An Exploration of Student ChatGPT Use in Higher-Education
Shawn Lough James Madison University
Leigh Mutchler James Madison University
After its release in November of 2022, initial reactions to ChatGPT included curiosity, amazement, fear, and suspicion (Cole, 2023; Denning, 2023; Roose, 2022; Stokel-Walker & Van Noorden, 2023). As educators, we would be naïve to think that students aren’t using this new tool to complete assignments to some degree (Usher, 2023), so it is up to us to help guide them in the appropriate use of generative AI resources in higher ed courses and to properly prepare students for the evolving workforce. To be able to implement the appropriate intervention that will encourage student learning and intellectual curiosity required for life-long learning, we must first know how they are using ChatGPT and other AI resources, when they are most likely to use it, and most importantly, whether they are using it to enhance their learning or to circumvent it.
This study will utilize mixed methods design. Students enrolled in a College of Business course at a large southeastern USA public university will be the target population. We will apply the lens of self-determination theory to explore the motivations driving student use of generative AI such as ChatGPT. We expect our findings to benefit students and educators by contemporizing the learning process and adapting to the impacts of generative AI within higher education.
Keywords: ChatGPT, Generative AI, Student Motivations, Self-determination Theory
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