‘Making AI Generative’ at Duke and Beyond with Ithaka S+R

Making AI generative for higher education by Ithaka S+R

Learning Innovation and Duke Libraries are representing Duke University in Ithaka-S+R’s study Making AI Generative for Higher Education, joining 18 leading institutions committed to “making AI generative for their campus community.”

“I am grateful that Ithaka S+R has taken the initiative to lead this important work, connecting Duke with so many other forward-thinking institutions,” said Yakut Gazi, Vice Provost for Learning Innovation and Digital Education. “The results of this project will provide actionable insights that will empower all universities to better understand and apply the powers of generative AI to teaching and learning. After all, academic innovation such as this should be, at its core, all about enhancing learning.”

The Current Status of AI in Higher Education

Representatives from each participating university met for a project kick-off meeting in September, where the following takeaways were identified by Ithaka S+R:

  • “Institutions are moving away from framing AI primarily as an academic integrity problem in favor of assessing its appropriate pedagogical uses.
  • Universities will need to focus increasing attention on the place of generative AI in the research enterprise: AI methods and ethics are too important to the mission and reputation of institutions to be left to publishers.
  • Responding to AI requires coordination across the university and across universities.” (Source)

“As the rapid growth of emerging technologies like generative AI makes innovation and deeper engagement possible, it is also disrupting the situation in which we all learn and work. It is in this environment that Duke has both an opportunity and a responsibility to impact not only the future of learning at our institution, but the future of higher education in our society,” said Joseph Salem, the Rita DiGiallonardo Holloway University Librarian and Vice Provost for Library Affairs. “Collaborations like these allow us to be a part of a much bigger conversation – one that will shape how we teach and learn.”

Project Phases

The focus for the first year of the project (Fall 2023 – Fall 2024) will be to understand what areas of university activity are most affected by generative AI, as well as tracking relevant technological, policy, service, and product developments. The project group will then spend Winter 2024 conducting interviews with instructors and researchers to create the largest qualitative dataset to-date on the higher education use-case of generative AI. The third phase will focus on developing institution-specific strategies for each participating university. The project will conclude with a report published by Ithaka S+R in 2025.

Resources on Teaching with AI at Duke

As this project progresses, Learning Innovation will continue to develop resources for the Duke community regarding teaching with generative AI and other AI tools. Currently available resources include:

Instructors with questions, concerns or ideas regarding using artificial intelligence tools for teaching are encouraged to contact us or stop by our weekly virtual office hours to connect with a teaching consultant.