The new free app that uses AI to write essays
After coming back to campus this spring, students are intrigued by a new rumor that has been spreading. Students and professors alike are finding out that there is a new way to cheat, called ChatGPT. But most importantly, this way to cheat slips through plagiarizing algorithms.
What is it?
The company, OpenAI, released ChatGPT this past November, however it is only now garnering attention. The app is ever learning and is supposed to be self-improving as it continues to be utilized.
“ChatGPT is a machine learning natural language learning processing system. Basically it takes large data sets of information, that is straight probably off the internet. Sometimes these sorts of systems are also directly fed data. Then it uses that data to produce something that looks like a human made it,” Blaine Hill, deputy director of IT services, said.
The writing style that ChatGPT uses to reformat the gathered information is part of what makes it hard for plagiarism software to detect the apps usage.
“I don’t know if you’ve tried the ChatGPT but you can give it very basic prompts. Like, ‘write me an essay about the french revolution, including factors x, y, z’. It will produce a decent essay with three or four bullet points of what the major factors are,” Hill said.
Professors often ask direct prompts when assigning essay assignments. Now, with ChatGPT, students are able to input the direct prompt and receive a full essay in response.
So how can I use it?
That is the question that has been in a lot of users’ minds, which is why the app is currently unable to be used. ChatGPT had so many users trying to get onto that app that it intermediately down.
Often the app and online server displays that the server is at capacity. Meaning potential users often have to wait for the app developers, OpenAI, to fix or update the app.
Although plagiarism software has not advanced enough to be able to catch ChatGPT work, if you are somehow caught, it would be considered plagiarism at Quincy University.
“So, if a student is actually caught plagiarizing there is a process. There is a form their instructor will have them come in and fill out and either say that they basically admit that they were plagiarizing and accepting the consequences. Or they have the opportunity to appeal it and the first time, if they are found guilty, it is just whatever penalty that the faculty member assigns. But if you are a repeat offender you can get more severe university consequences including expulsion,” Kimberly Hale, assistant VP for academic affairs, said.
Hale stresses that students would not gain any knowledge when relying on ChatGPT. This could translate to other work, like tests, reflecting on that lack of knowledge.
Other Ways To Get Ahead?
Besides ChatGPT there are a multitude of other resources that students do use to get ahead with classes.
“I use Quizlet and Chegg to study, especially when I need extra help on a subject,” Chadwick Stewart said.
There are existing apps that have been on the market now for years that help students not only study, but find answers for assignments.
Some of those apps mentioned by students include:
What does ChatGPT want you to know?