Thinking twice before relying on AI: advice from Leighton Park School

Posted on 9th Jul 2024 in School News, Technology

Head of Academic teacher cautions students against the temptation of using AI in their assignments

Alex Wallace, Deputy Head - Academic at Leighton Park School, cautions students against the temptation of using AI in their assignments and shares advice on how to succeed without relying on it.

A recent study by the University of Reading has revealed that university markers were unable to distinguish between AI-generated and human-written exam papers, underscoring the real threat that AI poses to the integrity of education if not kept in check.

Using AI to generate assignments may seem like an easy way to complete school assignments and tasks, but it undermines your learning process and the development of critical skills that you will need when entering an extremely competitive global economy after school. It is also considered academic dishonesty and could result in severe consequences or lead to your exclusion from future universities.

Moreover, students shouldn’t presume they will always have access to generative AI. As technology evolves and regulators become more aware of the risks associated, advanced platforms will be developed to detect AI-generated content or new regulations will be established to prohibit its use, possibly in the workplace too. Students who become overly reliant on its use could very well be doing themselves a disservice and be a step behind those spending time developing their skills authentically.

Students should strive to become independent, critical thinkers who are well prepared for future challenges without relying on AI to carry them through.

I always encourage my students to maintain the integrity of their academic work and ensure they gain the most from their educational experience by authentically engaging in assignments. While AI can be a helpful tool for research and learning, I advise using these technologies to aid understanding, not to complete assignments. Seeking help from teachers, classmates, or the tutoring resources available at the school is always preferable.

Understanding a school's policies on academic dishonesty is also crucial, as using AI to generate assignments could be a violation of these policies.