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AI-generated portrait of a young woman.

Credit: Craiyon, response to "Human computer-generated beautiful," Craiyon, October 2, 2023. 

Dutton Digest, October 2023

October 6th, 2023

Managing the AI Firehose

Whether you’re optimistic, concerned, or a little bit of both, artificial intelligence (AI) should be on your mind this year. According to a summer article from Inside Higher Ed, employers are looking for new hires to be experienced with tools such as ChatGPT (Schroeder, 2023), so supplementing some of your course activities and materials is something to consider sooner rather than later. You might even follow Oregon State University professor Andy Olstad, who allowed students to write their final essays with or without the help of ChatGPT. You read that correctly -- why not jump in and give AI a try instead of shying away?

Effective teaching about any new concept or tool must include some demonstration, discussion, and hands-on practice. When working with AI, it should also include some critical thinking to analyze and evaluate results.

Check out the following articles, which offer ideas for how to use AI-related activities in the classroom to help learners gain effective experience with AI tools and to think about their effectiveness and validity.

Academic integrity as related to AI is, of course, of concern to instructors everywhere. Penn State’s AI, Pedagogy, and Academic Integrity site can answer many questions, provide ideas for your syllabus statement, and point you to a wealth of AI and AI-related tools for practice. There’s also a complete AI literacy unit you can import into your Canvas space.

Additionally, some deep thought about why cheating occurs and how to help students function without it is a perennial topic in education. For more, see Instead of Policing Students, We Need to Abolish Cheating: The Best Response to ChatGPT Is to Pay More Attention to Why Students Cheat in the First Place by Jordan A. Stein

Finally, along with the hype surrounding AI tools and their use in education is the less visible but enormously important issue of equity (economic, racial, ability) as related to student access. The digital divide is real and it’s complicated. Learn more with the following resources:

Schroeder, R. (2023, July 5). This fall, how will you integrate gen AI into your university work? Inside Higher Ed.