Project Profile

Empowering Future Teachers with Generative AI Education: Understanding Applications, Risks, and Limits


Generative artificial intelligence (AI) tools have the potential to reshape education and may change teaching practices in K-12. As such, teachers must prepare students to have the necessary skills that will allow them to learn about these tools and use them productively for their lives and education. This project will pilot a curriculum with new educational methods in preparing pre-service teachers in understanding the fundamentals of generative AI and its potential teaching applications. This includes helping them develop the critical thinking skills to effectively judge generative AI's limitations and affordances in relation to classroom implementation. This proposal was received in response to the Dear Colleague Letter (DCL): Rapidly Accelerating Research on Artificial Intelligence in K-12 Education in Formal and Informal Settings (NSF 23-097), and funded by the Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (ITEST) program, which supports projects that build understandings of practices, program elements, contexts processes contributing to increasing students' knowledge and interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and information and communication technology (ICT) careers.

The project will examine the impact of the piloting curriculum on developing pre-service teachers' competencies including knowledge, skills, and attitudes in using generative AI. The research will be guided by two research questions: 1) How does the implementation of the curriculum impact pre-service teachers' knowledge and attitudes to use generative AI tools to support classroom instruction?; 2) What role do pre-service teachers see for generative AI tools in supporting teaching and learning, including its limitations and risks? Using a mixed-methods approach, researchers will investigate whether and how pre-service teachers leverage generative AI tools in their own learning and preparation for future teaching. At the conclusion of the project, research findings and open-source curriculum materials will be widely disseminated for other teacher education faculty to adapt for their own coursework.

This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.


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Principal Investigator(s)


Award Number
Project Duration
2023 - 2024
Michigan State University, MI
Project Status