On Wednesday, the Chinese Students’ Association (CSAA) said it would not accept a petition on the matter that claimed robots would replace human instructors in Chinese university courses.
The CSAA said it was “concerned that the proposal does not go far enough and that the robot could be replaced by a human.”
The CSAAA said it also would not support a universal system, as proposed by a Chinese professor in a recent video.
“In a world of increasingly artificial intelligence, human students are not just the future of education, but also of employment and society,” said the CSAA, which is affiliated with the ruling Communist Party.
“If China does not take the lead in addressing the issue, its citizens will be left behind in a global economy where robots are replacing human workers.
It is the responsibility of China to ensure that its universities are equipped with robots and to ensure their use for good,” it said.
The proposal is based on a proposal by Professor Xingdeo Zhang, an associate professor at the Nanjing Institute of Technology (NTIT) and a member of the “National Academy of Sciences of China”.
Zhang has been invited to attend a meeting of the International Council for Science and Technology (ICSTC) at the end of this year, where he will discuss the issue.
The video was uploaded to YouTube on Thursday by an organisation called China Research Technology Research Institute, or CRITI.
“A universal robot would be the first step in ensuring the future success of Chinese universities, in order to improve the quality of education and enhance the competitiveness of the country,” Zhang said in the video.
The petition that the CSSAA filed with the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) in February called for a national robot to be installed in every university in China, including public institutions and vocational schools.
“The robot is the only option to ensure the quality and safety of education for the Chinese students, the public, and the future generations,” the petition said.
It also called for the replacement of human teachers with robots.
In an article in the People’s Daily, the newspaper of the Communist Party, Zhang also said that the robots should be used for teaching and not to teach.
“We should make it possible to teach robots in the classroom and the internet,” Zhang told the newspaper.
The article was accompanied by a graphic on the petition that said robots would be installed at public and private schools in China.
“What we need is a robot that can teach at all levels,” Zhang added.
Zhang, who is based in Nanjing, did not respond to Al Jazeera’s request for comment.
A spokesperson for the CNRS said it had no comment on Zhang’s proposal.
The National Academy of Science of China is the governing body for China’s research and development, and Zhang is a member.
“China has already implemented several national programs, including the Nanotechnology Technology Centre and the Chinese Academy of Engineering,” the National Academy said in a statement on Friday.
“These programs have brought a lot of benefit to the country, including scientific research, industrial development and technological innovation.”
It said it could not comment on the CSAAA’s petition.
China has been one of the most rapidly developing economies in the world, and has become a hub for technology, especially in artificial intelligence.
It has more than 2,400 university courses and more than 6,000 private institutes.
China also has a number of state-run universities that are part of the CNRT.
Zhang is one of a number academics who have been criticised by some members of the public for their advocacy of a robot takeover of the Chinese education system.
Zhang and other academics have come under fire for their stance on automation and the threat of it.
A survey by the Chinese Center for Research on Socio-Technical Information and Technology found that 60 percent of respondents opposed the introduction of a universal robots.
Other scholars have also come under scrutiny for their views.
Zhang has received support from China’s Ministry of Education and the National Development and Reform Commission, which promotes the country’s technological development.
He also receives funding from the Chinese Science and Technical Education Council, a government agency.
“When the time comes to replace a robot with a human, the government will do it,” Zhang is quoted as saying in a March report in the official People’s Liberation Army Daily.