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Cervantes Bill to Protect Community College Faculty from Encroachment by Artificial Intelligence Signed Into Law

For immediate release:

(SACRAMENTO) – Yesterday, Assembly Bill 2370 by Assemblymember Sabrina Cervantes (D-Riverside) was signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom. By requiring that the instructor of record for community college courses must meet the minimum qualifications set by the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges to teach and serve as a faculty member, AB 2370 will ensure that our community college students are taught by qualified human faculty rather than artificial intelligence (AI).  

“While there is room for artificial intelligence to contribute to community college classrooms, human faculty remain best suited to teach our students. Assembly Bill 2370 will help provide guardrails on the integration of AI in classrooms while ensuring that community college students are taught by human faculty,” said Assemblymember Cervantes. “I want to thank the Faculty Association of California Community Colleges (FACCC) for working with me on this bill and continuing to advocate for our hardworking and irreplaceable community college faculty, as well as Governor Newsom for signing this much-needed bill into law.”

With the launch of several AI tools starting in November 2022, artificial intelligence has exhibited the ability to write essays, assist with research, and solicit feedback. The growing use of AI in educational settings has left many community college faculty concerned about the impact on their classrooms. Many institutions of higher education are exploring options to integrate artificial intelligence into their courses and curriculum, and in some instances are doing so without any boundaries. Faculty members reasonably fear that the institutions they teach at might attempt to employ AI tools to execute duties that have historically been performed by human instructors.

Assembly Bill 2370 will provide protections on the integration of AI in community college classrooms by ensuring that an instructor of record—for both credit and non-credit courses—must meet the minimum qualifications set by the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges to serve as a faculty member, librarian, or counselor. This will ensure that the instructor of record is a human being. By setting these standards only for instructors of record, the bill still permits the use of artificial intelligence as a peripheral tool to support human faculty in performing tasks like course development, grading, and tutoring.

“FACCC applauds Assemblymember Cervantes for her commitment to faculty throughout the state,” said Wendy Brill-Wynkoop, President of FACCC. “As educators continue to explore the benefits of artificial intelligence, AB 2370 provides reasonable safeguards against the displacement of faculty from our classrooms and ensures students will always have access to a qualified instructor during the course of their studies.”

Assembly Bill 2370 passed the state Assembly and state Senate without a single no vote, and will go into effect on January 1, 2025. You can find more information about AB 2370 here.