The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has integrated a new Artificial Intelligence (AI) course for class XI and XII in the current academic year (2020-2021). Developed in partnership with IBM, this course will be part of CBSE's Social Empowerment through Work Education and Action (SEWA) program. It is being introduced in approximately 200 schools across 13 states in India including Delhi-NCR, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Orissa, Kerala, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Punjab.
Over the last few years, AI has gained prominence and is being used almost everywhere. This IBM AI curriculum is structured around a course framework for students consisting of base strands of knowledge (basics, history, applications), skills (design thinking, computational thinking, data fluency, critical thinking) and values (ethical decision making, bias). The course has been made robust with problem-based learning outcomes and assessment methods for teachers to build foundational skills of AI in students. The idea is to train students with the basics of AI.
"AI will certainly become all-pervasive in our lives in the coming years and it is important to inculcate the necessary skills & knowledge right from high school level. The unique proposition of the IBM AI curriculum is that it allows Grade XI & XII students from all streams, in addition to Computer Science, to build the foundation for themselves to be AI ready," says Manoj Ahuja, Chairperson, CBSE.
The IBM AI Curriculum was launched in collaboration with CBSE in September 2019 to impart AI skills to 5,000 Grade XI students and 1,000 teachers across India. Following the program launch, a series of Principal Orientation and Teacher Training sessions were conducted between September 2019 and June 2020. As part of the partnership between IBM and CBSE for the AI Curriculum, training (online and classroom) for over 5,000 students was conducted resulting in a cumulative 408 hours of training workshops.
"The question on the minds of educators and economists alike is how will technology impact jobs moving forward and how can we prepare our students to succeed in an increasingly automated, AI-driven world. The objective of our exciting collaboration with CBSE is to help address some of those challenges by designing one of the most accessible and comprehensive gateways for students to begin their AI journey. As they think through designing innovative solutions to address key problems, we also get them deliberate about the ethical implications of the technology," says Sandip Patel, General Manager, IBM India/South Asia.
This curriculum was co-developed with Australia's Macquarie University and Indian implementation partners - Learning Links Foundation and 1M1B to meet CBSE's requirements.
CBSE is India's national level board of education for public and private schools, controlled and managed by the Government of India.