BOSTON (WHDH) - It’s not just a case of chatbots in the classroom – while some schools shy away from using ChatGPT, Boston University is embracing the new technology.

The university’s Faculty for Computing and Data Sciences has outlined a new policy for powerful AI systems like ChatGPT, designed for students, by students themselves.

“The policy was so important because it got us thinking about ways to use this technology that’s not harmful but instead, could be used as a stepping stone,” said student Natalie Clark.

The guidelines were developed in the classroom of ethics professor Wesley Wildman, the CDS Chair of Faculty Affairs who wanted to develop a policy to accurately evaluate students work.

“I needed to be confident that it was their work or if it wasn’t, I needed to be confident that I knew the sense in which it wasn’t,” Wildman told 7NEWS. “So, I needed to know how they were using generative AI.”

“The most helpful thing for me as the professor has been to listen to the students and they’ve said very clearly ‘We need help to understand how to use generative AI,” Wildman said. “We don’t want to harm our skillset, we don’t want other people to cheat.”

Students are required to credit AI technology whenever they use it and explain how and why they used AI tools. Students also must use the technology to build on their learning.

“It ups their game,” said Azer Bestavros, Associate Provost for Computing and Data Science. “So, now instead of just writing the first draft of let’s say a paper, you can start with whatever generative AI gives you and then tell me how to make it better.”

By requiring students to outline how they are using the AI tech, faculty members are hopeful it will boost learning while stressing there are consequences for cheating.

“Having this policy also tells a student ‘Hey, we’re on top of it – there are tools we can detect your doing it, so be forewarned,'” Bestavros explained.

Some students admit they relied on ChatGPT too much before realizing they were really cheating themselves.

“At first, I kind of used it as that crutch because it was so easy, but then I realized it’s not always right, for one, and two, I’m not actually learning what I need to learn,” said Oliver Sammuels, another BU student.

Students told 7NEWS that as the technology evolves, so should the policies across the board.

“Instead of shying away from this tool and being scared, if we can harness it as a tool that we can learn from and build off of, I think we just raise the level of what the basic skill level is going to be in our field of study,” Clark said.

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