What does the chatbot "ChatGPT" have to say on its use in the educational system?


With the continuing hot debate on the benefits of AI in the educational system and confronted with the possibility of student plagiarism (without access to a plagiarism detection software), I asked ChatGPT how it would go about detecting if students are using ChatGPT during written exams.

ChatGPT recognises that all of the following can be challenging, but there are some language patterns and characteristics that might indicate its usage:

Unusual or advanced vocabulary: ChatGPT has a wide-ranging vocabulary and can suggest advanced or uncommon words and phrases. NB: looking out for certain language that is not typical for a certain generation. There are always exceptions such as students who are studying literature and who are exposed to different writing styles and perspectives.

Written assignment example: if you provided a simple prompt and received a written assignment with complex language, it could be a signal that some students may have sought external assistance, such as from AI language models like ChatGPT, or they might have consulted other sources.

Complex sentence structures: ChatGPT can generate complex and well-structured sentences. If a student's writing suddenly becomes more sophisticated than usual, it might raise suspicion.

Inconsistencies in writing style: Since ChatGPT generates text based on context, there might be inconsistencies in writing style if students switch between their own writing and text generated by ChatGPT.

Lack of personal voice or originality: ChatGPT tends to lack personal voice and originality. If a student's writing suddenly lacks their usual voice or seems too generic, it could be a red flag.

Rapid improvement or sudden changes in writing quality: If a student's writing quality suddenly improves dramatically or changes significantly in style, it could indicate the use of external assistance.

Unusual sources or references: If students reference sources or information that are not typically covered in the course material or are too advanced for their level of understanding, it could suggest they used ChatGPT for assistance.

Consistency in errors or inaccuracies: If students consistently make similar errors or include inaccurate information that seems out of place, it could be a sign of reliance on AI-generated content.

ChatGPT agreed with me on two major points:

- It is not a substitute for critical thinking,
- It is not a substitute for personal voice or orginality. As an AI language model, it does not possess personal experiences, emotions, or individuality like us humans.

Final thought: While AI models can be valuable tools for learning, they are most effective when integrated into a broader educational framework that includes diverse learning experiences, human interaction, critical thinking, and active engagement.

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