Maryland Today | Chat About AI On Campus

AI Basics

Is AI the next generation of computing, a convenient tool to take the drudgery out of research and research so you can focus on what matters? Is it a potential agent of chaos and misinformation? Is there anything you need to understand for future work? Is this all?

In a recent email to all faculty and staff, Senior Vice President and Provost Jennifer King Rice addressed the inevitable but unpredictable impact of such technology on college campuses, advocating for advanced chatbots. encouraged a “subtle and deliberate” approach to risk and reward in such systems. We exchange mountains of data to talk and write in seemingly human ways.

New AI-based large language models like Google’s LaMDA and OpenAI’s ChatGPT are becoming more and more commonplace and as they integrate with many of the technologies we use every day. , is expected to be extended in an elegant way, Rice wrote.

“The reality is that AI is taking hold. We need to adapt to these new technologies and, where appropriate, integrate these new technologies into our teaching and assessment practices,” she told faculty. I spoke. They also need to decide when to discourage the use of AI tools and how to respond to inappropriate use. ”

In a campus address last month, UMD president Darryll J. Pines made a similarly positive statement, asking ChatGPT to write the first few paragraphs of his speech. He noted that while higher education faces challenges from this emerging technology, Terps has a history of adapting to and using innovation to solve problems.

“ChatGPT and other AI systems may seem threatening to our work at first, but each other new tool, from calculators to laptops to Zoom, is changing how we do things. We encourage you to remember what has become integral to your business,” Pines said.

Maryland Today spoke with a range of other experts familiar with AI through recent experiments and years of research to find out how AI is currently being used on campus and how it can be a powerful educational tool. to understand how AI needs to be developed.

Environmental Science and Technology (ENST) Major Neil Gomez ’23 adopted ChatGPT in a class taught by ENST Associate Professor David Tilley, but learned new skills using the software.

Dr. Tilley suggested using ChatGPT to brainstorm ideas and topics. But I also use it occasionally to learn new things. When I wanted to learn Photoshop, ChatGPT taught me the basics of the software. But I don’t think it’s a completely reliable level of specificity. Sometimes it’s wrong, and sometimes it just seems like a hoax. You have to take it all with a grain of salt.

For example, I asked ChatGPT to use Python to find out which NBA players shot 5 or more free throws in a given season. You spat out a block of code, but didn’t define a function. So it showed me what to do, but it didn’t go very well. That being said, this is a pretty big game changer. Especially as the technology improves, it’s possible that in the future it will function more like a virtual tutor.

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