Teacher's Perspectives and Professional Development Needs to Integrate AI Tools in K-12 Sector in the UAE

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The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
Artificial intelligence (AI) has enhanced teaching and learning in all sectors of education. Learning about AI at a very young age can foster the 21st century skills of learners. There is an emerging trend to integrate AI across the K–12 curriculum. Teachers play an important role in bringing any kind of innovation to the classroom and in integrating new technologies. To address the growing trend of integrating AI in K–12, the aim of this study was to investigate teachers’ perspectives, beliefs, attitudes, and concerns for the adoption of AI tools in K–12 curriculum and their professional development training needs for the successful integration of these technologies in the K -12 classrooms. This study was theoretically anchored on Technology acceptance model (TAM), Theory of planned behavior (TPB) and Technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPACK). A mixed methods research approach was used to carry out this study. An anonymous questionnaire was used to collect quantitative data from (n= 66) K-12 teachers in the UAE, and qualitative data was collected using focus group interviews (n = 12) with high school teachers. Ten constructs, namely perceived use (PU), Perceived Ease of Use(PEOU) , Self-efficacy(SE), Anxiety, Technological pedagogical knowledge (TPK), Technological knowledge(TK), Technological content knowledge(TCK), Technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPACK), Behavior intention (BI) and ethics were measure through 7-point Likert scale in the survey. Analysis of the data revealed PU as the most significant factor predicting BI and TPACK and SE significantly predicted PU. In addition to this, TK significantly predicted Ethics. Results also revealed educators are positive and motivated to adopt AI tools, although they acknowledge the ethical implications due to the use of AI tools and demand for policies and regulations. Although teachers expressed discomfort and concerns about the use of AI, anxiety didn’t negatively predict their BI. These insights are very useful for policymakers, curriculum developers, and school leaders for planning effective teacher development programs and preservice teacher education.
teacher's perspectives, professional development, AI Tools, K-12 sector, United Arab Emirates (UAE)