AI skills will determine students' future success.

Here’s why AI skills will make or break students’ futures

If students are going to tackle the jobs of tomorrow, they need AI skills today

It’s OK if you don’t know exactly what artificial intelligence (AI) is–but you need to learn, and quickly, because it’s already firmly ensconced in our lives, and AI skills are shaping the future lives and careers of today’s students.

AI has already fundamentally changed the way we “do” many things. For instance, most people talk about how the internet destroyed the entire chain of brick-and-mortar Blockbuster stores with Netflix, but this assessment isn’t exactly true–AI was behind that transformation.

“We talk about AI as if it’s coming,” but in fact, it’s already here, and it’s been here, said Joseph South, ISTE’s chief learning officer, presenting with ISTE CEO Richard Culatta during a CoSN 2019 session. “It’s not hype to say we’re behind the curve–we are behind the curve on this, in terms of preparing students for AI.”

Read more: 3 ways districts can use AI and AR

When we talk about AI, we’re talking about computer systems that demonstrate behaviors associated with human intelligence–the ability to plan, reasoning, learning, the ability to adapt, and social intelligence, to name a few. And because AI can demonstrate these behaviors and learn, it is poised to have a tremendous impact on the future of work.

“How does this impact jobs? Forty-seven percent of jobs are at threat of AI,” South said. “This means that 47 percent of jobs as we define them today are going to change.” Those jobs may not be eliminated, but they will definitely change.

Laura Ascione

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