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ChatGPT: What is the AI bot and how does it work?

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    Child on laptop doing homework
    Do you sometimes wish there was a quick and easy way to do your homework?

    Well a new artificial intelligence technology has been released and people are concerned that it could lead to students cheating on their work.

    ChatGPT is an online service which can not only answer questions but also write realistic school essays just like humans.

    Teachers are worried that students may use it to cheat. But what exactly is ChatGPT and how could it affect the future of homework?

    Do you think tools like this should be banned in schools? Or could it be useful if used in a positive way?

    What is ChatGPT?
    ChatGPT with OpenAI logo in background
    ChatGPT was released late last year by company OpenAI, which was founded by Elon Musk..

    The technology chats in a conversational way, answering questions from the user. The online chatbot has been trained on lots of information and data from the internet – it can have a human-like conversation answering questions, admitting mistakes and rejecting any inappropriate questions.

    Experts say it can be used to write essays, stories, poems and even solve computer coding.

    But there are limits to what it can do, which OpenAI admit. Sometimes it writes answers which are incorrect or don’t make sense, and it occasionally guesses what the user has asked it, rather than asking more follow-up questions to understand the question better.

    OpenAI say they are working on those problems.


    Who is Elon Musk?

    What are people saying about it?

    Elon musk tweet@ElonMusk/Twitter

    ChatGPT is getting mixed reviews from people, some think students might use it to cheat whereas others think they should use the tool in the classroom to help children learn.

    Some people have suggested that the software should be welcomed. They argue that, just like when the calculator or Google were created, people were unsure at first, but if teachers introduce the technology and teach pupils the benefits but also the downfalls that could help their learning.

    In the US, the New York City education department banned ChatGPT on school devices and its internet network so students and teachers can’t access it.

    In a statement they said they banned it because of “negative impacts on student learning, and concerns regarding the safety and accuracy of content.”

    “We will be keeping a close eye on how this develops and, if this does become a problem, we will certainly be pressing the government to provide guidance and support.”

    Geoff Barton, General secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders

    Here in the UK, exam regulator for England Ofqual and the Department of Education are keeping an eye on if the chatbot is being used to cheat.

    Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said: “We’re aware of concerns that ChatGPT may be used by some pupils to write answers and pass this off as their own work, although we have not directly received reports of problems from our members thus far.”

    What are the problems with ChatGPT?
    child laptopGetty Images

    ChatGPT is an easy way for students to write an essay or answer questions but some of the language it uses might prove to teachers that a child hasn’t written it themselves.

    So although pupils may be tempted to use it, teachers might be able to spot quickly if it isn’t your work because it doesn’t sound how you would usually write.

    A downside of the software is that teachers give homework because they want to assess your writing, see if you have understood the work and test your analysing skills – all of which can’t be judged if it was written by the chatbot.

    It also isn’t always accurate as well – because it doesn’t know everything your work might be incorrect.

    CEO of OpenAI, Sam Altman tweeted last year: “ChatGPT is incredibly limited….it’s a mistake to be relying on it for anything important right now.”

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