Authoring is not exclusive to humans

The concept of plagiarism, though introduced to the British in 1620, and derived from the Greek word (plagion) and Latin words (plagiarism and plagiarius) meaning ‘kidnapper’, ‘plunderer’, etc., gained seriousness since the first case in which a poet named Martial accused Fidentinus for using his work without paying him. Most of you would have been exposed to this information via Turnitin blog titled, ‘5 historical moments that shaped plagiarism’. Martial wrote:

“If you’re willing that they be called mine, I’ll send you the poems for free,

If you want them to be called yours, buy this one, so that they won’t be mine.”

21st century being post plagiarism era with academic institutions, especially universities, running mandatory programs on Academic Integrity and accepting assessment tasks submissions only through Turnitin, we know that we should not encourage academic dishonesty in any way. Though Artificial Intelligence tools and ChatGPT are helping students to learn about fact-checking and critical thinking, it is essential to acknowledge that a response generated with the help of ChatGPT or AI tools automatically paves the way for the occurrence of plagiarism.

In the world of scientific publishers, as discussed in an article titled, ‘Artificial Intelligence and academic Integrity, post plagiarism’ composed by Sarah Elaine Eaton, publishers need not treat AI as co-authors as humans are responsible for searching and retrieving results that others have created. Having said that, that has not stopped them from acknowledging AI in the introduction, methods section, or acknowledgements of a scientific paper. However, in the academic world, there is a shift in perspective; a shift born out of a compulsion to curtail plagiarism and to uphold ‘Academic Integrity’.

Academicians and learners are required to not only update their professional knowledge about ChatGPT’s limitations, ethical concerns, and factual errors, but are also expected to AI proof the responses submitted by students for assessment tasks as initial responses without refinements that could assist in generating new patters would be detected easily by plagiarism checkers and other tools. It is a mandatory requirement to obtain permission from teachers or course coordinators before using AI tools or ChatGPT for assessments; a move to stop ‘Academic Integrity’ violation and a ‘Breach of Discipline’ by students. I used the opportunity of having attended a professional development session titled ‘An Introduction to AI and ChatGPT’ as an employee of TAFE NSW and created a video using these ideas for Records and Information Management course’s assessment task, which would provide visitors of my blogsite further information on the topic. Feel enlightened!

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