NB: I’ve updated this post several times with more examples, mostly recently 7/25/2023.
As fall classes draw nigh, I wonder (among other things) what colleges and universities are doing to do about generative AI.
I haven’t seen many completed institutional policies. I’ve been looking around and asking on social media, and it seems like either most of academia isn’t taking such a formal step, or is working quietly, behind the scenes. Rebecca Mayglo offered one example of the former:
I haven’t noticed one yet. There have been reminders to avoid plagiarism, but no mention of AI. We study AI as LIS students though.
— Rebecca (@RebeccaSMayglo) July 20, 2023
I think many campuses are going through what Karl Aho describes:
We’ve got a study group working on advising the provost about policy/guidelines. We don’t have one in place yet.
We've got a study group working on advising the provost about policy/guidelines. We don't have one in place yet.
— Karl Aho (@kmfaho) July 19, 2023
The University of Arizona has several working groups, according to Nicole Hennig.
Others haven’t reached that formal organization yet, operating still in study mode, as Jim McGensy observes:
Nope! And I don't think we've done enough institutional thinking-through to craft and implement a workable one. No policy > bad policy
— Jason McGensy (@jpmcgensy) July 20, 2023
Marc Watkins thinks a lack of general AI literacy means institutions can’t develop policies yet:
There is no effective policy until general AI literacy is common, and until the tech pauses development for at least a few years, likewise stops being integrated into software we use every day. We have a task force campus wide about AI.
— Marc Watkins (@Marc__Watkins) July 20, 2023
Watkins later added: “It feels like we’re eons away from accepted practice in edu.”
Some institutions are trying to boost AI knowledge on campus. Auburn University launched a Teaching with AI online class for its faculty and staff. The University of Mississippi has conducted a summer class on AI. The University of Arizona’s library published a libguide on “AI Literacy in the Age of ChatGPT” plus a Student Guide to ChatGPT.
This isn’t to underplay efforts under way. The American University of Armenia added a note about AI in their cheating policy:
6.4.2. Cheating. Cheating includes but is not limited to:
188.8.131.52. using or referring to notes, books, devices or other sources of information, including advanced Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools, such as ChatGPT, in completing an Academic Evaluation or Assignment, when such use has not been expressly allowed by the faculty member who is conducting the examination;
Hosftra University on Long Island did a similar amendment to their syllabus policies:
Hofstra University places high value upon educating students about academic integrity. At the same time, the University will not tolerate dishonesty, and it will not offer the privileges of the community to the repeat offender. The academic community assumes that work of any kind–whether a research paper, a critical essay, a homework assignment, a test or quiz, a computer program, or a creative assignment in any medium–is done, entirely and without unauthorized assistance, by the individual(s) whose name(s) it bears. Use of generative artificial intelligence tools (e.g. Chat GPT) must be consistent with the instructor’s stated course policy. Unless indicated otherwise in the instructions for a specific assignment, the use of Chat GPT or similar artificial intelligence tools for work submitted in this course constitutes the receiving of “unauthorized assistance for academic work”, and is a violation of the Hofstra University Honor Code. Students bear the ultimate responsibility for implementing the principles of academic integrity. [emphases added]
Montclair State University updated their plagiarism policies in May:
Information taken from generative AI, such as ChatGPT, must be cited, otherwise it will be defined as plagiarism. Best practice for some disciplines may be to find the same information elsewhere for a complete citation.
Zurich’s University for Applied Sciences (ZHAW) issued two German-language policies earlier this year. One is, as far as my bad German and Google Translate allows, a blog post offering guidelines for teaching. Another is a more extensive look at AI for assessment.
Roughly the same here. We have a task force, and guidelines. I think guidance has been pretty good, and appropriately flexible. Flexibility is needed for the reasons Marc outlines. We're all feeling our way here and appropriate policies for intro/adv courses may be different.
— @tedunderwood.bsky.social 🦋 (@Ted_Underwood) July 20, 2023
We have a task force, and guidelines. I think guidance has been pretty good, and appropriately flexible. Flexibility is needed for the reasons Marc outlines. We’re all feeling our way here and appropriate policies for intro/adv courses may be different.
College Unbound is doing a fascinating and possibly unusual effort on this score, going through an iterative policy and practice development process including students. (thanks to Lance Eaton). Kwantlen Polytechnic University is developing policies and has shared some guidance.
There are other moves campuses can make concerning AI and classes. Amanda Sturgill names two: modifying career support for graduates, and one program (mass communication) working within that profession.
At my school, we are thinking about the effects on life/profession after college. So are parts of mass communication education's professional organization.
— Prof. Amanda Sturgill (@DrSturg) July 20, 2023
At my school, we are thinking about the effects on life/profession after college. So are parts of mass communication education’s professional organization.
Then things come down to individual classes and instructors, and what they decide to do. Lance Eaton has set up a terrific Google Doc of classroom policies, which display a lot of creativity.
There’s got to be more going on out there, just not eliciting much of a buzz.
So this is a plea for help, a call for pointers. Have you seen any campuses working on policies or other big decisions about AI and fall classes?
We can use this post as a place to share examples. If they grow, I can set up a Google Doc.