Is AI your ticket to an A paper?

By Steven Barrera

Editor’s Note: Portions of this article were written by an AI. Can you spot it?

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become increasingly prevalent in the modern world, with advancements in the field leading to the creation of innovative technologies that have made many aspects of daily life easier. 

“All the buzz and media around Chat GPT have to do with how human-like its generated text is,” said Dr. David Crater, TMU’s chair and associate professor of engineering and computer science. “It tends to be detailed and articulate across a wide range of knowledge domains. This makes it a potential common source, for example, of plagiarism: people using Chat GPT to write magazine articles or college essays.”

This same technology also poses significant challenges, particularly in education. One of the major dangers of students using AI is cheating, which has become easier and more prevalent due to the availability of AI tools such as Chat GPT.

“It raises questions about possible illegitimate uses that are increasingly hard to detect,” Crater said.

Cheating with AI has taken many forms, from using AI-powered writing software to produce essays and papers to using AI to generate answers to online quizzes and exams. This undermines the educational process and can lead to students receiving grades and credentials they do not deserve, which can have long-term consequences.

“If that’s who you are, you have missed what a university education is about. You’re spending an awful amount of money on a missed opportunity to develop your mind and develop your ability to critically think about different ideas,” said Matthew Brown, associate professor of education at TMU.

While AI like Chat GPT makes cheating harder to catch, it makes it easier to expose where your heart is.

“You can’t tell me that someone that is choosing to use whatever resource is available to them so that they don’t have to do the work isn’t already engaged in other practices that are just as bad,” Brown said. “Whether it is their sexual purity, their devotion to their walk with the Lord–all of those aspects will carry over into adulthood.”

While there are ways to use Chat GPT for cheating, there are many ways it can be used in a responsible way that helps the user. Professors such as Brown who love to use technology in the classroom believe that Chat GPT can be a helpful resource.

It can be useful to understand complex topics that you don’t understand. It can be a great tool if used to help with your writing regarding how to structure an essay and how to transition between ideas. 

“There is nothing inherently evil about Chat GPT. The concerns surrounding it are common to all the most advanced AI systems: they can do great good if used properly,” Crater said.

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