SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – Artificial intelligence (AI) is rising in popularity nationwide. That includes the program ChatGPT, but those programs might also be used to get an unfair advantage in school.

AI programs like ChatGPT are capable of generating test answers, book summaries, and even entire essays all with the click of a button.

On November 30th, 2022, the AI tool ChatGPT launched online.

“It’s simply a computer program that accepts as input in natural language questions. You can ask it pretty much anything you would like, and it can give you very good answers to very basic questions,” Morningside University Computer Science Professor, Dean Stevens said.

A powerful resource that students and faculty at Morningside University are aware of.

“It has produced quite a bit of consternation among fellow faculty about ‘are we plagiarizing things? Are students using this to plagiarize materials? And again, as I mentioned before, this has been kind of trained on the breath of human knowledge,” Prof. Stevens said.

If students plagiarize with AI programs like ChatGPT, Morningside’s Chief Information Officer said that is not a good idea.

“We’ve got things in place to look for that kind of plagiarism. In fact, we use a software called Turnitin. Turnitin has a new offering out and it’s specifically for ChatGPT,” Morningside University Chief Information Officer, Mark Lumsden said.

“And if they have done it three or more times in different courses, then that gets referred to the dean and then that’s a possible punishment up to and including expulsion,” said Prof. Stevens.

However, Prof. Stevens said ChatGPT can also be used to enhance the learning experience for students.

“It can do a variety of different languages, whether that be spoken languages like German and French and English, but it also works on computer languages. One of the things you can do is ask it to write a very simple program using a language like Python,” Prof. Stevens said.

“It’s that evolution of technology, and we’re at that place. I kind of look back and think of the days when I was in high school and I couldn’t use a scientific calculator to do algebraic equations, right,” Lumsden said.