generative AI could benefit the sector – but simultaneously, there are concerns and risks that must be addressed. These include dependency on commercial generative AI, the possible infringement of rights, the spread of bias and misinformation, and plagiarism.

“To realise the full potential of these tools, it will be crucial to engage children and young people in the development and deployment of generative AI in education.”

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