In this newsletter we unpack the latest artificial intelligence (AI) that is being used including ChatGPT. This technology launched in November 2022. Within a week, there were one million users. Two months post launch, there were an estimated 100 million active users, making it the fastest-growing consumer application in history.1 Since then, there have been several updates; each iteration more powerful than the one that came before it. The progress has been so remarkable that people have started to ask questions about future implications.

What is ChatGPT?
ChatGPT (Chat Generative Pre-trained Transformer) is an AI chatbot developed by OpenAI. The developers introduce it: “We’ve trained a model called ChatGPT which interacts in a conversational way. The dialogue format makes it possible for ChatGPT to answer follow-up questions, admit its mistakes, challenge incorrect premises, and reject inappropriate requests.” In short, you can enter any open-ended question into the ChatGPT chatbox and it will generate a response that is surprisingly human.

How does it work?
ChatGPT has been built on a large language model or LLM as it is commonly called. An LLM is “an artificial intelligence system used to recognise and generate natural language… The LLM uses gigantic amounts of human language to train a ‘neural network’ to learn about a subject. For example, OpenAI’s GPT-3 uses more than 150 billion data items.”

Keen to try it out for yourself?

  • Here is a link for you to try out ChatGPT
  • Click on the ‘Try ChatGPT’ button
  • Sign up for an OpenAI account following the instructions
  • Type in your question and give it a go

As you use ChatGPT, you will notice that it clearly states that “while we have safeguards in place, the system may occasionally generate incorrect or misleading information and produce offensive or biased content.” It goes on to say that “it is not intended to give advice” and asks that users do not “share any sensitive information”.

So, what are people worried about?

1. Jobs
A study by OpenAI and the University of Pennsylvania indicates “that approximately 80% of the U.S. workforce could have at least 10% of their work tasks affected by the introduction of GPTs, while around 19% of workers may see at least 50% of their tasks
impacted. The influence spans all wage levels, with higher-income jobs potentially facing greater exposure.”

Much like the technological advances in other industrial
revolutions, we are seeing that these advances can replace certain tasks and can reduce the time taken for other tasks. AI may not replace people entirely, but it can make individuals more productive.

2. Creativity

Not only are there tools that generate text in natural language, but text to image generators. These tools excel at creating visual art.
This means that they generate an image based on the words you input. The result may look like an oil painting or a photograph or
an artist’s impression depending on your prompt.

If you are curious, you can explore Dall-E (also an OpenAI product), Dreamstudio or Midjourney.

This raises more questions: What is art? What is creativity? Are art and creativity a process? If we provided the prompt, do we own the outcome? This leads us on to the next issue.

3. Copyright

Humans cannot copyright AI-generated content. However, if you use the AI generated content as a part of something else, it can then be copyrighted.

This issue was highlighted when author, Kris Kashtanova, created a graphic novel entitled “Zarya of the Dawn”, using Midjourney. While the text and layout are protected by copyright, the images created in Midjourney are not.

4. Ethical questions
The question of copyright is one ethical question raised by this new technology, but the list of ethical dilemmas seems never ending.
Many people question whether it was wise to release ChatGPT to the public in the first place due to the fact that ”ChatGPT is not connected to the internet, and it can occasionally produce

5. Deep fakes
Another cause for concern is deepfakes, a phony image or video that looks real. As AI technology advances, deepfakes are becoming more convincing.

Each week, there seems to be some crazy hoax – the Pope in a Balenciaga puffer jacket and a bejewelled crucifix, or scandalous celebrity gossip with images and videos that may or may not be fake.

There are ways to determine deepfakes, but often detection takes place after it has been shared and the damage is already done.

One way to determine a deepfake is through the Reality Defender Website:

6. Plagiarism
Yes, it is true, classic plagiarism checkers can no longer be relied upon to ensure that your students’ work has not been plagiarised. Even the most up-to-date tools out there of which GPTZero is one, may still get it wrong.

7. Intelligence
The internet is full of opinions about the future of the human race. People worry that if we rely on AI to do our thinking for us, that future generations will not develop critical thinking skills. They also worry that if we rely on AI, that we will not know how to do anything ourselves.

Ask your scholars what they think:
Will AI affect the intelligence of future generations?
What do they see as the advantages and disadvantages of AI?
What AI are they already using?
What do they think we can do to ensure that these technologies are used appropriately?
Is there a school/class technology policy in place and if not, what should it include?

Where is the line – what is cheating exactly? While we all think that we know the answer to this question, the landscape has changed so much. It is a valuable question to delve deeper and unpack what academic integrity means and to ensure that you and your learners are on the same page. The plagiarism spectrum in the Turnitin bank of resources helps learners understand the full breadth of plagiarism.

Turnitin offer a valuable bank of resources offer a valuable bank of resources:

What professions are at risk?
The same study mentioned above3 found that the top five professions that appear to be most at risk are: translators, survey researchers, creative writers, animal scientists, and people who work in public relations. Professions that require some kind of human physicality, those who work in agriculture, athletes, mechanics, cooks, and restaurant staff are least at risk. The study also indicated that those roles where critical thinking is key, were less likely to be affected.

Going forward
Looking through the research and articles published to date, there is a general acknowledgment that this technology has the capacity to impact everyone, that it will improve over time and that it will have “notable economic, social, and policy implications.”3 We know that these technologies are here to stay so what can we do to keep our learners safe and remain current ourselves?


  1. Remind your learners that while these technologies are advanced, they make factual errors. It is up to them to fact-check every detail generated by AI.
  2. Remind your learners not to trust every image or video that they see. Give your learners the tools to cross-reference images and be able to identify deepfakes.
  3. Discuss the idea of responsibility and accountability. Unpack who is responsible for teaching and who is responsible for learning. What is cheating in this new world?
  4. Keep the lines of communication open so that your learners are able to approach you with their questions and dilemmas.
  5. Keep going! Now, more than ever, we need to equip our learners with the skills to navigate this complex world. They need a solid sense of self, strong relationships and skills to navigate a world where change is the norm. The last thing we want is for our young people to ask for life advice from ChatGPT…


  1. Don’t panic! These technologies are so mind-blowing that they can be overwhelming. Remember that they still need human input and verified data sets. What’s more, they make errors. For example, ChatGPT has been trained on information that predates 2021 so it is unable to provide answers for very current questions.
  2. Engage. This technology has so much potential that it would be unwise to ignore it. It is going to be here to stay. You can try out these tools at any time and you do not need any training.
  3. Become even more brilliant! ChatGPT and other new technologies push us to question everything – yet again. How can our assignments become more tailored, personal and inspired by local factors to ensure original thought? How can we make sure that our learners are engaged, wanting to learn, and not wanting to take the easy way out?

Take a look at this site for inspiration. Not only can you use ChatGPT with your students, but you can use it to help with your own class preparation – anything from generating a reading passage (for a specific reading age) to writing prompts and teaching vocabulary.

20 Ways Teachers Can Use ChatGPT to Make Their Lives Easier

If you are using the Achieve Careers LO Programme, the following information and activities are recommended:

  • GR 9 CAPS eBook – Section 3 (pp. 26– 27)
  • GR 10 LO Manual – Section 3 (p. 43)
  • GR 10 LO Manual – Section 6 (pp. 106–107)
  • GR 11 LO Manual – Section 4 (p. 73)
  • GR 12 LO Manual – Section 2 (pp. 31–37)
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