Sentenced to Prison by a Machine

Assignment Outline

 GRADES: 9-12             STANDARDS   i

Tags:

STEPS TO COMPLETION:

1. REVIEW Assignment Outline 

2. READ "Sent to Prison by a Software Program's Secret Algorithms" (New York Times, by Adam Liptak)

3. READ "Courts are using AI to sentence criminals. That must stop now" (Wired, by Jason Tashea)

4. READ "How to Upgrade Judges with Machine Learning" (MIT Technology Review, by Tom Simonite)

5. ANSWER short response questions

6. PREPARE for your class debate

7. REVIEW the Reference Shelf

CONTEXT:

In an extremely controversial case, Wisconsin v. Loomis, a machine learning algorithm was used to assist a sentencing decision. This case has triggered an impassioned debate in the legal community regarding the proper use, if any, of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning in the justice system. In response to this case and advances in technology, the US Supreme Court and its justices are beginning to contemplate AI and more generally, technology's role, in influencing law.

 

You will review three articles exploring the controversial case in Wisconsin and strong arguments for and against using artificial intelligence in the justice system. After reading the articles, you will answer short response questions and prepare for your class debate.

LEARNING GOALS:

  • Compare and contrast differing viewpoints on a topical issue at the intersection of law, technology and society.

  • Evaluate and assess merit of opposing viewpoints.

  • Actively prepare and participate in a debate expressing ideas clearly and persuasively.

STUDENTS START HERE:

Lessons are typically assigned as homework with the activity completed in class, but can be used in a flipped classroom setting.

 

Approximate assignment duration: 45-55 minutes

 

REVIEW

Assignment Outline

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

Sentenced to Prison by a Machine. 

2017 Moonshot Learning Inc.