Exploring the Challenges and Implications of Generative AI in Education: A Conversation on the Intersection of Human and Artificial Intelligence

The Vice President of NYCU, Chien Chou, and the Dean of Academic Affairs, Yong-Sheng Chen, hosted two symposiums for faculty members and students on March 10th and March 14th to discuss the emergence of generative AI tools like ChatGPT. The discussions will be helpful for the university in formulating regulations for the use of generative AI tools.

Inviting Students To Discuss Talking About Artificial Intelligence With Human Intelligence Together.

Inviting Students To Discuss Talking About Artificial Intelligence With Human Intelligence Together.

The emergence of generative AI tools, such as ChatGPT, has resulted in a growing number of students utilizing them to complete assignments and papers. As a response to the impact of generative AI on the academic community, various universities in Taiwan have released teaching guidelines. As a response, NYCU conducted separate on-campus forums for teachers and students on March 10th and 14th, 2023. During these open discussions, the university gathered opinions and concerns from both groups regarding the use of ChatGPT. By doing so, the university was able to establish an on-campus consensus on the matter and develop relevant regulations to assist with this issue.

On March 10th, a teacher forum on teaching and learning with generative AI was held. The attending teachers unanimously agreed that a positive and proactive attitude is necessary in the face of cross-generational technological applications. They suggested that the university should leverage its strengths in research and development, particularly in the fields of electrical engineering, information technology, and biomedicine, to foster the development of AI technology and its applications. This would showcase the university’s status as a top-tier research institution.

The students discuss: Human-machine collaboration for learning assistance.

Regarding the benefits of ChatGPT for learning, students pointed out, based on personal experience, that it can provide detailed and universal answers for the knowledge they encounter in class that they don’t understand. Some students also mentioned that it is useful for interdisciplinary collaborations, as it can help them understand basic knowledge and terminology from different fields. Nevertheless, not all experiences of using ChatGPT have been positive. Some students have raised concerns about the reliability of the information provided by ChatGPT, stating that it requires sufficient background knowledge and data verification skills in order to judge the accuracy of the content.

Some students have pointed out that ChatGPT is unable to comprehend more complex subjects, such as advanced statistics, and thus using it may require more time to correct its errors. Additionally, some students have raised concerns about information security and privacy in technology applications, such as where the uploaded content will be stored and how it will be utilized, expressing their worries. Vice President Chien Chou mentioned that there are ongoing discussions about generative artificial intelligence. This event is unique as it is centered on students sharing their views and applications of generative AI, unlike other approaches that invite experts and scholars to provide recommendations.

The on-site activities reveal that students are not entirely accepting new technological applications, but instead, they express concerns and explore possible solutions. This demonstrates that when confronted with new learning technologies, students possess a higher level of reflective ability, which is an important aspect of talent cultivation. NYCU has set up a task force to apply generative artificial intelligence in university education and research. The university plans to create policies and reference guidelines for the use of generative AI based on feedback from teachers and students. These guidelines will serve as a basis for using generative AI in the near future.”

Reaching a consensus: Being open-minded, ChatGPT should assist in the classroom to some extent.

After discussing various scenarios, the faculty and students at NYCU reached a consensus during the symposium that ChatGPT can provide “partial assistance” in courses but should not be relied upon solely. If students depend entirely on ChatGPT for writing, they may lose the opportunity to express their unique perspectives and fail to demonstrate their comprehension of course content. This could make it difficult for teachers to evaluate their learning progress.

Vice President Chien Chou emphasized that exams and assignments are essential for achieving educational goals. She stated that they are a necessary evil and must be completed by the students themselves. Failure to do so may prevent the achievement of educational objectives.

The attitude of the NYCU faculty towards ChatGPT is positive and open-minded. They encourage students to use it as a tool. For example, some students mentioned that their teachers would require them to use ChatGPT in class and discuss and exchange ideas about their results, providing students with correct usage concepts. Moreover, several professors from different departments have expressed their plans to incorporate ChatGPT into their teaching objectives. For instance, the Faculty of Law intends to offer a course that teaches students how to use ChatGPT to organize and generate legal documents.

Yong-Sheng Chen, the Dean of Academic Affairs, believes that AI may not necessarily replace one’s job in the future, but it will definitely be replaced by those who can use AI tools effectively. Instead of waiting to be eliminated, it is better to learn how to use AI tools during one’s studies.

Future goal: To establish guidelines in collaboration with the faculty and students

ChatGPT represents a significant advancement in the application of artificial intelligence technology and has become a leading trend for the future. Vice President Chien Chou stated that as a top research university, NYCU has always been concerned with the field of artificial intelligence and should integrate various fields such as electrical engineering, information technology, biomedical sciences, and humanities to deepen research on artificial intelligence from multiple perspectives. With this vision in mind, NYCU will integrate academic ethics and internal consensus and revise relevant reference guidelines and regulations.

Academic Affairs Director Yong-Sheng Chen stated that NYCU maintains a consistent open-minded academic culture and wishes to hear more opinions from the community before drafting policies regarding new topics. Generative artificial intelligence has brought new challenges to teaching and learning in universities. Therefore, it is crucial to cultivate students’ technological (AI) literacy. In addition to enhancing technical skills such as computational thinking and machine learning, improving information literacy, independent thinking, and critical thinking abilities are all essential for future development. Regarding teachers, AI technology can also be used to optimize teaching quality and explore the feasibility and practice of diverse assessment methods. Learning to use technology to create new knowledge instead of being limited by it is an important mission for higher education in the future.

More details: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yyE7wMdtFlw