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Use ChatGPT as a student

How to use and not use ChatGPT as a student

ChatGPT, a chatbot developed by Open AI, has significantly changed the way students learn and lecturers teach. Answers can now be generated quickly and refined based on user prompts. However, ChatGPT has limitations we need to be aware of and it is important that we use it appropriately and ethically in our studies.

In our previous blog – ChatGPT's impact on education – we discussed the strengths and weaknesses of ChatGPT, how ChatGPT was being used by students and teachers, prompt engineering, and how the education industry should respond.

In this blog, we will explore how to use and not use ChatGPT as a student.

How to use ChatGPT

1. Prompt Engineering

Before you type a query into ChatGPT, you need to know how to interact with it. ChatGPT is not a search engine – just typing in one phrase or question will not always deliver the exact response you’re looking for. You will need to provide it with context, specific details, as well as tone of voice (e.g. formal, educational). Learn the four ways to engineer your prompts on ChatGPT.

2. Always verify its responses

Although ChatGPT stores a large amount of information about a wide range of topics, it can still deliver inaccurate or incorrect statements (called hallucinations) without warning the user. Therefore, you must always verify its responses with other trusted sources.

This is the same for any assessment task you get ChatGPT to help with. If the use of ChatGPT is permitted, make sure you validate the answers it provides. Lecturers will not accept ChatGPT as a reference - you will need to cite an academic source (such as a journal article).

Be aware that ChatGPT uses American English. Remember to prompt it to use Australian English spelling.

3. Use its responses as a starting point

ChatGPT’s responses should be used as a starting point or an assistant for your assignments not the final answer. Do not just copy and paste its responses. You will still need to use your research, creative, and critical thinking skills to customise its responses to your essays, assessments and team projects.

4. Research assistance

Usually, relevant journal articles and resources are provided to you by the lecturer for your assessments. However, you may want to find other articles to help your assessment stand out from other students. The chatbot can generate a list of relevant books and websites for you to research.

Make sure that you check and read each website/article just like you would with a source you have found in the library as ChatGPT has been known to fabricate references.


“List 3 academic websites that talk about future trends of digital marketing.”



“Here are three academic websites that often discuss and provide insights into future trends in digital marketing:

1. Marketing Profs:

  • Website:
  • MarketingProfs is a valuable resource for marketing professionals and academics alike. They frequently publish articles and reports on the latest trends in digital marketing, including future predictions and insights.

2. EMarketer

  • Website:
  • EMarketer is a reputable source for digital marketing research and data. While it’s not exclusively academic, it provides valuable insights into digital marketing trends and statistics that can be useful for academic research.

3. Hubspot Research

  • Website:
  • Hubspot, a leading marketing software company, conducts research on various marketing topics. They often publish reports and studies related to digital marketing trends, which can be valuable for academic purposes.”

5. Brainstorming / Briefing session

Before writing your essay or report, you could ask ChatGPT for ideas to write about or perhaps you have a group presentation, and you need help with a list of key points to cover.

Do not copy and paste your essay question into the prompt as you want ChatGPT to give you ideas, not a long answer. Ensure you compare any suggestions with what you’ve learned in class and the assessment criteria.


“I have an academic essay on the increasing use of AI technology in health services management. What key points should I cover?”

“Give me 5 ideas on a title for a presentation about new management styles.”

6. Summarise long articles

If you have a long research paper or journal article to read, you can prompt ChatGPT to break down the article into key points with explanations.


“Breakdown the following article into key points. [Insert article paragraphs]”

7. Assistance with essay writing

When it comes to essay writing, you cannot ask ChatGPT to write your essay for you. However, it can assist you with:

7.1. Language learning support

You can enhance your language skills by practising your vocabulary and engaging in conversations with ChatGPT.


“Help me practise for the grammar section of the IELTS test.”



“Here are some practice exercises to get your started: 

  1. Correct the Sentence: 

  • Identify and correct the errors in the following sentence: “She enjoy playing the piano.” 

  1. Verb Tenses: 

  • Complete the sentence with the appropriate verb tense: “By the same I ___(arrive) at the party, everyone ___(leave).” 

  1. Articles (a/an, the): 

  • Fill in the blank with the correct article: “I saw ___ movie last night.”

7.2. Finding synonyms, antonyms, and phrases

ChatGPT can help you find more formal words and phrases to use in your essays.


“Provide a list of synonyms for the word ‘create’.”

