Kenyan students leading in AI use, survey says

Wednesday November 22 2023

Students using their laptops during a study session at Moringa Coding School in Nairobi, Kenya. PHOTO | POOL


A new survey by has found that Kenyan students are eager to embrace artificial intelligence (AI) in their education.

The survey, which polled over 11,000 post-secondary students aged 18-21 years across 15 countries, including 510 students in Kenya, found that nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of Kenyan students have used generative AI (GenAI) for their college or university studies.

This is the highest percentage of any country surveyed.

However, while Kenyan students appear to view GenAI as a helpful learning support tool, they still see room for improvement.

Read: AI in business: The opportunities and challenges

For example, 48 percent of all those surveyed called for the involvement of human expertise in generating answers.


At the same time, over a third (39 percent) of the 63 percent who say they have used GenAI in their studies are concerned about receiving incorrect or inaccurate information.

The survey also showed that the vast majority (94 percent) of Kenya students polled believe their education is preparing them well for the job market, the highest of any country surveyed, and up from 80 percent in 2022.

Similarly, 81 percent of Kenyan students say their degree will be equally or more useful in an AI-assisted workplace – the highest after Canada and Saudi Arabia (both 79 percent).

The survey also highlights Kenyan students’ desire for lower tuition fees: 84 percent of students surveyed said that they would prefer their university/college degree to take shorter time to complete if it was cheaper, the highest out of all the countries alongside Malaysia (84 percent).

 A majority (78 percent) also said they would like the choice of more online learning if it meant lower tuition fees.

Read: AKINYEMI: Keep balance between AI tech and humanity

“By elevating the voices of students and listening to their concerns, we can gain profound insights into how to support them. Crucially, as we enter this new age of AI, we will better understand how to harness the full potential of this technology, enabling students to learn how they want, what they want, when they want, and in their preferred format – which will ultimately help them on their lifelong learning journey,” said Heather Hatlo Porter, Head of and Chief Communications Officer of Chegg Inc.

“Our Global Student Survey also shows that students around the world are stressed, lack sleep, and have trouble meeting new friends. There is a pressing need for robust mental health support, so learners can make the most of their education and face the future with confidence.”

The survey results also show that an overwhelming majority of Kenyan students (89 percent), all things considered, feel happy – the second highest after Indonesia (90 percent) and up from 75 percent in 2022. Moreover, 80 percent of Kenyans polled say they feel optimistic.

However, the survey showed that Kenyan students face a number of mental health challenges, most notably academic burnout (41 percent), experiencing daily feelings of anxiety (37 percent) and not sleeping enough (35 percent). Still, they ranked relatively low compared to other countries surveyed.