Cheating has always been around since the start of the educational system. The difference between now and past eras is that it is easier to cheat now more than ever through the use of technology. However, it is even easier to get caught with things like plagiarism detectors. Students can search for answers to their assignments on the internet, and often find an answer key word for word. In the past, when a student needed to copy a term paper, they would need to rely on their friends’ existing papers.
Now students could simply Google the prompt and copy and paste the answers for their prompt. Students could also access any article ever published on the internet, take their ideas, and find ways to reword them to fit their writing style to dodge detectors. Now they don’t even have to go to that much effort. Enter the artificial intelligence startup called QuillBot.
QuillBot calls itself “the smart thesaurus for sentences.” Users can go to the website and submit sentences or paragraphs. It will reword and restructure sentences or paragraphs within seconds without losing the original meaning. It boasts that its underlying technology is state-of-the-art in paraphrasing. It was previously thought that creative writing was immune to the recent trend of automation, but QuillBot disproves this theory.
When asked about the purpose of QuillBot, the COO of Keuji, Rohan Gupta stated “Similar to the way calculators have allowed for more accurate and efficient calculations in business and personal settings, QuillBot aims to allow these benefits in the writing space.”
The introduction of this technology is a double-edged sword when it comes to cheating in the educational system. It is almost comical that students and teachers will use the same technology to out-smart one another. Students can use QuillBot to reword others’ essays and claim it as their own content. However, teachers are using the website to thwart students’ attempts at cheating by changing up the wording of questions on their assignments, so students cannot merely look up the answers online.
The back-and-forth between teachers and students over the battle of cheating is starting to completely change the paradigm of the educational system. There will be a virtual arms race between teachers and students over the war on cheating as artificial intelligence continues to advance and replicate human intelligence in different domains.
When asked about QuillBot being used for plagiarism, Rohan said “Would you blame the inventor of the calculator for students cheating on their math homework? Obviously, we don’t condone the use of our tool for plagiarism, but QuillBot is a multipurpose tool that is being used for very productive purposes elsewhere.”
Within the educational landscape, businesses have been using QuillBot’s underlying technology to enhance education for students with learning disabilities. Outside of it, gaming companies use the technology to help create original game dialogue, which is typically a painstaking process.
A problem that could arise in the classroom from QuillBot is students losing their creativity in their writing. Instead of exercising their creative brain power, students can take the easy way out and use QuillBot. The product acts as a creative crutch for students and when you take that crutch away they could fail.
Only time will tell if it will merely be used enhancing one’s own writing or if it will be used to revolutionize the way businesses create written content. Either way, QuillBot illustrates how artificial intelligence will continue to change the world around us and no industry is immune.
You can access the QuillBot Smart Thesaurus for free at https://quillbot.com/.