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University Students Are Embracing AI, But Educators Are Concerned

The study shows that ChatGPT is becoming a popular tool for students in a wide range of university courses 

Image source: The Knowledge Academy

A recent study by The Knowledge Academy found that about 72% of university students studying Digital Law or Legal courses use ChatGPT for their studies. While the chatbot can help find important information from various sources, some users believe the tool might fabricate content. Users are urged to double-check their work themselves after utilising the chatbot. 

In second place, nearly 68% of students in Psychology, Philosophy, Religious Studies, and English have used ChatGPT in their studies. Yet, there are questions about whether AI algorithms learn from biased data, leading to ethical problems. Computer Science and Politics share the third spot, with 66% of students in these fields using ChatGPT in their studies.

Martha Folkes, head of apprenticeships at The Knowledge Academy says, “The prevalence of AI has been growing recently, and has prompted much debate in the education sector among students. With recent reports of students having their work disqualified for plagiarism reasons linked to the use of ChatGPT, it is crucial for students to ensure they aren’t using it excessively, or in any manner which can impact their results or the legitimacy of their own work.” 

Reasons for using the chatbot 

Based on the results, the most common use of ChatGPT among university students is for exam prep, according to 34%. Another third (33%) of students use it for tasks like checking spelling and grammar, brainstorming ideas, writing emails and planning study schedules.

Looking at how often ChatGPT is utilised, around 33% of university students use the bot a few times a year, and nearly 32% use it a few times a week. Interestingly, a little over 13% of university students use ChatGPT daily in their studies.

“ChatGPT has been reported to be useful for brainstorming ideas, organising, planning, and analysing text. It can have benefits when helping those students organise study plans, and methods of revision,” added Folkes. “However, it still remains crucial that students exercise their own abilities to be creative, think critically, and analyse as much as they can, with human creativity still being found to be of high importance in all areas of study. 

The head of apprenticeships went on to say that it can be helpful for educational institutions to make ChatGPT usable in specific disciplines and regulations. This would help students figure out the best way to utilise the chatbot, as well as the ways it shouldn’t be used. 

You can read the full data set including all survey questions here

Written By

Isa Muhammad is a writer and video game journalist covering many aspects of entertainment media including the film industry. He's steadily writing his way to the sharp end of journalism and enjoys staying informed. If he's not reading, playing video games or catching up on his favourite TV series, then he's probably writing about them.

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