Artificial Intelligence graphicAs artificial intelligence grows in its capabilities and availability, Metropolitan State University of Denver’s Generative AI Taskforce, also known as GAIT, strives to meet this new challenge for educators with pragmatic possibilities. 

The group, born out of a kickoff event hosted by former Provost Alfred Tatum, Ph.D., on Feb. 28, has been meeting biweekly to address what role that tools such as ChatGPT can play in education and how the University can ensure the authenticity of student work. 

Headshot of Jeff Loats, Interim Director of the Office of Online Learning

“AI tools are here to stay and will be changing rapidly,” said Jeff Loats, Ph.D., co-chair of GAIT. “How we respond to them speaks directly to the educational experience we offer and will deeply impact our assessment of student learning.” 

The task force, which consists of faculty members, staff members and administrators, has a mandate to provide suggestions to the provost and other University leaders on how to best address this latest technological change. Interim Provost Marie Mora, Ph.D., receives regular updates from the group, which are incorporated into policy discussions. 

GAIT members discuss issues relating to technology, teaching and learning, academic integrity, copyright, the nature of assessment and the difficulty of identifying generative AI work. The 18 members, who come from a host of disciplines and backgrounds, are spending considerable time reading the latest on AI and how educators respond across the country and globally. 

“We’re not here because we have all the answers,” said co-chair Shaun Schafer, Ph.D. “We’re here because we have a lot of questions about how generative AI will influence the future for our students, the institution and our society. We know our colleagues at MSU Denver need guidance and information about these tools.” 

Shaun Schafer, Ph.D.

A critical consideration for GAIT and everyone at MSU Denver, Loats said, is that AI will soon be embedded in all sorts of tools and software. Predictive text, ubiquitous in writing and email applications, is a good example of the way AI is becoming widely integrated, he said. 

Anyone at MSU Denver who is interested in providing feedback, resources, questions or ideas to GAIT is invited to fill out this Qualtrics form, which can be submitted anonymously, if desired. 

GAIT will produce a series of positions and recommendations on responding to generative AI. The first of those statements has been presented to the provost. 

“We are very lucky to be at a university that has made this a priority,” Schafer said. “We know it is moving quickly, and GAIT gives us the flexibility to craft a meaningful response.”