The current state of Artificial intelligence (AI)
Artificial intelligence (AI)
There is no doubt that AI is now an integral technological tool that may be accessed within education. It is considered vital that schools not only keep up with the latest technological development, but that they also teach their students how they can proactively and positively engage such tools.
While student safety is paramount, innovative ways to include these developments in learning are important to ensure students remain engaged and have access to, knowledge of and skills to manipulate these tools, in order that they continue to develop on their lifelong learning journey.
Knowing how to evaluate an AI response and utilise the information gained to creatively refine and improve the responses obtained, can further develop students’ knowledge and awareness, whilst also being exposed to the short comings of such tools. AI responses can be limited, biased and of poor quality and students must learn to perceive such and utilise the tool with an open mind, and not a means to an end in their studies.
ChatGPT is free online software that has the ability to quickly convert complex information, ideas and languages into cohesive text that sounds like natural human speech.
It has access to a veritable encyclopedia of knowledge and can utilise this information to create a plethora of responses to requests of a certain nature. It is a learning tool which will supplement and reinforce lesson content, but it does have its limitations. It will not for example inform you of where to purchase the best coffee in Werribee.
ChatGPT will provide quick responses, is available 24/7, can provide supplementary information to a student’s request, is adaptable over a range of subject areas and will provide responses for many requests at the same time.
However, students must realise that as all students have access to ChatGPT similar search questions will result in similar responses, thus making it difficult to argue individuality in the classroom. The lack of creative thinking is also an issue as responses are pre-programmed so opportunity to express a student’s own ideas and creativity are not presented. Limitations in critical thinking and problem-solving skills arise due to AI providing answers and solutions, often with ethical concerns, as biases and discriminatory themes may be presented in the response.
The knowledge database ChatGPT accesses is limited in recent information so accuracy concerns and misinformation become paramount, so students must verify all information obtained. This then creates difficulty in referencing resources as AI does not always provide its sources of information.
While students view AI software such as ChatGPT as a tool that is available to utilise for resource material to then be scrutinised and adapted to suit their needs, then AI has a new role to play in the classroom and education of our students.