Generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) is a category of technology that creates new content in response to prompts. Content can be in the form of text, image, audio, video and software code. Content produced can be very difficult to distinguish from that produced by humans. Where human brains learn based on relatively few examples, these tools have been trained on massive data sets of human created content. GenAI tools, including ChatGPT, work by predicting what a human would produce in response to an input.

October 2023 - This webpage replaces two prior pages, ChatGPT FAQs for Faculty and for Students that were first published in February 2023.

This new page provides resources developed by the Gwenna Moss Centre for Teaching and Learning, the University Library, and the Academic Integrity Strategist.

Guidelines at USask

In Spring 2023, guidelines for assessment practices and recommendations for ethical use were shared with the campus community.

GenAI is impacting everything from professional practice to educational practice, and it has a significant impact on assessment of learning.

As educators have the responsibility for assessment decisions, USask has not placed limits on instructional decisions about GenAI so that contextually-appropriate assessment decisions can be made by educators.

Complete the new module - Understanding Generative AI, now included in the Academic Integrity Tutorial.

ChatGPT is one of thousands of GenAI tools and more are under development. Many of the considerations related to ChatGPT apply equally well to other tools. You are advised to consider issues of equity, accuracy, bias, privacy, copyright and authorship no matter the tool. 

Table last updated - December 20, 2023

Considerations specific to use of ChatGPT:

Equity

The free version is known as ChatGPT 3.5; the $20/month version is ChatGPT 4.0 and has greater processing power, more nuance and accuracy, and the capacity to process images. Thus, those willing and able to access the paid version, have more benefits available to them than those who do not.

Accuracy Outputs may contain factual errors and other inaccuracies. The term “hallucinations” is used in reference to incorrect yet convincing outputs that GenAI produces. It is important to verify and fact-check content using reliable sources.
Bias

ChatGPT 3.5 (the free version) responds to a prompt using words, phrases, sentences and paragraphs as human writers would or could. Outputs may contain biases and prejudices that appear in human-produced content upon which the tools were trained. Documented instances of bias in ChatGPT include gender, race and sociopolitical biases. Non-experts may have difficulty identifying these issues in what ChatGPT produces.

Privacy

An email address and phone number are required to set up a free ChatGPT account. This personally identifiable information is provided limited protection under the privacy policy. Input to ChatGPT is not protected in the Terms of Use and is used in providing and maintaining the service. This may mean that what you input is used in providing output to others.

Copyright

It is currently unclear whether ChatGPT outputs can be protected by copyright. However, if a person modifies or adds to the output – and exercises a sufficient amount of skill, judgement or creativity in doing so – then the material is likely to gain some copyright protection. 

Inputting any substantial amount of copyrighted text into ChatGPT could constitute a copyright infringement if done without permission of the copyright owner

Authorship

To be an author means to take responsibility for the work produced. Tools like ChatGPT cannot take such responsibility. It has been widely agreed in the international research community that no GenAI, including ChatGPT, will be accepted as accredited author on a research or scholarly paper.

Resources

Last updated - October 16, 2023

Educators are making intentional use of ChatGPT and other forms of GenAI in their teaching and assessment. You may find strategies are being shared about acceptable use in your specific disciplinary communities.

Are you new to GenAI? 

Complete the new module titled "Understanding Generative AI" in the Student Academic Integrity Tutorial. The new module will take about 45 mins, the whole tutorial is about 3 hours.

Articulate expectations for acceptable use of GenAI

Use GenAI to support teaching 

Teach with GenAI 

Prevent misuse of GenAI 

  • Revise or redesign your assessment to focus on evaluative thinking instead of recall, basic application, or summary.
  • Consider methods of assessment that allow you to observe or directly ask questions.
  • Require students to complete the Academic Integrity Tutorial or update their knowledge with the new module “Understanding GenAI”.
  • Show students the kinds of uses you would make and explain why.
Last updated - October 16, 2023

Conversations about if and how to use GenAI tools in education and research is evolving. Your instructors are actively reflecting on whether these tools can or should be incorporated as part of their teaching and assessment.

Avoid Academic Misconduct

Work through the Academic Integrity Tutorial

Read and understand the Academic Misconduct Regulations

  • The use of GenAI may or may not constitute academic misconduct. It depends on what the instructor has said is permitted and how you present the authorship of the work.
  • Confirm expectations with your course instructor. Do not assume all instructors are handling this in the same or similar ways.
  • Check with your instructor if you intend to use GenAI to support your learning (e.g., as part of brainstorming, as a study aid, as means to generate images.).

Document any use of GenAI 

  • Check citation styles guides for how to accurately cite outputs produced by GenAI.
  • If you have questions about authorship practices in your discipline, field, or profession, speak to your instructors, professors, or supervisors.

Read the Library's guide - Writing Help: ChatGPT and Other GenAi Writing Tools

Detection Tools

IMPORTANT: Detection tools are not approved for use at USask

Tools to detect text or other outputs produced by GenAI are not reliable. False accusations can be devastating, and the detection tools are known to disproportionately generate false positives for those writing in an additional language.

Students, like faculty and others, whose intellectual property have been submitted to third parties without their permission would be able to complain about a violation of copyright.

 

For Academic Misconduct concerns involving GenAI: 

Refer to the Academic Misconduct Regulations and the administrator in your College or School for guidance. Relevant sections for GenAI concerns may relate to unauthorized/unpermitted assistance and/or plagiarism. See excerpts added below. 

Regarding unauthorized/unpermitted assistance, see P.6, point g, (i):
"Failure to observe any stated rule with regard to the procedures used in an examination, assessment or an activity undertaken for academic credit where such a failure could result in the student gaining relatively greater credit"
Regarding plagiarism, see P.7, point l, which states that plagiarism is:
"the presentation of the work or idea of another in such a way as to give others the impression that it is the work or ideas of the presenter.
Adequate attribution is required. What is essential is that another person have no doubt which words or research results are the student’s and which are drawn from other sources. Full explicit acknowledgement of the source of the material is required."

Support

Advice and Guidance

Academic Integrity - Academic Integrity Strategist, Susan Bens

Teaching with GenAI - Gwenna Moss Centre for Teaching and Learning

Copyright information - Copyright Coordinator, Kate Langrell

Privacy information - Legal Counsel, Access and Privacy Officer, Rayelle Johnston