Actua Publishes AI Education Handbook to Bring AI Into Canadian Classrooms

January 24, 2020

Today marked the release of Actua’s AI Education Handbook, an accessible learning tool on the basics of artificial intelligence to help educators bring AI learning into classrooms across Canada.

Available to everyone online, Actua’s AI Education Handbook is part of Actua’s AI Project, an initiative supported by Google.org and the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) to develop an AI curriculum for Canadian high-school students from coast to coast to coast.

Actua’s AI handbook supports pre-service and classroom teachers in bringing AI concepts and activities into the classroom. The handbook will teach you everything you need to know about AI fundamentals.

AI Handbook:

Actua’s Artificial Intelligence Education Handbook

“Our ultimate goal is to contribute to the development of a strong AI training ecosystem in Canada,” said Jennifer Flanagan, President and CEO, Actua. “Youth interact with AI on a daily basis, but don’t yet have exposure to AI concepts in school. This new initiative will help to change that and prepare youth for the jobs of today and tomorrow where, they need foundational digital skills, which now includes understanding and applying AI.”

The handbook was created with a team of leading AI experts including Natacha Mainville, Senior Research Program Manager, Google AI, who was there to celebrate the launch of the handbook at Actua’s National Conference in Ottawa. 

“Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful – AI is helping us to do that in exciting new ways,” said Natacha Mainville, Google Brain. “The potential of AI will be determined by the next generation of technology builders. Actua’s AI Education Handbook is a step in the right direction to equip educators and learners on the AI opportunity, and how it can solve for humanity’s biggest challenges.”

Actua’s AI Education Handbook content was piloted at 12 of Actua’s network member programs across the country throughout 2019, and is released in conjunction with Actua’s Teacher Training being delivered across Canada. To support classroom instruction, Actua has also developed a suite of  AI activities for youth being released online throughout 2020.

“Digital literacy skills are more important than ever for young people. Schools are where this learning starts, which is why providing accessible lesson plans for teachers is critical,” said David Fowler, Vice President Marketing and Communications, CIRA. “We’re proud to support Actua’s Handbook that will help equip high school students with real-life applications of AI they can use in their everyday life and in their future careers.”

About Actua

Actua is Canada’s largest  science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) youth outreach network representing 40 university and college based members. Each year, Actua’s growing network of member organizations reach over 300,000 young Canadians in 500 communities nationwide. Actua focuses on the engagement of underrepresented youth through specialized programs for Indigenous youth, girls and young women, at-risk youth and youth living in Northern and remote communities. Its national InSTEM program reaches over 35,000 Indigenous youth per year in over 200 Indigenous communities. Actua’s major funding partners include: Government of Canada, Google Canada, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, RBC Foundation, Suncor Energy Foundation, TD Bank Group, Microsoft Canada, Finning Canada, Imperial, Toyota Canada Foundation, GE Canada, Mastercard, CIRA and Lockheed Martin Canada. For more information about Actua, visit actua.ca.

Contact Information

Kristina Martin

Director of Communications, Actua 
111 Murray Street, Ottawa ON K1N 5M5
Office: (613) 234-4137
E­mail: kristina.martin@actua.ca 
Web: www.actua.ca