CLEVELAND (WJW) –  Artificial Intelligence and apps like ChatGPT can seemingly answer any question in a matter of seconds, from defining theorems to composing a thesis on world hunger or even writing lyrics to an entire song. 

“I think the game has changed with schooling,” said Jordan Sensabaugh at CSU campus.

In response, many school districts and colleges are creating and/or updating their codes of conduct to address AI.

“We actually have a statement that directs students to really understand the code of conduct because artificial intelligence as a platform is still considered a technology that could be an enabler for things like plagiarism, or other unfair advantages,” said Dr. Joseph Fox, University of Akron 

The University of Akron has been taking a proactive interdisciplinary approach to prepare for AI by forming a task force last year; creating and implanting a new plan this year to manage the rapidly evolving technology.

The Code of Conduct clearly defines cheating and forbids students from using technology like AI to cheat.

However, faculty members have discretion and are permitted to allow AI for their coursework, and it’s outlined in each syllabus.

Students must then be briefed by those instructors and agree to the terms, so that AI can be used to enhance learning but not for cheating.

“Because, again, a ubiquitous approach doesn’t mean the same thing in the School of Art versus someone that’s going to be needing to use machine classifiers to actually do something with information systems,” said Fox.

Many colleges and universities, including CSU and Kent, are taking similar approaches, while superintendents from across NE Ohio have also been holding meetings to discuss AI.

The Mentor School District began planning for AI about a year ago, says Superintendent Craig Heath. “We talked a lot about the pros and the cons and obviously immediately in education you go right to cheating.”

The district brought in experts to further discuss the implications of AI and how it can be utilized to benefit students and staff.

Together they developed an integrated approach to learning that will begin at the kindergarten level so that “it’s second nature” to students by the time they’ve graduated.

Heath says teachers can apply AI to improve lesson plans and scheduling, while students can incorporate it into their work.

“You scaffold the way you do a lesson,” he said. “For example, you want this part to be utilizing artificial intelligence or ChatGPT, and then maybe this next phase you’re not using that, but you’re making something your own.”

Using Artificial Intelligence to produce real learning at every level.

“So, I’m personally excited and a lot of my colleagues are extremely excited about it because we see the professionals we’re helping students become,” said Dr. Fox.

“And how to succeed in life and knowing the difference between right and wrong,” added Superintendent Heath.