Sybil Low by Sybil Low

After a Redditor decided to go through the Teaching Philosophy Facebook group, they found out about a disturbing trend among students. Apparently, most of them (23/35 learners) use ChatGPT to complete their assignments. And they are not hesitant to admit it if they are promised to be safe from any consequences.

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Key Takeaways:

  • AI usage in education is on the rise, with students using tools like ChatGPT for assignments, highlighting the need for updated academic policies.
  • The use of AI can further deepen existing inequalities in education, highlighting the importance of fair access and opportunity.
  • Educators are considering adapting to AI by teaching ethical usage and creating AI-resistant assignments to maintain academic integrity.

We all know that AI chatbots are getting more and more popular. And it’s no secret that many students use it for studying. Nonetheless, while some use AI like ChatGPT to just help them out when they feel stuck, others are not afraid to get it to do their whole homework. And since we came across the Reddit post showing that in the class of 25 people, 23 students can admit to using ChatGPT to complete their assignment, we just can’t stop thinking about it.

23 of 25 Students Admit ChatGPT Use After Professor's Amnesty Offer
Image of the students’ emails admitting to ChatGPT use shared by jamiejamiee1 on r/ChatGPT via

But we aren’t the only ones seemingly disturbed by this trend. The discussion under the Reddit post shows many people concerned over current educational tactics that are simply not up to date with modern technologies.

Historical Perspective on Academic Dishonesty

Some people weren’t so surprised to see that generative AI opened new ways for student cheating. After all, this practice has been out and about for decades. And even when there wasn’t Internet in sight, students still found workarounds not to do their assignments or complete tasks. And even when we can find this kind of AI cheating situation to be dystopian, some think that there were far worse cheating practices back in the day.

“Far more dystopian are the “paper mills” that used to dominate cheating before GenAI. For a fairly modest fee (ending up well below minimum wage for the writer) you could pay someone with a degree, likely from a non-western country but Western-educated, to ghost-write your university papers with the expectation of a solid B or better.
And let’s not forget Chegg, either, which basically amounts to crowdsourced cheating much of the time. Or group chats on other platforms.
Cheating has been rampant, forever. “

But the issue runs even deeper and is more entrenched than the paper mills. Before the intricate algorithms of today, there were simpler, albeit equally effective, methods of cheating. or example, other Redditor recalls printing out essays found online for the whole class to submit.

byu/jamiejamiee1 from discussion

All this proves, is that this teacher-student dynamic, when the one cheats and the other tries to find it out, is as old time. Most learners try to do everything to study smarter but not harder, and that’s really the main reason why ChatGPT became an answer to all questions for many students.

Socioeconomic Factors and Fairness

There were also some discussions of the influence of AI on socioeconomic. It seems that there are people who think the use of AI could worsen existing inequalities if not addressed properly.

Others also suggested that those with more resources can gain an unfair advantage due to cheating and that’s why AI seems like such a lucrative option to other students. If the game is already unfair, why should you be the one to follow the rules?

“I got to party at an Ivy League once & the entire frat was doing this. Just a bunch of rich kids sitting around talking about their upcoming vacations & how they were paying guys in India or abroad to do their work.
It was single-handedly one of the most radicalizing moments of my life. I had friends who grew up in section 8 working 40 hr weeks while taking 20 credit hours at state universities they could afford. The effort invested to be where they are being magnitudes different.
Yet, I realized my friends would basically ALWAYS lose out to the rich frat/sorority kids if you were ever an employer just looking at resumes. Why would you ever pick the exhausted decent GPA state schooler over a well-rested honors Ivy leaguer who could network for internships far more easily & just spend college building a resume full of activities?”

This of course made the question of what kind of opportunities are left for those, who choose to study and work hard to get to their dreams.

“I went to my cousin’s college graduation at a state school, and they had an award like valedictorian but basically a “crawled over glass to earn this” award. It went to an ex-foster kid who earned their GED and then went to college part-time while working full-time and adopting their siblings out of foster care while maintaining a b average. And I thought to myself, my God, what someone like that could do with a tenth of the opportunity and support wasted on the average Ivy League graduate.”

Adapting Educational Strategies and Promoting The Ethical Use of AI as a Tool

The rant on Reddit attracted a few educators who decided to weigh in on the issue. Surprisingly, they admitted to being more for adapting to AI usage rather than banning it.

“Long time teacher here. IMHO the way to go is to:
1) teach students how to use AI ethically
2) ask them to document their usage
3) make your assignments AI resistant.”

When asked what assignments could be called “AI-resistant” they already had an answer:

“Examples could be —integrating class discussion notes into written reflection — asking students to verbally explain their projects (like defending a dissertation), answer questions about the content, including their process — asking students to illustrate their understanding through multi-modal creations (utilizing a combination of image, text, audio etc). Yes I know AI can do this. — asking students to write/research etc during class to gauge their skills”

Some teachers already have a plan on overcoming AI, others are more drawn to integrating AI into their study plans though. As was mentioned “…When 23/25 students are using it, stop trying to police it and start trying to figure out how to help students use it properly.” Yet, it is important to specify what “using it properly’ means at all. One Redditor draws an analogy between using ChatGPT and consulting a “dedicated friend and research assistant,” emphasizing that the final work must be authentically the student’s own.

They also introduced a method of how one could prove that the result of their work was mostly their own in the end. And it is by sharing AI dialogues with educators. Even though this could raise some privacy issues the student can easily delete the chat altogether, it is one of the working strategies for making sure that academic integrity is protected. Mostly, Reddit users agree that schools should update their rules to include AI, making sure students use it responsibly and honestly.


The Reddit debate we all just witnessed only proves the point that there’s a desperate need for a change in modern education. As the traditional teacher-student dynamic faces new challenges, it’s clear that mere prohibition won’t make it. Instead, a balanced approach, blending ethical AI usage with innovative, AI-resistant assignments, appears to be the way forward. This conversation has only just begun, and it’s time for educators, students, and policymakers to collectively chart a course that blends AI’s potential with the core values of education.


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