“Give me 5 ways to say the phrase ‘businesses must not be afraid to explore AI’.”

7.3. Citation and referencing

There are many ways to cite your sources and reference your work such as Harvard referencing and MLA (Modern Language Association). Check with your lecturer which style they prefer. ChatGPT cannot directly access external websites to retrieve article information for citations, but you can provide the details and ask ChatGPT to create the citations or check that you have referenced correctly.


“Cite this article in Harvard style and MLA. [Insert article details – Author, Title of article, Title of journal, publication date etc]”

8. Assistance with assessments

When it comes to your assessment tasks you cannot ask ChatGPT to write the answers for you, however, ChatGPT can assist you with:

8.1. Definitions

You can access clear and concise explanations of complex concepts to help you understand the topic better and ask ChatGPT to provide you real-world examples.


“Can you please help me understand what ‘Adverse Effects of Heavily Enforced Culture’ mean? Explain it to me like I am 12 years old.”

“Give a real-world example where a company has suffered the ‘Adverse Effects of Heavily Enforced Culture’.”

8.2. Structure and Framework

You can ask ChatGPT for guidance on structuring your introduction, background, problem statement, analysis, recommendations, and conclusion. Use this sparingly as lecturers want to hear your voice in assessments.


"Help me write a better introduction. This is what I have so far [insert your copy].”

8.3. Presentations

You can provide ChatGPT the information you are presenting on, and it can suggest what your slides should feature in the introduction, middle, and conclusion. It can advise you on the types of visuals to use, write a script or talking points, and tips on delivering presentations effectively (e.g. body language, tone of voice).


“Structure the following information into presentation slides [insert your notes]”

“How do I present effectively?”

9. Exam preparation

ChatGPT can provide guidance on effective study strategies.

PROMPT (you):

“I have an exam in a week, but I have too much to study. Can you give guidance on effective study strategies.”



“Effective study strategies can help you make the cost of your time and perform well on your exam. Here are some tips to help you study efficiently in the week leading up to your exam:

1. Create a Study Schedule

  • Plan out your study time for the week, allocating specific time slots for each subject or topic you need to cover. Stick to this schedule to ensure you cover everything.

2. Prioritise Topics

  • Identify the most important or challenging topics that you need to focus on. Prioritise these in your study schedule.

3. Break It Down

  • Divide your study sessions into manageable chunks, typically 25-30 minutes each (Pomodoro Technique). Take short breaks in between to rest and recharge.”

You can also prompt ChatGPT to help you create study notes that will cover key topics and essential concepts to focus on as well as generate practice questions.

10. Check your university’s academic policy regarding AI use

Universities and higher education providers have different stances on AI tools. Most will encourage you to use ChatGPT as a resource, but some may not allow it at all. Read the university’s academic integrity policy regarding AI use or check with your lecturer about AI use in specific assessments to ensure you do not face academic penalties.

At Kaplan Business School, ChatGPT can be used for assessments (as an enhancement for students’ skills and ideas) in role plays, presentations, and personal reflections. Learning outcomes incorporate AI-assisted tasks but lecturers still focus on developing their students’ career skills such as critical thinking and creativity.

How to not use ChatGPT

1. Copy and Paste

Academic Integrity (e.g. plagiarism) is taken very seriously by universities. Do not copy and paste answers from ChatGPT to your assignment. There are applications that teachers use to identify AI-generated text such as Turnitin and AICheatCheck to verify whether a student’s work is original.

As lecturers use ChatGPT and other generative AI for their work, the more familiar they will be with its style of answers which often lack personality, rationality, and deep insights.

2. Believe that the responses are completely accurate and up to date

OpenAI, the creators of ChatGPT, have advised that ChatGPT’s responses are not always accurate. The chatbot is only as good as the data or text it’s been trained on. It cannot tell whether it has made a mistake, learn from its experiences nor will it know about every recent event (ChatGPT4 only has data up to 2021). Due to the data that ChatGPT has been trained on, it also contains bias. Always verify its responses and check multiple sources.

3. Believe that ChatGPT delivers the best answers

ChatGPT is a tool to help guide you and provide a starting point for your assessments. It is not a replacement for human intelligence. You will still need to use your research, critical thinking, creativity, and communication skills to achieve good results in your studies.

Interested in learning more about artificial intelligence applications? Read about our Master of Business Analytics, Master of Information Technology, and studying business in Australia.