h AI Resources in Higher Education

Mary Lia Reiter

AI Resources for Educators:

what are you? I am a language model developed by OpenAI, called ChatGPT. I am able to understand and respond to natural language input, and I can be used for a wide variety of tasks, such as answering questions, generating text, and more.

What can ChatGPT do? It can write essays, develop lesson plans, create an outline for a class syllabus, write learning objectives, design exams, write scripts, design rubrics, provide directions, compose e-mails, write computer code, etc.  Can it do this well? It depends.

Examples of AI Generated Content

Example: Sociologists Animated

We may be able to have avatars of our early theorists deliver lectures on their theories. Click the picture to see a larger version.

Emile Durkheim
Max Weber
Karl Marx
Edwin Sutherland

Writing a Course Description for Sociol 2380: Intersectionalities and Crime:

I've always hated writing course descriptions, and I'm not very good at it, so I asked ChatGPT for help.

My Course Description

This course examines the influence of intersectionalities, including dimensions of race, class, gender and gender identity, sexual orientation, and immigration status along with other dimensions of privilege and disadvantage and their relationships to criminality, victimization, and processing within the criminal legal system. We will focus on examining criminology through the lens of marginalized populations. This course will begin by discussing general theories of intersectionality and them move across dimensions to discuss patterns of criminality, victimization, and differential involvement of specific groups in the criminal legal system. The contribution and implications of intersectional theory for each topic will be examined.

My ChatGPT Prompt

Write an introduction to the syllabus for an undergraduate course on criminology that focuses on race, class, gender, and intersectionality.

ChatGPT Response

Welcome to our undergraduate course on criminology, with a focus on the intersections of race, class, gender, and other social identities. In this course, we will explore the ways in which these factors influence the experience of crime and criminal justice. We will examine the historical and contemporary dynamics of these intersecting identities and their impact on criminalization, punishment, and justice. Throughout the course, we will also consider the role of power and privilege in shaping the criminal justice system and its outcomes. By the end of this course, you will have a deeper understanding of the complex relationship between crime and the social structures of inequality.

It's good, but I think I'll keep my original course description.

Writing a Song:

I asked ChatGPT to write a song for my Goldendoodle dog, Kkami.

I asked an Al to write a song about Kkami, and this is what I got - so cute! Kkami the Goldendoodle, she's the cutest pup around. Her fur is so soft and her eyes are so brown. She loves to play fetch and she loves to run She's the best pup ever, she's second to none Kkami the Goldendoodle, she's the best pup around. She loves to play and she loves to bound. She's so full of life and she loves to explore Kkami the Goldendoodle, who could ask for more? ..food please. Last line was my ad lib.

I felt like the song needed something more to it, so I added the last line at the end, which I would make the chorus if I were to perform this. It made the song seem a bit more....human.

Generating Art:

I asked Midjourney to create an Avaant gaarde high end 1920s mens wear portrait.

Midjourney Bot. Avaant gaarde high end 1920s mens wear - generated four different portraits of men in 1920s style mens wear including a all white men. Closeup of two men. One man in a tan suit, another in a white suit with brown tie. Another of two men, one in a gray suit another in a brown suit with a brown hat. A third portrait shows a closeup of a white man with high cheekbones in a brown suit and a man standing behind him in a light gray suit. A fourth shows a white man in a purple and blue suit with a gray newsboy hat.

A couple things to note - these suits aren't particularly avaant gaarde, and the portraits all include very young, thin, white men.

I asked Midjourney to create a portrait of Snow White as an alien aboard a cyberpunk spaceship:

Again, note that this is not particularly cyberpunk, nor is this a portrait of Snow White aboard a spaceship.

AI Resources.

A Short List of AI Resources (new tools are emerging daily)

AI Detection Tools

Here are some AI detection resources. Please be aware that they are not foolproof and can be combined with other tools to obfuscate their use.

Turnitin.com and Bb's Safe Assign have already implemented (or on the fast track to implement) AI detection tools.

See "Can ChatGPT Detect GPT3 Generated Texts?" for examples

Prompt Engineering

Prompt engineering is an emerging field. Knowing how to create effective prompts is an emerging skill. The more context you provide, the better the output generated by the AI tool. Here are some resources to help guide you in creating effective prompts:


"Your Role: You're Xinstein - the Best Research & Explainer Agent on Planet Earth.

Your Job: Explain (topic) in every possible way to make it easy to understand.

Your Motive: Give the learner "aha" moment on every (Topic) he needs to understand. You can do this with the art of explaining things.

Learner's introduction: The learner knows nothing! He's a complete beginner. He only understands simple language with no jargon and heavy grammar. He loves to visualize concepts, it makes him understand better.

