Our position statement on artificial intelligence

Artificial intelligence systems are becoming more advanced. In 2023, the open availability of generative AI tools, which can generate text-based and visual outputs in response to user criteria, has prompted widespread interest and debate. These tools may have significant potential to influence how we live our lives, including how we learn, work and interact with the world around us.  

We are positive about the potential benefits that AI systems and tools could bring to teaching, learning and assessment. We can also see that they present challenges to how we assess learners fairly on their knowledge and skills, and we want to ensure that the authenticity of learners’ responses, and therefore the integrity of assessments, is protected. 

We have identified potential challenges and opportunities presented by AI tools in four broad areas relating to qualifications and assessments taken by learners in Wales: 

  • the ways in which teaching and learning related to qualification content will be delivered 
  • how awarding bodies design and deliver qualifications and assessments 
  • where candidates take their assessments and the levels of control needed to ensure the authenticity of assessment evidence 
  • the knowledge, skills and experiences contained within qualifications

We want awarding bodies to design and deliver innovative qualifications that offer learners in Wales positive and relevant experiences of assessment. As our work to reform qualifications continues, we will work closely with awarding bodies as they seek to make the best use of new technologies and ensure that learners are protected. We are also liaising with Welsh Government and other qualification regulators across the UK as we develop our understanding of the opportunities in this exciting new area.  

Actions that have been taken so far 

Awarding bodies are actively considering a range of artificial intelligence tools as they emerge and develop.  

In response to the emergence of new generative artificial intelligence tools and services, the Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) took a range of actions to support fairness for learners taking assessments from summer 2023.   

We discussed relevant risks in relation to Made-for-Wales qualifications with WJEC. WJEC’s work in this area provides an example of actions that have been taken so far, including: 

  • producing guidance for its moderators to support the detection of potential malpractice, including indicators that artificial intelligence tools might have been used 
  • considered the different risks for its non-examination assessments 
  • explored how the suspected use of unpermitted artificial intelligence systems would be investigated and the proof that would be required 
  • using anti-AI software to support the identification of potential instances of using software to detect plagiarism, including content generated by artificial intelligence 

In May 2023, JCQ published guidance for centres in relation to identifying risks linked to the use of artificial intelligence tools. JCQ will also update this guidance and develop further supporting guidance in the future, such as guidance for learners promoting good practice in the use of AI tools. 

WJEC agree that longer-term actions and systems need to be implemented to detect malpractice linked to artificial intelligence tools. We will work actively with WJEC to consider this during the development of new qualifications in our Qualified for the Future project.  

We look forward to working closely with awarding bodies and learning providers to consider actions which may be taken relating to general and vocational qualifications.