ChatGPT Is Making Universities Rethink Plagiarism

While Daily acknowledges that this technological growth is raising new concerns in academia, she does not consider it entirely uncharted territory. “I think we’ve been in some version of this territory for a while,” says Daily. “Students who commit plagiarism often borrow material from ‘somewhere’ – for example, a website that does not have a clear author attribution. I suspect the definition of plagiarism will expand to include things that produce.”

Finally, Daily believes that a student who uses text from ChatGPT is not viewed any differently than one who copies and pastes chunks of text from Wikipedia without acknowledging the source.

students’ opinions ChatGPT are a whole different problem. There are people like Cobbs who can’t imagine putting their name on something bot-generated, but there are others who see it as just another tool, like a spell checker or even a calculator. For Jacob Gelman, a sophomore at Brown University, ChatGPT exists merely as a hands-on research assistant and nothing more.

“To call the use of ChatGPT to retrieve reliable sources from the internet ‘scam’ is absurd. It’s like saying that using the internet to conduct research is unethical,” says Gelman. “For me, ChatGPT is the research equivalent of [typing assistant] Grammar. I use it for convenience and that’s really all.” Cobbs was similar, comparing the AI ​​bot to “an online encyclopedia”.

But while students like Gelman use the bot to speed up research, others use the powerful prompt feature to generate ready-made papers for submission. It might seem obvious what counts as cheating here, but different schools across the country offer contrasting takes.

According to Carlee Warfield, chair of Bryn Mawr College’s Student Honor Board, the school considers any use of these AI platforms to be plagiarism. Popularizing the tool just requires a greater focus on assessing the intent behind student violations. Warfield explains that students who submit essays entirely created by AI are categorically different from those who borrow online tools without knowledge of standard citations. Since the ChatGPT phenomenon is still new, students’ confusion about ethics is understandable. And it’s unclear what policies will remain in effect once the dust has settled – at each school.

Amid fundamental changes in both the academic and technological fields, universities are being forced to reconsider their definitions of academic integrity to adequately reflect society’s circumstances. The only problem is that society does not stand still.

“Villanova’s current Academic Integrity Code is being updated to include language that prohibits the use of these tools to generate text that students then represent as self-generated text,” Daily explained. “But I think it’s an evolving thing. And what it can do and then what we need to keep track of it will also be kind of a moving target.”

In addition to increasingly complex questions as to whether ChatGPT is a research tool or a plagiarism machine, there is also the possibility that it can be used for learning. In other educational institutions, teachers see it as a way to show students the shortcomings of AI. Some educators are already changing the way they teach, giving students assignments that bots couldn’t do, such as those that require personal information or anecdotes. It’s also about recognizing the use of AI in student work, which is a burgeoning cottage industry of its own.

Ultimately, Daily says schools may need rules that reflect a range of variables.

“My guess is that there will be the development of some broad guidelines, essentially stating that unless you have a professor’s permission to use AI tools, their use will be considered a violation of the Code of Academic Integrity.” use,” says Daily. “That then gives the faculties a wide scope to use it in their teaching or in their tasks, as long as they expressly allow it.”

As for ChatGTP, the program agrees. “Advancements in areas such as artificial intelligence are expected to lead to significant innovation in the coming years,” it said when asked how schools can tackle academic dishonesty. “Schools should continually review and update their academic codes of honor as technology evolves to ensure they address the current ways in which technology is used in academic settings.”

But a bot would say that. ChatGPT Is Making Universities Rethink Plagiarism

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