ChatGPT and Other AI Tools: Implications for Teaching and Learning


See Guidance for Syllabus Statements about AI Use which includes examples from OSU faculty.

You can download AI icons as a Word doc, then copy and paste individual AI icons and their descriptions into your syllabi and into assignment instructions to easily indicate to students the policies for the course and assignment related to AI use.


Many of our students and colleagues have incorporated ChatGPT into their routines. Artificial intelligence can significantly change how we teach and how our students learn. How should syllabi and assignments change in the face of the availability of AI? What are key university policies on AI use and what do you need to know about AI@OSU? This diverse panel from key units on campus will provide guidance and exemplars of ways to incorporate AI into your classes and teaching.

Watch Video (unedited) The crisis, promise, and potential of AI in the classroom: Considerations for a new academic year.


Interest in the use of ChatGPT and other artificial intelligence (AI) tools in teaching and learning has grown enormously in recent months. ChatGPT is an AI language model trained on a large body of text data that can instantly generate written responses to questions and prompts. ChatGPT is the best known of hundreds of generative AI tools that can be used by faculty and students in higher education.

Students' writing practices have already been transformed by the network of digital tools in which they are embedded (Grammarly, online translators, Google Docs autocomplete, etc.). As use of AI tools becomes prevalent, it is important to consider when and how their use can enhance learning and when it may be wise to limit their use. This is a transformational opportunity for educators to incorporate AI tools and pedagogy; to prepare students to use them ethically, judiciously, and critically; and to expand the notion of digital literacy to include such tools. In this spirit, guidelines and resources are provided below to aid OSU instructional faculty in making informed decisions at the course level about the use of emerging AI tools. This information will be updated regularly.


Realize Opportunities

As the capabilities of AI tools grow and these tools become ubiquitous, additional creative uses of the tools are being employed in higher education as well as in the workforce. This will move us to new starting points and horizons in education. With these possibilities, come responsibilities and the need for an ongoing dialogue about the purposes of learning. A good starting point is to explore some AI tools such as ChatGPT and to consider how such tools could be used in your courses. Input from colleagues and students about these tools can be valuable. For example, see a Liberal Arts Perspective.

The following strategies may help you revisit course design and policies, teaching techniques, and assessments in the light of AI tools:

  • Include students in dialogue about course policies regarding AI use, and help them develop an awareness of their own learning processes. Consider providing low-stakes formative assessments, building in feedback loops, and developing activities that provide student reflection. Transparency and discussion with students about your course design, activities, and assessments can help them make connections between their learning and the importance of completing all processes and steps in assignments.
  • Consider redesigning assignments that are easily completed with AI tools. For example, ask students to apply concepts, solve problems, or analyze case studies in ways that integrate class discussions lectures, lived experience, and specific course readings.
  • Build students' critical thinking skills and commitment to lifelong learning, while keeping in mind the importance of digital literacies and the potential impact of AI on the learning process.


Consider Limitations

  • AI tools may provide incorrect, misleading or biased content. OpenAI itself has noted these and other limitations, and has offered useful recommendations for educators.

  • ChatGPT and other AI tools are not substitutes for the multitude of interactions that are essential to successful teaching and learning in higher education.

  • Detection tools exist but there is no 100% accurate way to determine whether all written content was produced by generative AI tools.

  • As instructors begin using AI tools to grade, there are concerns about grading multilingual learners equitably. The algorithms built into AI tools reflect the expectations of standard academic English. This can put multilingual learners at a disadvantage.

  • Pay for premium access is being introduced for many generative AI tools. This cost to students may create equity concerns if assignments require the use of this tool.


Action Item: Set Course-Level Expectations

Every element of an assignment or process is part of reaching an educational outcome. Consider modifying syllabus language to clearly state when and how students can utilize AI tools in course assignments and assessments. Setting clear expectations at the start of the term is essential in providing transparency and clarity with students regarding AI tools. See Guidance for Syllabus Statements about AI Use which includes examples from OSU faculty. The College of Business AI Policy also provides language that may be useful for course policies as well as guidance for students.


