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AI generative tools are a class of algorithms that generate new and unique outputs, such as  text, images, or music, based on input data or parameters. These tools can be used in various disciplines to create new and innovative  products, automate tedious tasks, and make predictions or simulations.

Recently, a new set of tools using these algorithms has become much more widely available. One of the most commonly discussed and popular is ChatGPT which has been developed by Open AI  and provides text output based on a prompt. However, many other AI generative tools automate content generation across all different fields, music, voice, imagery, computer code, etc.

With the rise of availability and popularity, we see the usage of thesetools by students to complete assignments, provide answers to tests, generate creative content, etc. Many possibilities exist for using and examining these tools related to education efforts and inquiry. However, across the country, instructors and institutions see a rise in using these tools to engage in academic misconduct without proper citation or attribution to these tools. 

The University of Utah, in partnership with the Center for Teaching Excellence, is developing and revising policies regarding using these tools for our students. Below are some strategies and resources that can guide your instructional practices and assignment development to help thwart academic misconduct and increase deep learning.

Course Design and Pedagogy

  • Discuss expectations for academic integrity, and remind students of the University’s policies. Indicate that using these tools to autocomplete work is academically dishonest, violates the University policies, and could possibly lead to various repercussions.
  • Add a statement in the syllabus that explicitly indicates that using an AI content generator to produce content that is turned in for an assignment or test without being explicitly allowed to do so is academic misconduct.
  • Discuss with the students how using the tools sometimes subverts the learning process and undermines why they are taking the class, pursuing a degree, and obtaining an education.
  • Provide incentives for the behaviors and habits that are associated with deep learning. Review your grading criteria and rubrics to ensure you’re setting your students up to adopt robust learning strategies. Utilize reflection and metacognition to have students respond to assignments that indicate that they have done more than follow prompts.


Sample Syllabus and Department Statements

  • Sample Syllabus Statement Regarding Academic Misconduct and Use of Generative AI:
    • It is expected that students will adhere to generally accepted standards of academic honesty, including but not limited to refraining from cheating, plagiarizing, misrepresenting one's work, and/or inappropriately collaborating. This includes the use of generative AI tools that has not been cited or use documented or authorized. Students will also be expected to adhere to the prescribed professional and ethical standards of the profession/discipline for which the student is preparing. Any student who engages in academic dishonesty or who violates the professional and ethical standards for the profession/discipline for which the student is preparing, may be subject to academic sanctions as per the University of Utah’s Student Code: 
  • Sample Dept Statement from Department of Writing and Rhetoric


Assignment Design

  • Written assignments could reference class materials and notes or sources unavailable on the internet. For example, “Specifically refer to two or more authors discussed in class.” 
  • Have students respond to visual content in addition to the written prompt.
  • Because these AI tools have used historical data to train their responses, you could reference current events or discussions in your field.
  • Have students reflect on how the assignment connects to their knowledge or personal experience.
  • Combine an assignment with a requirement that students submit an audio file, podcast, video, speech, drawing, diagram, or multimedia component.
  • Group and space out written assignments with individual elements that build on each other. Require  students to write responses by hand. This old-school method is a sure way to eliminate the use of these tools.
  • Assignments could require citations. Currently, these systems don’t handle source attribution well.
  • Preview the AI generator response to a prompt so that you are familiar with the output and can more readily identify if an AI generator generates the student work.
  • Also make use of and incorporate ChatGPT. For example, have students generate a ChatGPT response to a question and then have them write an analysis of the strengths and weaknesses response.
  • Resources shared in 2/24/23 Instructional Responses to Generative AI workshop


Utilize some Detection Systems

While no detection system is perfect, there are several good ones out there that are designed explicitly for ChatGPT. The most widely used detectors are ChatGPT Zero, Hugging Face or GTLR.




Last Updated: 2/27/23