ChatGPT as an Educational Tool: Opportunities, Challenges, and Recommendations for Communication, Business Writing, and Composition Courses
Keywords:artificial intelligence, business writing courses, ChatGPT, composition courses, communication courses, Turnitin
This empirical study examines ChatGPT as an educational and learning tool. It investigates the opportunities and challenges that ChatGPT provides to the students and instructors of communication, business writing, and composition courses. It also strives to provide recommendations. After conducting 30 theory-based and application-based ChatGPT tests, it is found that ChatGPT has the potential of replacing search engines as it provides accurate and reliable input to students. For opportunities, the study found that ChatGPT provides a platform for students to seek answers to theory-based questions and generate ideas for application-based questions. It also provides a platform for instructors to integrate technology in classrooms and conduct workshops to discuss and evaluate generated responses. For challenges, the study found that ChatGPT, if unethically used by students, may lead to human unintelligence and unlearning. This may also present a challenge to instructors as the use of ChatGPT negatively affects their ability to differentiate between meticulous and automation-dependent students, on the one hand, and measure the achievement of learning outcomes, on the other hand. Based on the outcome of the analysis, this study recommends communication, business writing, and composition instructors to (1) refrain from making theory-based questions as take-home assessments, (2) provide communication and business writing students with detailed case-based and scenario-based assessment tasks that call for personalized answers utilizing critical, creative, and imaginative thinking incorporating lectures and textbook material, (3) enforce submitting all take-home assessments on plagiarism detection software, especially for composition courses, and (4) integrate ChatGPT generated responses in classes as examples to be discussed in workshops. Remarkably, this study found that ChatGPT skillfully paraphrases regenerated responses in a way that is not detected by similarity detection software. To maintain their effectiveness, similarity detection software providers need to upgrade their software to avoid such incidents from slipping unnoticed.
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