In November of 2022, artificial intelligence research lab OpenAI released ChatGPT, a powerful AI chatbot that can generate conversational, human-sounding text in response to user prompts or questions. In a matter of seconds, ChatGPT can draft a college essay, create computer code, explain Keynesian economics to a sixth grader, or write lyrics for an 80s-style breakup song.
By January, 2023, ChatGPT was drawing more than 100 million monthly active users, making it the fastest-growing consumer application in history and inspiring both awe and trepidation around the globe. Industries from law to journalism to business are scrambling to determine how to capitalize on this dynamic and formidable new tool. In the meantime, AI research is hurtling forward. ChatGPT 4.0 is set to be released later this year, promising even greater capabilities.
Given that we’re only beginning to comprehend ChatGPT’s potential—it’s uses, misuses and it’s ripple effect on society—caution is understandable. Yet even as valid concerns are being debated, many educators see opportunity in this moment of profound disruption. With literacy and math achievement at the lowest levels in two decades, it's more urgent than ever for us to to adapt and leverage new technologies for the classroom.
Educators and students are embracing innovation. They are optimistic the tool’s remarkable strengths can meaningfully complement traditional instruction
This report by the Walton Family Foundation shares the results of the first national survey of teacher and student attitudes toward ChatGPT. The findings are clear: both educators and students are embracing innovation. They are optimistic that the tool’s remarkable strengths can meaningfully complement traditional instruction and even begin to help solve some of education’s more intractable challenges.
- Within a few months of its release, 51% of teachers reported using ChatGPT, with 40% using it at least once a week.
- 75% of students believe ChatGPT can help them learn faster and 73% of teachers agree.
- 91% of teachers and 87% of student believe technology is important to get students back on track from recent academic losses.
- 71% of teachers and 65% of students agree that ChatGPT will be an essential tool for students' future success in college and in the workplace.
You’ll also read stories of teachers and students who have begun experimenting with ChatGPT in their classrooms. Teachers are leveraging the tool to plan lessons, provide tailored feedback on student writing and help differentiate math support to learners at all levels. Meanwhile, students say ChatGPT is like having a personal tutor at the ready, one that is skilled at breaking down complex concepts into simple language. “I manipulated ChatGPT’s algorithm for my benefit,” says Kentucky-based high school junior Zachary Clifton. “It was like being able to access a new chapter of the textbook.”
In this report, we highlight education practitioners and thought leaders. They are meeting this pivotal moment with the kind of optimism and growth mindset we try instill in our children. Rather than reacting in fear or denial, they’re facing the challenge clear-eyed and ready to adapt. The AI revolution is here. These educators plan to make sure their students can take charge of how it unfolds.