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AI and robots in HE design fictions v25102020.pdf (293.06 kB)

AI and robots in Higher Education: Eighteen design fictions

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posted on 2020-10-25, 18:56 authored by Andrew CoxAndrew Cox

Eighteen design fictions that imagine the application of AI and robots to Higher Education (HE).

Based on a wide-ranging literature review, the fictions instantiate the possibilities and controversies around AI and robots as applied in the university context, including teaching, administration and research.

The methods used to design an earlier version of the fictions are described in the paper "The development of a collection of design fictions about Artificial Intelligence and robots in Higher Education" (

Design fictions create a speculative space in which to raise questions about whether a particular technology is desirable, the socio-cultural assumptions built into technologies, the potential for different technologies to make different worlds, our relation to technology in general, indeed our role in making the future happen in general.

They can be used in research or teaching to elicit opinions about the future application of AI and robots to HE.

The project was funded by Society of Research into Higher Education - Research Scoping Award -SA1906. As such the fictions are the property of SRHE and deposited here by permission.

The research was approved by the University of Sheffield, Information School under ethics application 032657

My thanks to Dave Cameron, Alessandro Checco, Tim Herrick and Maria Mawson for comments on an earlier version which fed into the current collection.





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