In a remarkable testament to the rising popularity of artificial intelligence (AI) education, Coursera, the prominent U.S. edutech platform, disclosed that it attracted a new user every minute on average for its AI courses throughout 2023. The announcement, made by Coursera CEO Jeff Maggioncalda on Thursday, underlines a growing trend of individuals seeking to upskill and capitalize on the potential boom in generative AI
The Significance of Generative AI
Maggioncalda highlighted the significance of generative AI, emphasizing its broad impact on people and industries. Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, he stated, “I’d say the real hotspot is generative AI because it affects so many people.” Despite initial concerns among investors that generative AI applications might replace ed-tech firms, the opposite appears to be true. Instead, the technology has spurred increased interest in upskilling, proving advantageous for companies like Coursera.
Strategic Alliances and Enrollment Numbers
Coursera is strategically aligning itself with frontrunners in the AI race, collaborating with industry leaders such as OpenAI and Google’s DeepMind to offer AI courses. With over 800 AI courses available, the platform recorded more than 7.4 million enrollments in the previous year alone, reported Reuters.
AI Assistant and Language Accessibility
Every student on Coursera’s platform is provided access to a ChatGPT-like AI assistant called “Coach,” offering personalized tutoring. Maggioncalda revealed that the bot is constructed using large language models from OpenAI and Google’s Gemini, with no plans for Coursera to develop or train its own models. The company anticipates fine-tuning these models with proprietary data. Additionally, Coursera has leveraged AI technology to translate approximately 4,000 courses into different languages, to make education more accessible globally, reported the agency. As part of its strategic initiatives, the company plans to expand its AI team through increased hiring in the coming year.
Global Fascination with AI Technology
This surge in interest and enrollment in AI courses on Coursera echoes the broader global fascination with the technology, driven in part by the widespread adoption of generative AI, as exemplified by OpenAI’s ChatGPT.
In conclusion, the growing momentum of AI courses on Coursera is a clear indicator of the increasing demand for AI education and upskilling opportunities. With strategic alliances, personalized AI assistance, and global language accessibility, Coursera is well-positioned to continue leading the way in providing high-quality AI education to a global audience.