Microsoft teams up with Code.org to teach students how AI works

Microsoft and Code.org, a nonprofit group that aims to advance the study of computer science among students, have joined forces to teach artificial intelligence ethics to elementary and high school students. As part of that partnership, Microsoft has recently donated $7.5 million to fund the initiative.

In a joint blog post, Code.org CEO Hadi Partovi and Microsoft President Brad Smith said the goal of the alliance is to impart lessons about the social and ethical implications of AI to students using "a comprehensive and age-appropriate approach". That effort will kick off today with a video series, where Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and other technologists across industry and academia will talk about AI.

In addition, the team will launch a tutorial called AI for Oceans worldwide on mobile devices, available in more than 25 languages. The alliance will also provide a classroom lesson plan to provide students some insights into "the societal and ethical implications of AI" as well as a CS Principles curriculum lesson that tackles machine learning and bias.

Next year, Code.org plans to incorporate AI and machine learning lessons into its CS Discoveries computer science curriculum for grades 6 to 10 students. These courses will also be integrated into the organization's App Lab, a platform designed to help middle school and high school students develop apps.

In addition to Code.org's resources, educational AI materials from outside sources will be available to students and teachers as part of the partnership. Over the long term, it aims to "democratize access to learning AI".

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