Elliott Faculty on ChatGPT

February 1, 2023

Professor Alexa Alice Joubin speaks at an event

Professor Joubin

Alexa Alice Joubin, Professor of English, Theatre, International Affairs, and East Asian Languages and Cultures and Co-director of the Digital Humanities Institute was recently interviewed by GW Today on the opportunities and danger that AI may present in higher education. In a recent panel discussion introduced by Katrin Schultheiss, Associate Professor of History at the GWU Columbian College, Dr. Joubin noted that ChatGPT can "encourage mistaking synthesis for critical thinking", but also "encourage students to apply high-level editorial and curatorial skills" to generated material.
Professor Joubin was quoted in another interview with the GW Hatchet that “AI is no different than when the calculator was first invented,” she said. “It was disruptive, but it didn’t kill math. The typewriter was invented and was disruptive, but it did not kill writing. AI is just another tool." Instead of forbidding its use among her students, she now uses the software to teach “prompt engineering", or the development of prompts that generate the best answers from ChatGPT, in order to build on the skills involved in designing research questions.