A company has created a plagiarism detection tool that it says can find out if essays are written using artificial intelligence tools like Chat GPT. US-based Turnitin claimed its tool can identify the use of AI software with “98 per cent confidence”, The Telegraph reported. The software analyses a written piece to assess how many sentences have been sentences may have been generated by AI, the outlet further said. However, it has triggered debate among universities whether to use the tool to detect cheating.
“Turnitin’s technology has high accuracy and low false positive rates when detecting AI-generated text in student writing,” Annie Chechitelli, the company’s chief product officer, was quoted as saying by The Telegraph.
“To maintain a less than one per cent false positive rate, we only flag something when we are 98 per cent sure it is written by AI based on data that was collected and verified in our controlled lab environment,” she added.
To help university teachers, Turitin has also released some AI writing resources on its website to help institutions understand how to deal with this new technology.
Financial Times (FT) said Turnitin’s tool is being used by more than 10,000 educational institutions worldwide. But the launch has proved contentious.
Cambridge and other leading UK universities have said they will opt-out of the new service, FT reported citing people familiar with the decision.
They expressed concern that a tool like this can falsely accused students of cheating, and subject him/her to humiliation. Handing over students’ data to a private company was another concern.
A universities’ body in the UK now plan to work with Turnitin to have an option to opt-out of the feature temporarily, the outlet further said.