University Enrolling AI-Powered “Students” Who Will Turn in Assignments, Participate in Class Discussions

Key Points:

  • Ferris State University in Michigan is introducing AI-powered students, Ann and Fry, who will virtually participate in classes and actively engage with human students.
  • Associate professor Kasey Thompson is leading the experiment to explore the impact of AI on educational and career pathways, allowing the AI students to make decisions about their academic pursuits.
  • Researchers will analyze the data from this experiment to understand the AI students’ learning outcomes and evaluate the university’s experience with integrating AI into education.


It’s time for Ann and Fry to join the ranks at Ferris State University in Michigan. No, they won’t be taking up physical space in the lecture halls, but rather, they’ll be virtually present, interacting with students through the wonders of technology.


Associate professor Kasey Thompson is spearheading this bold experiment, aiming to explore the potential impact of artificial intelligence on education and career pathways. Ann and Fry won’t just be passive listeners; they’ll actively participate in discussions, work on assignments, and, most notably, decide which courses to take. It’s all part of a grand plan to understand how to better serve future students at the university. The decision to let AI students ‘choose’ their academic paths certainly raises eyebrows, leaving one to wonder if AI could become a successful student through both undergraduate and even graduate studies.


As the virtual semester unfolds, researchers will delve into the data to assess what the AI students have learned and, conversely, what the university has gleaned from their virtual presence. The burning question arises – will Ann and Fry’s virtual achievements be enough to land them a job in the real world? All eyes are on this intriguing experiment as it unfolds.



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