Friday, February 24, 2023

ChatGPT Can Be A Superpower For Teachers Teaching Writing

The use of AI tools, such as ChatGPT, in education has been met with initial reactions of hesitance and fear that students may cheat and teachers may be replaced by machines. Although these concerns are understandable, employing a growth mindset and innovative, student-centered pedagogy can transform AI tools into a teacher's superpower.

Providing feedback on student writing is an essential part of the teaching and learning process that fosters a growth mindset and a lifelong learning ethic. However, grading a large number of student papers can be time-consuming and overwhelming for teachers. This is where technology can be of great help. With the assistance of ChatGPT, teachers can expedite the process of providing feedback to students on their writing.

ChatGPT is an AI language model developed by OpenAI that can generate text, answer questions, and assist with a variety of tasks. It is capable of producing high-quality responses to a wide range of prompts and can serve as a virtual assistant.

One way that ChatGPT can expedite the process of providing feedback to students is by automating the grading process. This can be done by training ChatGPT on a set of criteria that the teacher uses to evaluate student papers. For example, teachers can ask ChatGPT to identify specific types of errors, such as grammar or spelling mistakes, or to pinpoint areas where students need to improve. The more specific the prompts are, the better ChatGPT works.

The process involves entering the criteria into ChatGPT and pasting the student's writing into the system for analysis. ChatGPT will then provide feedback based on the entered criteria, which can take the form of a summary of the key points, suggestions for improvement, or a score.

Teachers can also use ChatGPT to provide more detailed feedback to students. For instance, they can ask ChatGPT to generate sample sentences that illustrate specific grammatical concepts or provide examples of how to structure a paragraph. ChatGPT can also explain complex concepts that may be difficult for students to understand, thereby helping them learn more quickly and improve their writing skills.

Using products like Google Docs for student writing and platforms like Google Classroom, teachers can use ChatGPT to expedite the feedback process. As students write, teachers can access their work, copy and paste it into ChatGPT, and receive real-time feedback that can be copied and pasted into the commenting functions of Docs and Classroom. Developing a system within Google Classroom that chunks the writing into multiple Assignments can help students better organize and process the feedback before submitting a final draft.

The use of ChatGPT in providing feedback can also be an effective way to build relationships with students. Teachers can review the feedback with students one-on-one or in small groups by pasting some student writing into ChatGPT and asking it to provide bullet point feedback for the students to take back and revise their writing.

Finally, ChatGPT can automate the process of providing feedback to a large number of students by creating a standardized set of comments or feedback that can be used for multiple students. This saves time and ensures that all students receive the same level of feedback. The teacher can then review the feedback provided by ChatGPT and make any necessary adjustments before sharing it with students. ChatGPT-generated comments can be saved in a comments bank for future reference if Google Classroom is used.

It is important to note that using ChatGPT or any AI tool for feedback has limitations. While ChatGPT can expedite the process of providing feedback to students, it is not a substitute for a human teacher. It may not identify all of the nuances of a student’s writing and may not provide personalized feedback tailored to individual student needs. Additionally, ChatGPT's effectiveness is only as good as the data, prompts, and criteria provided by humans.

As I wrap up this blog post, let it be known that I used ChatGPT to give me targeted feedback on each paragraph. I used the feedback to improve the writing, grammar and syntax. ChatGPT is my own personal assistant and proofreader. 

Take a look at the video below showing ChatGPT at work. The example shows a prompt where I asked it to give paragraph by paragraph feedback.

If you would like to bring me to your school for PD, workshops, a keynote, training or a follow-up on this or previous blogposts, click here to schedule an appointment to chat. My book, The Complete EdTech Coach: An Organic Approach to Digital Learning, co-authored with my wife Katherine Goyette is now available on Amazon. Click here to purchase. It is published by Dave Burgess Publishing. Be sure to follow the hashtag #OrganicEdTech and #CVTechTalk for updates.

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