A Tale of Two Critiques

Compare and reflect on a primary source, a ChatGPT-generated critique of that source, and a human-generated critique. The goal is for students to build skill and confidence with critical reading.

Assignment Details

Credit

AI Theme

Subject

Tools

Skills

Learning Objectives

Read a text closely and critically

Pre-work

  1. Teacher selects a primary source article and a critique of that source (e.g., The New York Times: “A Debate Over Identity and Race”Sample Assessment- “Typography and Identity”).
  2. Teacher uses ChatGPT to generate a critique of the primary source. Sample prompt (replace bracketed text depending on the article chosen):
    • Writing Task: Write a thorough critical assessment of [primary source title]. In your assessment, summarize [author’s] central claims, reasons, and assumptions. Discuss how he or she limits claims and describes and responds to any counterarguments. State your assessment of how convincing the argument is and what its weaknesses are, if any.
    • [Include text of article in prompt here]

In-class

  1. Students read the primary source, human-written assessment, and ChatGPT-generated critical assessment.
  2. Students reflect on the human vs. ChatGPT-generated assessments. Write a page or more reflecting on some of the following questions of your choice. Include at least three quotes from any of the relevant documents:
    • What strikes you as most interesting when you think about the differences between the ChatGPT and the human-written critical assessments we have just read?
    • What did ChatGPT miss? What did it get right?
    • What did the human-generated critique miss?
    • What were the strengths (and weaknesses, if any) of the human-generated critique compared to ChatGPT’s?
    • How do those observations match what we have learned about how language models work?
    • Did anything surprise you in either of the two assessments? What surprised you and why?
    • What have you learned about critical assessments from reading the article and these two samples? What do you still wonder about?
    • Based on the comparison between the human-written and the ChatGPT-written assessments, what advice might you give to a fellow student about using ChatGPT?

Related

Debating the Ethics of Generative AI

Facilitate a debate between students about the potential harms and benefits of using generative AI tools in the classroom.

...

AI Misinformation Campaign

Guide students to misuse AI for a misinformation campaign in order to expose AI’s shortcomings and threats while encouraging them to think critically about persuasion, appeals in composition, and credibility.

...