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AI in the Academic Setting

Resources and information about generative AI including ChatGPT

Science Librarian

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Kathleen Makarewicz


Generative AI tool usage and integration into academic and daily life is rapidly evolving.  Please check back here frequently for updated information (last update 9/29/23)!  If you have any comments or suggestions, please contact us at

Generative Artificial Intelligence

What is Generative AI?

Generative AI is a type of artificial intelligence that has been trained on massive amounts of data from which it "learns" patterns and structures.  It then can generate new data (text, images, etc.) when prompted by a user input. (Generative AI overview from Wikipedia)

Keep in mind: "...generative A.I., relies on a complex algorithm that analyzes the way humans put words together on the internet. It does not decide what is true and what is not."  When AI Chatbots Hallucinate—The New York Times. (2023, May 8). Archive.Ph.

What are chatbots?

Chatbot is a generic term for an artificial intelligence (AI) tool that uses natural language processing techniques to respond to user generated prompts (an AI text generator).  Chatbots have been created by Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and Stanford University to name a few and have been around in some form since the mid 1960's.  Remember ELIZA

History of Chatbots Infographic (up until year 2016)

ChatGPT is a chatbot created by OpenAI and was released to the general public as a "research preview" in late 2022.  It is a form of generative AI.  The usage and interest in ChatGPT has been an active subject in the scholarly and news media since then.  Microsoft, who is an investor in OpenAI, has added their tools to Azure OpenAI Service.

GPT-4 was released in March 2023 and is now integrated into Microsoft 365, the successor to Microsoft Office.  Microsoft calls its generative AI Copilot.

Other available AI text generators

The following are a few examples of products with features similar to ChatGPT or that use ChatGPT in the background.

Claude (Open beta; edits, rewrites, summarizes, classifies, extracts structured data, does Q&A based on the content, etc.)

The New Bing (uses ChatGPT, powered by GPT-4)

Google Bard


Wordtune Spices