Student Conduct

If you are concerned that a student may have used AI inappropriately in your course:

  • The Office of Student Conduct & Community Standards encourages you to have a conversation with the student directly. Consider sharing your concerns, asking the student how they developed their submission, discussing why AI is not permitted on the assignment, and outlining the possible consequences of inappropriate AI use.
  • The unauthorized use of AI is a violation of the Student Code of Conduct. Should you determine that the student's action warrants an assignment or course grade deduction, you must file an Academic Misconduct Incident Report.
  • Through the academic misconduct process, students will meet with a College Hearing Officer to discuss the allegations and determine an appropriate outcome. The intent of this process is educational. It holds students accountable and helps address the root cause of their behaviors to prevent any recurrence.
  • For support, consider speaking with your department head or the Office of Student Conduct & Community Standards.
  • Please note: the university does not consider AI-detectors to be a reliable indicator of AI use. A high AI probability score can encourage additional scrutiny but does not definitively prove a student used artificial intelligence on an assignment.
  • OSU College Hearing Officers' Statement for Faculty


Office of Information Security Statement

Because OSU representatives have no recourse for holding externally hosted AI platforms accountable for data storage or use, and because these platforms may be hosted outside of OSU's legal jurisdiction the accidental or deliberate introduction of protected data could result in organizational, legal, or even regulatory risks to OSU and university employees. Unlike vendors who have undergone vetting before implementation in support of OSU business needs, OSU administrators lack the authority to enforce standard data governance, risk management, and compliance requirements upon publicly available AI platforms. Pursuant to these concerns the Office of Information Security (OIS) strongly recommends that OSU employees who wish to utilize externally hosted artificial intelligence tools for research, instruction, or administration, reach out to OIS for a brief consultation prior to proceeding.

The introduction of Sensitive/IRB Level II (e.g., FERPA-protected or proprietary) or Confidential/IRB Level III (e.g., PII or PHI) data to AI platforms is strictly prohibited. OSU instructors who assign AI-enabled assignments should also remind their students that they should avoid providing sensitive data to AI prompts. OIS recommends that instructors who wish to direct their students to utilize Internet-based AI tools include the following language in their syllabi:

"Because OSU does not control the online AI tools associated with the curriculum of this course, the Office of Information Security advises students to avoid entering Personally Identifiable Information (PII) or otherwise sensitive data into any AI prompt. For additional information, contact the Office of Information Security, or visit the OIS website at"


Support for Teaching Faculty

These rapidly emerging technologies present challenges and may best be faced through staying informed and in dialogue with colleagues, students, and OSU units that support teaching and learning such as Academic Technologies, Academic Success Center, Center for Teaching and Learning, Ecampus, and Writing Intensive Curriculum (WIC) Program.


Selected Resources

Artificial Intelligence Tools - Guidance from OSU Ecampus about the use of AI tools

The CTL blog AI series provides articles about AI by OSU authors

The Chronicle of Higher Education provides extensive coverage of developments with ChatGPT and other AI tools

AI Is Not Good Software. It is Pretty Good People by Ethan Mollick - A pragmatic approach to thinking about AI

The Amazing AI Super Tutor for Students and Teachers (TED Talk by Sal Khan) - Potential opportunities for students and educators to personally collaborate with AI tools (15 min.)


Some Other Popular AI tools

Citing Use of AI Tools

Course Policies and Syllabus Language

Futurepedia - An extensive AI tools directory that can be filtered by function

Generative AI: ChatGPT by OSU Academic Technologies

OSU Ecampus Winter '23 Faculty Lunch: AI Tools, Education & ChatGTP (slide deck)

Yes, We Are in a (ChatGPT) Crisis by Inara Scott - Inside Higher Ed opinion piece