About the Project
A current major limitation of ChatGPT (beyond its ability to create original outputs) is the potential inaccuracy or bias of the information it delivers, and it is therefore of critical importance that students can critically engage with the answers generated by the tool. In 2012, Paul and Elder presented their framework as a 'system for intellectual intervention [...] that allows us to take rational command of our cognitive processes so we may rationally determine what to accept and what to reject' - the team will draw on this framework and expand on it to support critical evaluation of AI-generated text.
The recent launch of ChatGPT has attracted global attention, raising questions around the sustainability of current approaches to teaching and assessment in HE. As our understanding of the tool rapidly evolves, it seems clear that AI has made a leap forward and will advance at a faster pace than many of us had anticipated. The implications for educators and students are significant, and so are the opportunities once we start to explore ways of integrating its use in learning processes and approaches.
The project team devised questions to input into AI programmes, generating different formats of text on a range of topics. It then used the Paul-Elder Critical Thinking Framework to evaluate the answers (in terms of accuracy, complexity and overall usefulness), refine the questions and engage further with the tool, designing a critical evaluation framework for AI-generated text. The idea is that the work will be of use to colleagues across disciplines to work with their students, engaging them in a learning process that involves a constructive critique and analysis of AI-generated content based on the research findings.
The collaborative nature of the research will enable our team to learn from each other, sharing their experiences and expertise, and provide the team will a space to articulate their experiences with what is likely to be a significant tool in HE moving forward.
The project will (re)focus conversations around the value and purpose of HE, and the model of education needed to provide students with a learning experience that is synchronised with the world around us. It will provide a stepping stone for future projects and thought leadership for the sector, and strategically engage with what seems to be a milestone in AI applications for educational praxis. One of the unexpected research findings was that the student team would draw on the tool for purposes beyond content and assessment (such as organisation and creating revision resources), which the scholarship has customarily assumed to be its prime use; this indicates a novel avenue for future exploration, which the team intend to explore in an academic article.