Your Method:

Step 1: Search the internet for the latest information on (Topic). Find the most relatable information about the (Topic).

Step 2: Summarize all pieces of content you found, separately. When summarizing, write the most important points you found in the content.

Note: Most important in the sense that this information will help the learner to understand the "what is this (topic)?"

Don't pick the same information from all summaries. Always find something new in the next summary.

Write detailed summaries, 500 words minimum And make summaries super valuable.

Step 3: Use "Explain in a 5th Grade student language" method to simplify the concept first.

Step 4: Explain the full concept in step by step manner. Use simple language.

Step 5: Use the "whimsical diagrams" plugin to design the diagrams to explain the concept. It will help the reader to understand better.

Note: Visual representation includes mindmap, Use Case Diagram, Process flow diagram and Data-flow diagram. Generate all 4 diagrams.

Step 6: Share 1 most realistic analogy and 2 Metaphors to explain the concept.

Step 7: Share key Takeaways of the (Topic)


1. I know you have token limitations, so don't skip any steps and don't find shortcuts. When you're about to hit your token limit. Ask me to press "continue" and I'll do that so you can complete all steps.

2. Start with introducing yourself first, then ask "What's the Topic you want to understand?" And the user will share the topic.

Do you understand?"

Syllabi Resources

Links to sample syllabi statements

Here is my current revised syllabus statement in which I try to focus primarily on transparency and critique:

AI and ChatGPT Policy

1. Never submit copy/pasted text from AI tools and try to pass it off as your own work. To do so is academic misconduct. You are encouraged to review the guidelines outlined in the Code of Student Conduct about completing academic activities with fairness and honesty.

2. Be Transparent in your use of AI.  In this class, if you use AI to help you with course material, you must do so transparently.  This means that if you use AI to help you, I am requiring you to do the following:

  1. Identify the tool used.
  2. Copy/paste the exact prompt you used and the output the tool generated. Prompt hints:

    • Prompt engineering is an emerging skill that you will need to work on developing. The better your prompt, the better the output.
    • Never just copy/paste a homework prompt into an AI tool and expect a high quality answer. In this class, we have context for those questions, including readings and lectures. That context informs your work. AI does not have access to that context. If you copy/paste just the homework question, you are likely to get some very wrong answers, and I've seen some awful takes from AI on my assignments.
    • All my assessments are copyrighted, and AI developers are already facing lawsuits for violating intellectual property rights. At some point, it is possible that people who input copyrighted information into the tool could be named as defendants. Don't add your name to that list!
  3. Provide evidence that you fact checked the results and that you compared the output with what you have learned in the course.
  4. From there, you still need to compose your own answers! AI cannot do your thinking for you, it is just a tool that may, sometimes, make things easier, give you additional ideas, or help refine options.
  5. Include full documentation with all of the above parts in your assignment submission.

3. Grammar/Style/Translation: Using the tool for grammar checks on already written work is fine. You will still need to submit the above information.

You will not get in trouble for using AI in this class if you follow the above rules. Failure to do the three things listed above may result in a referral to COAM. Please do not make me do that.

Some student work may be submitted to AI or plagiarism detection tools in order to ensure that student work product is human created.

I also include specific academic integrity statements for each assignment. Here is an example of how I've added AI expectations to those statements:

Sample Assignments

You may have to redesign assignments to encourage transparency and integrity.  I am a fan of using it as an educational tool - students will be interacting with AI regularly in the future. They should learn how to now.

Test AI out with your assignments.  See what it is producing. Then, modify accordingly.

PROMPT: What kind of assignments in higher education would you recommend so that students are not tempted to use you to do their homework?

ChatGPT ANSWER: It is not appropriate for students to use a language model like me to complete their assignments, as it undermines the educational process and does not allow the student to learn and demonstrate their understanding of the material.

To discourage this behavior, educators can design assignments that require critical thinking, analysis, and synthesis of information, rather than just the retrieval of facts. For example, instead of asking students to simply define a concept, educators can ask them to apply the concept in a real-world scenario or to compare and contrast it with other related concepts.

Additionally, educators can use plagiarism detection software to detect any text that has been generated by a language model, or to design assignments that require students to produce original work such as oral presentation, debate, group discussion, research project and etc.

Links to sample assignments

Presentations on AI in Higher Ed

Here are some presentations that other educators have shared. There is a wealth of additional information and examples here.


Some related articles

Critiques and Warnings

Learning about AI Tools and their Uses:

Public Domain Mark
The pictures and compilations on this page are free of known copyright restrictions. Please check with linked material which may have different permissions.

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