The future of academia can be changed by AI language models like ChatGPT. Here are some other tools worth noting.
“ChatGPT will redefine the future of academic research. But most academics don’t know how to use it intelligently,” Mushtaq Bilal, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Southern Denmark, tweeted recently.
Academia and artificial intelligence (AI) have become increasingly intertwined, and as AI advances, academics may continue to embrace its potential or raise concerns about its dangers.
“There are two camps in academia. The first are artificial intelligence early adopters and the second are professors and academics who think AI undermines academic integrity, Bilal told EuroNews Next.
He places himself firmly in the first camp.
The Pakistani-born and Denmark-based professor believes that if used thoughtfully, AI language models can democratize education and pave the way for greater knowledge.
Many experts have pointed out that the accuracy and quality of results produced by language models such as ChatGPT are unreliable. The source material may sometimes be biased, limited or inaccurate.
But Bilal says that understanding those limitations, combined with the right approach, can make language models, especially for academics, “do a lot of quality work.”
More motivation to create ‘structure’
In order to create an academically competent structure, Bilal said, it is fundamental to master the incremental initiatives commonly used in traditional medicine and special education.
It involves breaking down complex tasks into smaller, more manageable steps and providing prompts or cues to help the individual successfully complete each one. The suggestions become progressively more complex.
In behavioral therapy, incremental motivation allows individuals to build their confidence. In language models, it allows “more sophisticated answers”.
In a Twitter thread, Bilal showed how he managed to get ChatGipt to submit an “exciting list” for a magazine article, using leverage.
In the demonstration, Bilal began by guiding the AI-driven chatbot with contextual knowledge related to the essay by asking about specific concepts relevant to the work, then about the authors and their ideas.
“I’m now asking ChatGPT to create an outline for a journal article that has a fair idea of my project,” he explains, adding that it could save him “20 hours of labor” before announcing the results.
“If I wrote a paragraph for each point on the list, I would have a good first draft of my essay.”
Further inspiration will enable ChatGPT and other AI models to help “democratize education,” Bilal said.
Some people have the luxury of discussing possible academic details or angles for scientific papers with Harvard or Oxford professors, “but not everyone,” he explains.
“If I were in Pakistan, I wouldn’t be able to meet Harvard professors, but I still have to come up with ideas. So instead, I could use AI applications to help me have intelligent conversations and shape my research.
Bilal recently got ChatGPT thinking and talking like a Stanford professor. Then, to test how accurate the results were, he asked the same questions to a real-life Stanford professor. The results were surprising.
ChatGPT is just one of the many AI-powered apps you can use for academic writing or to simulate conversations with famous scholars.
Here are some other AI-driven software selected by Bilal for your academic endeavors.
In Bilal’s words: “If ChatGPIT and Google Scholar marry, their child will be Consensus – an AI-powered search engine.”
Consensus is similar to most search engines, but what makes it different is that you ask yes/no questions, which are answered by the consensus of the academic community.
Users may ask for understanding about the relationship between concepts and the cause and effect of something. For example: Does immigration improve the economy?
The consensus answers that question by stating that most studies show that immigration generally improves the economy, providing a list of academic papers that have reached this consensus, and finally sharing a summary of the main literature we analyzed.
The AI-powered search engine is equipped to provide responses on six topics: economics, sleep, social policy, medicine and mental health, and health supplements.
Elicit, an “AI research assistant” according to its founders, also uses language models to answer questions, but its knowledge is based solely on research, “intelligent conversations” and brainstorming with a highly knowledgeable and proven source.
The software can find, summarize and extract key information without any keyword related papers.
Although language models such as ChatGPT are not intentionally designed to deceive, they have been shown to generate text that is not based on factual information and to include false citations to non-existent papers.
But there is an AI-powered app that actually provides real citations on published papers – Scite.
“This is one of the favorite ways to improve workflows,” Bilal said.
Similar to Elicit, when a question is asked, Scite provides answers with a list of all the papers referenced in the response.
“Also, if I make a claim and that claim is rejected or verified by different people or different journals, Scite will give me the exact number. So this is really very, very powerful. “
“If I taught any seminar on writing, I would teach how to use this app.”
“Research Rabbit is an incredible tool to quickly track your research. Best part: It’s free. But most scholars do not know about it. He tweeted. Bilal said.
Called the “Spotify of research” by its founders, Research Rabbit allows academic papers to be added to a “collection”.
These collections allow the software to learn about the user’s needs, prompting new relevant recommendations.
Research Rabbit also allows users to track a topic or author’s work and view a scholarly network of papers and co-authors to dive deeper into their research.
ChatPDF is an AI-powered application that makes reading and scanning magazine articles easy and fast.
“It’s like ChatGPIT, but for research papers,” says Bilal.
Users start by uploading the research paper PDF to the AI software and then ask it questions.
The app provides a brief summary of the paper and provides the user with examples of questions they can answer based on the full text.
What does AI promise for future research?
Bill Gates wrote, “The development of AI will be as fundamental as the creation of the microprocessor, the personal computer, the Internet, and the cell phone.” In the last post On a personal blog titled ‘The Age of AI Has Begun’.
“Computers have not had the impact on education that many of us in the industry had hoped for,” he wrote.
But in the next five to 10 years, I think AI-driven software will finally deliver on its promise to revolutionize the way people teach and learn.
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