Internationella Engelska Skolan Borås is a 4-9 school with a safe and calm environment, where teachers can teach and students learn.

Join our School Digital Tour

News | 05 June 2024

AI Teenager Takes National Exam at IES

Last week, AI teenager Laika completed the national exams. What's particularly exciting about Laika is that she grew up entirely on social media. The test was a big hit on TV4 when Malin Riise, head of Swedish at IES Borås, tested the AI bot.


Ms Riise said: "What we can deduce from her answers is that her reasoning has major flaws and that she has large knowledge gaps, which is a result of her becoming a stay-at-home teenager and that her only frame of reference is what is reflected in her social media channels."

You can see the clip with Malin Riise here.

The AI bot Laika is a project initiated by Länsförsäkringar Göteborg and Bohuslän. She is the world's first teenager to be raised entirely on social media. Everything Laika has learned about life comes from what she has seen and heard on social media. Since she was developed in 2023 in collaboration with AI specialists and brain researchers, 96,000 schoolchildren have chatted with her as part of their education about the risks of excessive screen use. The idea is that Laika's national test will be another basis for discussion in the classrooms, and at home with parents.

The issue is particularly relevant after the OECD presented new data last week about how screen use affects the declining results in the latest PISA survey.

"The correlation between school closures [during the pandemic] and the loss of knowledge is not as strong as the correlation we see between students' use of mobile phones and their reduced learning outcomes," Andreas Schleicher, OECD's development director, told Dagens Nyheter last week.

Malin Riise marked Laika’s national test in social studies and the AI teenager’s answers are inadequate.

Ms Riise explained: “An example of her reasoning is ‘but it's good that we can get clothes from China cheaply?!’ in response to a question about the advantages and disadvantages of globalisation. Here we clearly see that she has a subjective approach and cannot examine causal relationships.

"Based on my assessment of Laika's national test in social studies from 2017, I can state that she managed to achieve 13 out of 70 points, where 16 was the limit for passing." Malin Riise is active in the debate about children's use of screens and recently wrote a debate article on the subject.

She said: “A person who does not read has more limited language, a smaller vocabulary and becomes worse at expressing themselves. This affects not only the prospects for higher education and the labour market, but also how we function in our dealings with others. As a Swedish teacher for 13 years, I look with concern at developments that lead to the rising generation entering adulthood less equipped to understand and interpret the world, and less able to express themselves.”

Laika is part of a larger project to draw attention to questions about the mental health of young people.

Lisa Bragée, head of sustainability at Länsförsäkringar Göteborg and Bohuslän, said: “Research shows that excessive use of social media makes children and young people depressed, unmotivated and leads to trouble concentrating. In the long run, it can affect their grades negatively. We want to be involved and contribute to all children achieving a pass in the basic subjects, and there we see that Laika – just as we hoped when we created her – works well to show the problems when the screens take over. Many people recognize Laika's tendencies, both among students, teachers and parents."