Can students use AI to write college admission essays?

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There’s no getting around it: artificial intelligence (AI) is available to students looking to enter college. More and more students may use Chat GPT or other programs to write their college admissions essays.

What effect does this have on their chances of getting into college? What are universities doing about AI when it comes to college admission?

Stacy Leeds, Dean of the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, joined Arizona Horizon. She discussed why the College of Law plans to allow the use of these programs.

“Every university and every college within universities are trying to sort this out,” Dean Leeds said. “It really accelerated last fall and everyone is trying to figure out what their policies are going to be, what they’re going to allow and what they’re going to prohibit.”

The College of Law will soon allow prospective students to use artificial intelligence while crafting their admissions materials. They would be the first in the nation to permit the use of generative AI in applications.

“We decided to allow, affirmatively, our prospective students to use this because we knew that they were using a variety of tools, so this was just one more in their toolbox,” Dean Leeds said.

The announcement comes as AI programs advance rapidly and boom in popularity.

Dean Leeds said that most people don’t know that many law school applicants can afford to hire third-party consultants to help them craft their applications.

“We thought it would open the playing field if we opened up that toolbox and allowed AI to be one of the things that they might consult,” she said.

According to ASU Law’s website, prospective students will be required to disclose if they used AI programs while preparing their admissions materials, according to Leeds. The law school also asks applicants to disclose whether they were assisted by a third-party consultant.

Students will be required to certify that all information contained in their application is accurate.

As of right now, no other school at ASU is currently planning to greenlight AI use by students.

Stacy Leeds, Dean of the Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law

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