Guidance on the use of Artificial Intelligence

An email sent to all staff from Professor Jeff Grabill, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Student Education, and Professor Nick Plant, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Innovation, on 22 September.

Dear colleagues,  

It’s rare these days to read the news without seeing some new Artificial Intelligence development, and there has been both concern and excitement about the impact it will have on higher education.  

There is no question that these technologies are powerful, fast-moving, and transformative. We believe that AI can be used effectively and legitimately across all types of teaching, research and administration. 

However, there are clear risks and security concerns with the inappropriate use of AI, and all staff should make themselves familiar with them. It is also true that we must protect academic integrity and ensure any use of AI complies with our ethical standards, University regulations and our values. 

Developments in AI are moving at pace and, as such, we will need to be responsive and agile in our approach across a range of activity.  

Over the summer, two working groups made up of academics, professional services colleagues and students were convened to produce initial guidance for the responsible use of AI tools in research, teaching, and administrative work.  

The guidelines are a first step, and the intention is to help you think through issues related to the outputs of AI tools and how to approach teaching, assessment and research.  

More detailed guidance is being developed for specific areas of activity including: research and publication, teaching and learning, PGR supervision, resources and training. This will be made available as soon as possible.  

More detailed student guidance, which is being developed in conjunction with our students, is forthcoming as well.  

To support the ongoing work, Faculty representatives are currently organising sessions with colleagues to understand particular concerns by discipline to inform more detailed guidance and needs for professional development. A programme of staff training and development is in process and will be available soon.  

Please read the guidance carefully and know that this work is ongoing as we continue to think together about how to best use these tools to support research and innovation, knowledge exchange and student education activities.   

We are planning an AI student education webinar at which colleagues will have the opportunity to find out more and raise questions. We will communicate the date and time of the webinar shortly.  

Thank you for your support.   

Professor Jeff Grabill, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Student Education  

Professor Nick Plant, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Innovation  

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