Use of AI apps is fuelling plagiarism, as barrister warns more needs to be done to stop online exam cheating
Artificial intelligence apps, such as the chatbot ChatGPT, could make the UK’s exam cheating problem worse, a top barrister who works on student appeals has warned.
Increasingly sophisticated AI models are now able to produce “decent, plagiarism-free answers to a wide range of questions,” Daniel Sokol, a barrister at 12 King’s Bench Walk, said in an opinion piece in The Independent.
Sokol warned widespread use of these AI tools among students risks undermining universities academic reputations as he called for exams to be carried out in person instead.
“As a lawyer who advises students accused of cheating and an employer who hires graduates, I firmly believe that universities should conduct all important assessments in person,” Sokol said.
“That is the only way to maintain standards and reassure employers and others that a candidate’s degree was obtained honestly.”
The barrister said that his own survey of 900 UK undergraduate students shows one in six admit cheating in online assessments, as 79 per cent said it is easier to cheat in online exams.
“It is now too easy to cheat in online exams and too many students are currently doing so, undetected,” Sokol said.
Sokol’s comments come as the UK’s Big Four accountancy firms have faced mounting scrutiny from regulators over accusations of widespread cheating on professional exams.
The exam cheating scandals, that saw sharing of answers between colleagues, led to EY, KPMG, and PwC being fined by watchdogs in Britain, the US, and Canada.