Generative AI is a type of artificial intelligence that uses machine learning algorithms to create new and original content like images, video, text, audio and code. According to an article on generative AI created by ChatGPT, generative AI differs from traditional AI systems that are designed to recognize patterns and make predictions. It produces new content (World Economic Forum).
Generative AI uses technology to understand natural language inputs, or prompts, and to generate natural language outputs called completions. Users interact in a question and answer style conversation (Australian National University).
Educators who understand Generative AI can enhance their own time and resources, facilitate student learning and navigate the challenges and opportunities associated with its use.
AI tools and applications can allow for personalized instruction, adaptive feedback and more individualized, engaging learning experiences. AI algorithms can also provide insights into student performance, identify areas of improvement and support evidence-based decision making. With the use of AI, however, comes the risk of overreliance on technology. Educators must strike a balance between using AI tools and maintaining meaningful teacher-student relationships. Additionally, AI resources may not be equally accessible: addressing this is crucial to mitigating inequalities.
Artificial Intelligence is increasingly prevalent in many fields and industries. AI-savvy educators can better prepare students for the evolving job market and equip them with necessary skills.
Educators who are knowledgeable about the potential biases and limitations of AI can respond to the ethical tensions inherent in the technology. Actively addressing biases in AI systems and nurturing critical thinking skills in students may help them become skeptical and discerning consumers of AI-generated information. Educators must guide students on the responsible and ethical use of AI content in academic work. OpenAI, ChatGPT. Response to "Why should educators embrace AI?" (July 6, 2023, https://chat.openai.com/).
Teaching and learning in the era of generative AI does not need to be all about damage control. Plagiarism and ethics concerns are real, but the advance of generative AI gives us opportunity to work out strong solutions that engage students in perhaps less traditional ways.
Generative AI itself can be a learning tool– as anyone who gets into the tool and starts inputting queries and studying the output knows. Your synapses are firing as you write and read the rapidly generated text. It’s fun, and you’re likely wide awake, judging, speculating, disagreeing, agreeing, and doing all those things that happen when an engaged reader encounters text. These potentials can be used in the classroom.
Conversely, using generative AI to create or enhance the content of submissions when an assignment does not explicitly call or allow for it is academically dishonest and requires conversation with students on the ramifications of such behavior. (Montclair State University Office for Faculty Excellence)
Writing is integral to thinking. It is also hard. Natural language processing (NLP) applications like ChatGPT are useful tools for helping us improve our writing and stimulate our thinking. However, they should never serve as a substitute for either.
Your instructor will let you know how you are and are not allowed to use AI for each course.
• You may not use entire sentences or paragraphs suggested by an app without providing quotation marks and a citation, just as you would to any other source. Citations should take this form: OpenAI, ChatGPT. Response to prompt: “Explain what is meant by the term ‘Triple Bottom Line’” (February 15, 2023, https://chat.openai.com/). (Bentley University, Chris Beneke)