First, what is ChatGPT?
ChatGPT is a chatbot released to the public by OpenAI that has quickly garnered attention for its ability to provide detailed, conversational answers across many areas of expertise.
Already, ChatGPT users have been coming up with some pretty creative ways to use the program, from auto-generating dating profile responses to providing medical feedback to something as scary as writing malicious code.
How does it work?
ChatGPT is a large language model (LLM) that uses natural language processing and machine learning algorithms to answer users' prompts in a conversational way. LLMs work by processing massive amounts of data to accurately predict what word comes next in a sentence.
And by massive, we mean MASSIVE. According to Stanford University, GPT-3 “has 175 billion parameters and was trained on 570 gigabytes of text. For comparison, its predecessor, GPT-2, was over 100 times smaller at 1.5 billion parameters.”
To put those numbers with a lot of zeros into perspective, if you were to translate the power of GPT-3 to GPT-2 into distance traveled, it would be the difference between traveling from New York to San Francisco and New York to the end of Staten Island.
Putting it to the test: ChatGPT Bot vs. Human
We wanted to see if we could tell the difference between the artificial and the living perspective by giving a chatbot and a copywriter the same prompt and directions for an article.
Can you tell which is which?
The Prompt: “3 Ways ChatGPT is Affecting the Education Industry”
The Tone: ‘conversational,’ ‘expert,’ ‘helpful’
Keywords: “GPT in education”, “teachers”, “Chat GPT in schools”
Below you’ll read each of the three points (they were different) side-by-side.
First Point - Version 1:
Students may use ChatGPT to write school papers
For parents, teachers, and administrators, the most obvious concern with ChatGPT in education is the student’s ability to use the AI to write their school papers and essays for them. Issues of cheating and plagiarism have become more and more common as technology has evolved. In this regard, advanced AI’s built to write professional-grade papers will obviously pose a problem.
It should be mentioned that OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT, has put several measures in place to prohibit such use of the program. If prompted by a student to write an essay or answer a homework question, the AI will respond with a message denying the student’s use of the program:
“DO NOT USE CHATGPT OR ANY OTHER AUTOMATED WRITING TOOL FOR SCHOOL PAPERS. THIS IS CHEATING AND WILL NOT BE TOLERATED…”
Students are resourceful and efficient. Many are already finding alternative ways to access ChatGPT so they can have the program write their papers. It’s hard to say where the student-ChatGPT relationship will stand in the long run. At the very least, it will make parent-teacher conferences more interesting.
First Point - Version 2:
ChatGPT has the ability to provide personalized learning for students.
It uses natural language processing and machine learning algorithms to generate conversations with users, allowing them to ask questions or provide feedback on their work. This enables teachers to customize each student's educational experience according to their needs and preferences.
For example, ChatGPT can be used to create interactive lessons that adapt based on a student's input. If a student is struggling with specific concepts, ChatGPT can detect this and offer more detailed explanations or additional resources. On the other hand, if a student is progressing quickly through the material but needs extra challenge, ChatGPT can adjust the difficulty of the lessons accordingly.
Second Point - Version 1:
ChatGPT may have benefits for the education industry
Artificial intelligence is undoubtedly a scary thing and it’s easy to focus on all the negatives in that regard. But as many techies are pointing out, ChatGPT is a tool, not a villain. Here are a few of the ways it may actually benefit those in education:
- Comprehensive research can be completed and boiled down into compact summaries or abstracts. This could prove to be a tremendous advantage for those writing academic papers.
- ChatGPT can generate sophisticated practice questions for additional study material.
- ChatGPT can provide personalized – scarily human – feedback on essays and papers, helping to identify areas of improvement in writing skills.
- Data summaries and reports can be created from large data sets. This is another huge help for the STEM fields.
- ChatGPT can create in-depth lesson plans and teaching materials, freeing up the classroom calendar for educators.
Second Point - Version 2:
ChatGPT could help teachers create lessons and assessments that are more engaging for students who may not be able to access traditional in-person classes.
Some examples include:
- Teachers can use ChatGPT to create lessons that are tailored specifically to each student’s needs and preferences, allowing them to enjoy a more personalized learning experience.
- ChatGPT can be used to provide detailed explanations of difficult concepts by asking questions or providing feedback on student answers.
- ChatGPT can help foster discussion among classmates by creating virtual chat rooms where students can ask questions or share ideas with each other.
In this type of multifaceted, engaging environment, students are encouraged to collaborate with one another while developing their understanding of different concepts.
Third Point - Version 1:
Students can receive timely feedback on their work, making it easier for them to understand complex concepts faster.
For example, teachers can provide students with detailed explanations about the material that they are studying and offer personalized advice on how to improve their understanding.
This could include creating interactive quizzes or tests that give students instant feedback on their answers. Students are then able to identify areas of improvement and receive further explanation if needed.
Furthermore, this ensures that each assignment is appropriately challenging and relevant for the individual student — helping them better understand difficult concepts while saving time for the teacher in the process.
Third Point - Version 2:
ChatGPT may improve students writing abilities
We’ve already hit on the main concern teachers are having with ChatGPT in education – that student’s will simply use the AI to replace any writing skills they may have once had. Many teachers are concerned that ChatGPT and other AIs like it will render high school English class obsolete – and in a way, they are right. It will completely change the way high school English class is taught, but not for the worse.
The technologically optimistic English teachers are already using ChatGPT to their advantage. These teachers have realized there may not be profound benefit in having students write the same essays they’ve been writing for the past century, and have adjusted their curriculum accordingly.
Certain K-12 teachers are providing students with AI-generated work and teaching them to correct and improve it. This fact-checking, editorial work is a fantastic way for students to learn information literacy. It’s also worth noting this type of AI editorial work will become a major career in the near future.
In a way, these forward-thinking teachers are preparing a generation of students for the world they are to inherit. Maybe the advanced AI, ChatGPT, isn’t so bad after all.
How’d you do?
Below are some interesting takeaways we found:
- ChatGPT inherently presents positive findings. Whereas the human copywriter instantly recognized the most popular concern from teachers on ChatGPT (cheating), the bot only listed positive findings. In fact, we asked it directly if “Chat GPT could be used to write school papers.” It’s response? No, chat GPT cannot be used to write school papers. It is meant to help teachers create interactive lessons and assessments and give students feedback on their work, not as a way for them to cheat on school assignments. Of course, this statement is in a grey area of truth. The bot is saying what it should do but not what is possible to do.
- Time taken to write the article:
- Human: 2hrs, 47min
- AI: About 12 seconds
- ChatGPT does not cite sources. In fact, the human copywriter included relevant hyperlinks to back up some of their findings. But we took them out because it almost made it too easy to identify.
- ChatGPT has a tendency to include more transition phrases such as “for example” or “furthermore.”
Anything we missed?
Has your school been discussing the implications of ChatGPT and, if so, what are your thoughts? We’d love to hear from you!
P.S. As a call-to-action for this blog post we asked ChatGPT to answer the prompt: “Why should I connect with Foxbright.” Here was its unedited (and frankly quite flattering) response:
“Reaching out to Foxbright can bring a lot of benefits to your business. They offer cutting-edge technology and innovative solutions that are designed to help you optimize operations and increase efficiency. Foxbright also has a team of experienced professionals who can provide training, implementation and support services tailored to your specific needs. Finally, their customer service is top-notch, so you know you're getting the best possible experience when you partner with them.”