Exploring AI Ethics in Advanced Education

by | Sep 21, 2023

The rapid use of artificial intelligence (AI) in higher education has raised many ethical concerns about the use of AI tools. As universities adopt these technologies more and more, it’s important to address the potential implications and establish guidelines for responsible use. The Observatoire international sur les impacts sociétaux de l’IA et du numérique (OBVIA) is leading the way in examining the ethical implications of AI integration. They advocate for thorough consultations and the creation of permanent working groups. However, clear and enforceable guidelines for AI use in universities are still a significant challenge.

One major concern from experts is the potential for bias, accuracy problems, and even plagiarism with text generators like ChatGPT and QuillBot. The Quebec Ministère de l’Enseignement supérieur and IVADO recently organized an event to address these ethical concerns specifically in higher education. However, there is a pressing need for permanent working groups and neutral spaces for discussion to develop comprehensive guidelines that can be adopted by the whole industry.

To address the ethical issues around generative AI, an expert committee is currently discussing and consulting. The committee is expected to release a report on the ethical use of generative AI in higher education soon. This report will be an important step toward establishing clear guidelines that universities must follow. By engaging in collective reflection and open discussions, universities can responsibly navigate the ethical challenges of AI integration.

Another significant challenge with generative AI tools is detecting plagiarism. Existing software is not reliable in this regard. To maintain academic honesty, universities must have clear policies on AI use that specifically address plagiarism. Without strong measures in place, there is a risk of unintentionally promoting intellectual dishonesty. By addressing this concern proactively, universities can ensure that AI is used ethically to enhance learning, not as a way to avoid academic rigor.

Recognizing the need for support in navigating the ethical use of AI, initiatives like LiteratIA, founded by Dr. Sandrine Prom Tep, are offering tools and assistance to instructors. This support will empower faculty members to understand AI integration, develop effective teaching strategies, and ensure ethical practices in their classrooms. By providing educators with the knowledge and resources they need, universities can encourage responsible AI use.

In conclusion, the integration of generative AI in higher education brings exciting opportunities and ethical challenges. To fully benefit from AI while maintaining ethical practices, the academic community must engage in collective reflection and establish clear guidelines for AI use. The ongoing discussions and consultations by the expert committee are a positive step in addressing these concerns. Additionally, universities must proactively combat plagiarism and preserve academic integrity. With the support of initiatives like LiteratIA, faculty members can navigate the ethical challenges of AI integration and ensure that AI remains a powerful tool for education. By prioritizing responsible AI use, higher education can embrace technology advancements while upholding ethical standards.