Robotics and artificial intelligence technologies are being extensively used in all industries, whether it is in areas of manufacturing or even in performing complex medical procedures. In many European countries governments are forming policies for citizens, asking them to retire from their jobs so that the entire factories can be automated. Process automation brings a level of safety and precision, reduces scope for human error, speeds the process and is cost effective. With the impetus being given to the field, many schools worldwide are beginning to offer robotics courses to students.
A robot is a mechanical device that is programmed to follow pre-set instructions. It has a processing unit, sensors, motors, and actuators to move its various parts. A robot may speak, make sound, or use lights and colors to give responses to its environment and instructions.
Students learn subjects related with programming robots well. There are basic to sophisticated robotics tools on the internet from which students can learn to build their own robots and learn the subject of robotics with structured lesson plans. A course in robotics will formally lead a student towards a career in robotics engineering and their field is integrated with subjects such as mechanical engineering, computer science, electrical engineering, and psychology. Even if one isn’t headed for a career in robotics, having a working knowledge of the field will help in adopting robotic and AI tools in ones professionally easily.
Why must robotics be taught in school?
- Children enjoy it
Children enjoy anything related to robots and they will certainly enjoy a subject where they can learn to build their own robot. There are several competitions in different age groups to pick their interest. The two most engaging ways teachers find for introducing information technology subject to students is through robotics and computer game design.
- It is a means for introducing students to programming
Through robotics, students can learn a nuanced and abstract subject like programming in an engaging manner. By building a robot as solution for a problem and observing its strengths and limitations, they will learn how to programme technologies to follow precise instructions. Robotics helps in meeting a growing demand for introducing students to subjects in science, engineering, and mathematical applications at school level. Through robotics students will learn how to link these different disciplines to create functional solutions.
- Helps people understand complex technologies
Robots have been in the media and fascinated generations of children since the late 20th century. In the 21st century, the application of robotics and artificial intelligence has matured and there is an urgent call for proper regulation and governance for their ethical use. There are already reports urging United Nations to ban use of drones and killer robots. By teaching students from a young age about robotics and the ethics behind using the technology, the future generation may be expected to apply their knowledge for responsible development. Also, it will help students understand the limitations of machines and how they can be applied for various tasks.
- It is a skill training programme
As the technologies develop, there will be more need for skilled professionals for programming mechanical devices. The drone industry is already growing by leaps and bounds with more than 15,000 drones being sold each month in the USA. In fact, Amazon.com has already started its drone delivery services in many parts of the country. drones are also being used in numerous industries including the median and entertainment industry, defense industry, construction industry and also for DIY projects of individuals. Robotics programming is a practical skill that students can apply in any field they choose to work in. Whether they become doctors, technicians, engineering professionals, they will use subjects on coding and programming as they work and engage with computer-based technologies for their job.
Core subjects for robotics students
The core subjects that students must study at high school level for robotics are mathematics and physics. A good grasp of Algebra and Geometry is essential for all subjects of robotics. Physics provides foundational knowledge in energy, electrical circuits, mechanics, material science, and other robotics topics. Other useful subjects are computing and programming, design and technology and specific engineering disciplines.