Kenneth Rogers


Blog Post created by Kenneth Rogers Employee on Jul 31, 2017

I loved attending Hilary Scharton's session on how Instructure is approaching artificial intelligence and how this can impact education (the official session title was "The Canvas of the Future - Artificial Intelligence & Behavioral Economics).


Hilary set the vibe for us by rocking some totally sweet 60's era feeling James Bond music before she kicked things off. Then she started off by pointing out that everything is predictable. The sun will rise and set. Kitties and bunnies will always get an "awwwww" response. And a hot pocket will always burn the crap out of your mouth.


The premise of what she (and in turn Instructure/Canvas) are doing is based on a book. Nudge focuses on improving decisions about health, wealth, and happiness. We can start to look at how we make decisions and more importantly how can we make better decisions. But, unfortunately, no one is nudging in academia and there are no educational platforms for nudging. But Canvas ran a small pilot program and found that nudging works - if you do it.


Canvas nudged 18,000 students on 25,000 assignments that were late, but not closed. These students received a text or a push notification from the mobile app nudging them to complete the assignments. Only 6% opted out of receiving the notifications (but this means 94% opted in), and over time there was a drop in how late assignments were. I don't remember the drop in K12, but in HE, the average late assignment went from one day to one half of a day.


So, what's next for the nudge project??


Hilary is wanting to replicate the smaller test in a larger test. Canvas has created a course level LTI that instructors can enable for a wider level testing. Ultimately, what Hilary is seeking is to have peer reviewed journal-able quality data and analysis so faculty will want this LTI enabled for their students. It is time for artificial intelligence to have a place in education as a benefit to the student.


*Note: If I missed any important information from this presentation, please add to the comments below!