Myths, Mis- and Preconceptions of Artificial Intelligence: A Review of the Literature

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is prevalent in nearly every aspect of our lives. However, recent studies have found a significant amount of confusion and misunderstanding surrounding AI. To develop effective educational programs in the field of AI, it is vital to examine and understand learners' pre- and misconceptions as well as myths about AI. This study examined a corpus of 591 studies. 25 relevant studies were identified by applying the following eligibility criteria: English-written original empirical research on education and AI and reporting AI conceptions in a formal learning context. The review found studies from six continents, with the majority conducted in Europe and North America. The studies predominantly focus on the school and university levels. Findings reveal a range of preconceptions, misconceptions, and myths about AI, such as: Learners often have limited understanding of AI on a technical level. They tend to attribute human-like characteristics or attributes to AI systems and may have narrow views of AI's scope, capabilities, and limitations. The review also shows that learners often have binary and unspecific views about the threats, dangers, and benefits of AI. Effective educational programs are key to empower learners' understanding of AI, thus helping them make informed decisions about the integration of AI in our society, rather than being swayed by misinformation and unnecessary fear. This review may help inform the development of more effective teaching and outreach strategies in AI education.

Bewersdorff, A., Zhai, X., Roberts, J., & Nerdel, C. (2023). Myths, mis- and preconceptions of artificial intelligence: A review of the literature. Computers and Education: Artificial Intelligence, 4.