Can Large Language Models (LLMs) like ChatGPT help create OERs in a more sustainable way?

Teachers are using ChatGPT for schools more than students, says a recent survey carried out by the Walton Family Foundation. They asked 1002 k-12 teachers and 1000 students (ages 12-17) if they are using ChatGPT: 51% of teachers replied they used it against 33% of students.

Most of the teachers agreed that ChatGPT helped them by providing background knowledge for the lessons and giving them creative ideas. In the study they found that only 10% reported having caught their students using ChatGPT in cases where this had not been allowed for, while 38% of the teachers reported having allowed their students to use it.  

As we know, the pandemic had a strong negative impact on students all around the world. Could LLMs help the students in regaining what they’ve lost? 

And what about OER? 

Following a recent post by David Wiley, LLMs could help teachers and instructional designers in general, in producing information content in a very rapid and cheap way and moreover support them in creating drafts of educational pathways or training courses.  Wiley foresees a possible cost reduction in the production of information materials, which means that it could have a good impact also on courses that have few students and small budgets. In the last few months (ChatGPT was released to the public on November 22), there has been a lot of discussions on how outputs of LLMs are not “original works”, and for this reason, they cannot be copyrighted. What does this mean for authors and traditional publishers? One point of view is that they can save money using this software, another is that they won’t be providing original content. Wiley sees the need for the future instructional designer to “immediately update their curriculum to leverage the existence of these tools”. What do you think?

Join the ENCORE+ Network Eventon the 21st of March to explore the new challenges and opportunities brought by LLMs to the OER ecosystem. 

More information about the event, and registration form can be found here. 

Photo by Headway on Unsplash

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