For those of you who have been reading Early Chirp regularly, you might have seen our previous reports about the advancements in artificial intelligence — particularly in the development of ChatGPT.
The platform makes it easy to communicate with AI in a way that sounds remarkably human, which has some positive and negative connotations. Among the potential downsides, some people believe, is that it’ll make it much easier for students to convincingly cheat when writing research papers.
Professors have started to react to the issue, and what they say might surprise you.
Maybe it’s not a big deal
As Pennsylvania State University English professor Stuart Selber explained, a supposed threat to education surfaces “every year or two” but the institution is still standing strong.
Specifically, he said that the chatbot doesn’t seem all that adept at forming and backing up an original argument, which are central components of a convincing essay.
Muhlenberg College assistant professor Dr. Jacqueline Antonovich put ChatGPT to the test, entering an essay prompt and determining that the resulting document would earn “an F” or “an F- if that’s possible.”
It might even make things better
When used effectively, professors think that the latest AI tools could have a positive impact on higher education. For starters, Selber said that it could reduce the amount of time and effort that students have to spend searching for information, which could give them more time to focus on developing sound arguments and writing high-quality papers.
For University of Leeds lecturer Dr. Leah Henrickson, ChatGPT seems to offer “a lot of potential for helping people express themselves in ways that they hadn’t necessarily thought about” while proving “particularly useful for students who speak English as a second language or for students who aren’t used to the academic writing style.”