OpenAI Launches New AI Text Classifier to Curb Academic Dishonesty

We live in a world where technology is advancing faster than we can keep up. With OpenAI’s new language, this is truer than ever- and we can see just how it is taking over the internet.

The AI system can write just about anything on command, synthesizing a surplus of information in seconds. But with the threat of academic dishonesty, OpenAI has launched a new AI Text Classifier for educators to detect the presence of AI. Though the tool has some kinks to work out, despite its launch on February 1st, 2023. The head of OpenAI’s alignment team has noted the imperfections in AI-written text: “it will be wrong sometimes”. As with most technology, this is only a tool, but this new technology is controversial in practice, changing the interface of tech and education in real time.  The use of ChatGPT among students, particularly teenagers and college students, has sparked a conversation in schools and colleges around the country. While some have blocked its use in classrooms, others have opened access to educators who want to use it as a teaching tool. Some schools have even considered the expansion of its use to train students to be better critical thinkers and to let students use it for idea generation or as a personal tutor. Higher education institutions around the world are also in contention about the use of AI technology, with some prohibiting its use entirely and students risking severe penalization if caught.  OpenAI’s detection tool has its limitations, but it’s not all bad news. In addition to deterring plagiarism, it could help detect automated disinformation campaigns and other misuse of AI to mimic humans. The longer a passage of text, the better the tool is at detecting if an AI or human wrote it. But how the algorithm works in detection, is not entirely known. As the world becomes increasingly technology dependent and digital, it’s important that we as individuals and a society understand the potential dangers and limitations of AI, while still embracing its power and potential for good.

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