Artificial Intelligence has had a looming presence in our society for decades. Still, with the recent popularity of ChatGPT, questions have begun to arise regarding its impact on our lives. While artificial intelligence may be viewed as a threat to authentic schoolwork, I believe that educators should recognize the benefits that can come from it. Not only this, but they should find a way to incorporate it into the education system as a tool rather than a restriction.
Chat GPT was launched in November of 2022 and was able to amass over one million users within a week (Baidoo-Anu & Ansah, 2023). It is self-described as “a conversational AI created by OpenAI that uses advanced deep learning techniques to generate human-like responses to natural language input” (ChatGPT, 2023). Since its release, it quickly became a large-scale topic of discussion and controversy. Many have questioned its legitimacy and accuracy, while others have brought up the implications that it would have in education. The chatbot is incredibly easy and fast for anyone, namely students, to retrieve information. Not only this, but it can write essays, create outlines, solve numerical problems, and write code. Consequently, this makes it easy for students to compromise their academic integrity. A Stanford survey found that 17% of students used ChatGPT on their fall quarter-finals (Cu & Hochman, 2023). This demonstrates that cheating using AI continues, even in prestigious institutions. Furthermore, in higher education, the use of AI to complete school work could be argued to “undermine … the very purpose of higher education, which is to challenge and educate students, and could ultimately lead to a devaluation of degrees” (Cotton et al., 2023, p. 3). University students could be jeopardizing their academic careers as a result of the technology, and it is crucial that it is not used in a way that could impact their quality of education.
While AI technology could pose a threat to genuine schoolwork, it is also valuable to note the possible benefits that it can have within the realm of education. ChatGPT can be a valuable tool for students to help them learn better. The chatbot has been noticed and recently used to create individualized student learning plans. A study discovered that it was able to adapt to the varied levels of knowledge and create necessary adjustments when required (Chiang, 2020, as cited in Baidoo-Anu & Ansah, 2023). This model could contribute towards more efficient studying and learning among students at all levels of education; and would provide personal suggestions, allowing for a deeper understanding of course content. Not only can this form of technology be of use to students, but teachers can also benefit from it. One professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania stated that using Chat GPT decreased the time it took to make and test the exam from 30 hours to 15, a 50% decrease. This illustrates that an open mind about artificial intelligence could save them time. Not only this, but the time could be spent in other ways, such as having more time to develop connections with their students (Baidoo-Anu & Ansah, 2023).
It is my opinion that artificial intelligence is an inevitable aspect of our future, and the technology will only continue to improve and be less detectable. Therefore, its restriction will serve no benefit to students or instructors. Instead, educators should be conducting further research into how we can implement the use of AI technology “throughout the student lifecycle in order to take advantage of the immense potential that these technologies have for constructing intelligent learning and teaching systems” (Alam & Mohanty, 2023, para. 38). AI has and will continue to be integrated into our society, and combatting it will make things harder for both educators and students. In fact, a professor at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania has included an AI policy in his syllabus for the first time, but he is not forbidding it. Students in his class are permitted to use it for discussions and other work as long as they check for errors and state that they used the software (Wood & Kelly, 2023). I believe this policy is fair and encourages honesty, a vital part of academic integrity.
To conclude, it is clear that artificial intelligence can be used negatively and can provoke unoriginal work by students. However, I think educators should be taking strides toward using technology in schools; this includes implementing AI as a tool. By encouraging the use of AI to help students further their understanding, rather than banning it entirely, students will likely be more informed and therefore make more informed decisions.
Alam, A., & Mohanty, A. (2023, January). Foundation for the Future of Higher Education or ‘Misplaced Optimism’? Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence. In Innovations in Intelligent Computing and Communication: First International Conference, ICIICC 2022. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-23233-6_2
Baidoo-Anu, D., & Owusu Ansah, L. (2023). Education in the Era of Generative Artificial Intelligence (AI): Understanding the Potential Benefits of ChatGPT in Promoting Teaching and Learning. Available at SSRN 4337484.
(ChatGPT, personal communication, March 13, 2023)
Cotton, D., Cotton, P., & Shipway, J. R. (2023, January 10). Chatting and Cheating. Ensuring academic integrity in the era of ChatGPT. https://doi.org/10.1080/14703297.2023.2190148
Cu, M. A., & Hochman, S. (2023, January 22). Scores of Stanford students used CHATGPT on final exams. The Stanford Daily. https://stanforddaily.com/2023/01/22/scores-of-stanford-students-used-chatgpt-on-final-exams-survey-suggests/
Wood, P., & Kelly, M. L. (2023, January 26). ‘everybody is cheating’: Why this teacher has adopted an open chatgpt policy. NPR. https://www.npr.org/2023/01/26/1151499213/chatgpt-ai-education-cheating-classroom-wharton-school
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