Sal Khan's Opinion About AI in Education | New York Times (5/3/23)

"Khan and his team used GPT-4 as the engine behind software called Khanmigo (“Khan” plus “amigo” — a little goofy).

Khanmigo isn’t supposed to give away answers. Like a good flesh-and-blood tutor, it engages students in a Socratic dialogue to guide them. It’s good at figuring out what they aren’t getting. Plus, Khan said, “it lets students do things you could never do before, like talk to literary or historical characters.” He chuckled about one girl who had a conversation with an A.I. incarnation of Jay Gatsby. The experience was so real to her that when she finished she apologized for taking so much of the character’s time. For safety, all interactions with students are recorded and shared with parents and teachers."

Image Credit: Getty Images, NYT

Who hasn’t heard of Sal Khan, the legendary figure who created Khan Academy, and online resource for education and students everywhere? I certainly remember my days in high school, answering for mastery points, competing with my brother for sun badges, sighing when I met the Oh Noes sprite for the 80th time when coding.

It is certainly interesting to see what Sal has to say about the advent of AI and education. Khan has collaborated with OpenAI to use the GPT-4 language model to create Khanmigo, an A.I. tutor designed to guide students through Socratic dialogue rather than give away answers. The system is being tested in Newark, N.J., the School City of Hobart in Indiana, a charter school in Phoenix, and Mountain View, Calif. Although Khanmigo is not perfect, Khan believes that it offers students a level of interaction and engagement that traditional tutoring cannot provide.

It is another perspective that counters the traditional fears that teachers and professors have against the misuse of ChatGPT for writing essays and the latter.