Some universities in the United States use a complex tracking system for their students to capture their behavior changes, in a social engineering application.
In addition, all universities use the SpotterEDU application that connects to students’ smartphones to increase their “points of attendance,” according to The Washington Post.
Syracuse University professor Jeff Rubin said students “want those points.”
“They know I’m watching and acting on it. So, in terms of behavior, they change,” Rubin said, showing definite power over the actions of students under his watch.
For some students, being tracked is not acceptable.
“We’re adults. Do we really need to be tracked?” protested Robby Pfeifer, a sophomore at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, according to The Washington Post.
“Why is this necessary?, How does this benefit us? … And is it going to continue to progress until we are micromanaged every second of the day?” he argued angrily and worried about his future, during the same interview.
The use of surveillance systems makes it possible to monitor students’ academic performance, analyze their behavior or evaluate their mental health.
On the other hand, some teachers and education advocates consider this technology intrusive and violating students’ privacy on a massive scale.
“Graduates will be well prepared … to embrace 24/7 government monitoring and social credit systems,” one Internet user warned, according to The Washington Post.
One wireless company said it gets up to 6,000 location data points per student every day, from the dormitory to the desk.
In addition, schools use an initiative called Degree Analytics, which uses WiFi to track and trace nearly 200,000 students at 19 state universities.
Erin Rose Glass, a digital scholarship librarian at the University of California, San Diego, is critical to this tracking.
“It embodies a very cynical view of education, that it’s something we need to enforce on students, almost against their will,” Glass said.
Along with the increased use of facial recognition supported by artificial intelligence, resistance to it has also increased.
Meanwhile, Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) introduced a bill in late November that bans the use of facial recognition technology in public housing, according to The Hill.
Japanese scientists have also produced special glasses designed to fool the technology.
Similarly, some public campaigns have opposed commercial uses, from Ticket-master, which uses facial recognition for concert tickets, to JetBlue for boarding passes, according to Time.