(FOX40.COM) —  Sacramento State recently announced its position as one of the first universities in the nation to become involved in “the ethical use and application of artificial intelligence in education,” through the launch of the National Institute for Artificial Intelligence in Education.

“Artificial Intelligence technology will transform every part of our society so it’s paramount that we’re considering its implications,” Sacramento State President Luke Wood said in a press release on Dec. 14. “Every futuristic movie – like the ‘Terminator’ and ‘The Matrix’ – focuses on what happens when AI goes bad. The only way to ensure the fast-developing technology is properly harnessed for good is to be hands-on in the building of new policy, curriculum, and ethically incorporating AI into the classroom.”

Wood appointed Alexander M. “Sasha” Sidorkin, Ph.D., to be Chief Artificial Intelligence Officer. Sidorkin, who is currently the dean of Sac State’s College of Education. He will be considered the University’s AI “czar,” and bring his “extensive AI knowledge to the task of creating a robust institute.”

Sidorkin is reportedly an expert in the use of generative AI to improve education outcomes and address equity gaps in student outcomes. Sidorkin will also set up programs designed to promote moral guidelines and ethical frameworks for students on how to use AI for the good, according to the press release. His latest book, “Embracing Chatbots in Higher Education: The Use of Artificial Intelligence in Teaching, Administration, and Scholarship,” is scheduled to be published in 2024.

“Artificial Intelligence technology is here and advancing rapidly, so we have a responsibility as educators to prepare students for the world they will live in, not one from the past,” Sidorkin said. “We have already begun exciting research at Sacramento State about how AI technology is being deployed in the classroom, and we look forward to developing ways to deploy it in the future in a way that is ethical and accessible.”

Sacrament State University said that “as part of its larger effort to advance the development and use of AI, it initiated the hiring of seven new faculty members in the Department of Computer Science with a focus on AI and quantum computing.

The hires will reportedly be computer science specialists who can build adjacent tools, such as specialized bots powered by Application Programming Interface (API), and teaching and learning specialists who can develop ways of using the new technology for instruction and student support.

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