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ChatGPT: What is ChatGPT?

This guide is meant to help students and faculty understand ChatGPT. So they will be able to use it wisely in an academic setting.


This guide's intention is to help you engage with generative AI tools and while also focusing on how they intersect with information literacy.

Students, please first confirm with your professor that using ChatGPT  is acceptable before using it for any course assignments!


What is ChatGPT?

Chat GPT is an artificial intelligence tool that generates text based on given prompts.

Why not find out how ChatGPT explains itself! We used the ChatGPT tool on June 26th, 2023 and input the following prompts.

Who Created ChatGPT?

ChatGPT was created by OpenAI which is an AI research company. Chat GPT was launched in November of 2022.

The below prompts are ones that the creator of this libguide put into ChatGPT along with the responses ChatGPT gave:

Prompt: What is ChatGPT?

"ChatGPT is a natural language processing (NLP) model developed by OpenAI. It is based on the GPT-3.5 architecture, which is an advanced version of the GPT-3 model. ChatGPT is designed to understand and generate human-like text based on the input it receives. It can engage in conversations, answer questions, provide information, and perform various text-based tasks. The "GPT" in ChatGPT stands for "Generative Pre-trained Transformer." It is "pre-trained" because it has been trained on a massive amount of text data from the internet, which allows it to learn grammar, facts, reasoning abilities, and even some degree of common sense. "Transformer" refers to the neural network architecture used in the model, which has been highly effective for NLP tasks. ChatGPT can be used for a wide range of applications, including chatbots, virtual assistants, content generation, language translation, and more. It's capable of carrying on coherent and contextually relevant conversations with users, making it a valuable tool for various natural language understanding and generation tasks." (OpenAI, 2023)

Prompt: What Can You Do?

"I can perform a variety of tasks and assist with different types of information and interactions. Here are some of the things I can do:

  1. Answer Questions: I can provide information and explanations on a wide range of topics, from general knowledge to specialized subjects.

  2. Explain Concepts: I can break down complex concepts and explain them in a simpler way to enhance understanding.

  3. Language Translation: I can translate text from one language to another.

  4. Writing Assistance: I can help with writing tasks such as generating essays, reports, creative content, and more.

  5. Programming Help: I can assist with programming-related questions, code debugging, and coding explanations.

  6. Math and Science Assistance: I can solve math problems, provide scientific explanations, and assist with various STEM-related queries.

  7. Recommendations: I can offer recommendations for books, movies, music, travel destinations, and more based on your preferences.

  8. Conversation: I can engage in open-ended conversations, discuss current events, and provide companionship.

  9. Conversion and Calculations: I can convert units, currencies, and perform various calculations.

  10. Weather Updates: I can provide current weather conditions and forecasts for specific locations.

  11. Geography and Maps: I can provide information about countries, cities, landmarks, and give directions.

  12. General Knowledge: I can provide facts and trivia on a wide range of topics.

  13. Health Information: I can offer general health advice and information, but I am not a substitute for professional medical advice.

  14. History: I can discuss historical events and figures.

  15. Technology: I can provide information about technology, gadgets, and software.

  16. Entertainment: I can talk about movies, TV shows, celebrities, and entertainment news.

  17. News Updates: I can provide current news headlines and summaries.

Please note that my responses are based on the knowledge available up to my last training data in September 2021. While I strive to provide accurate and helpful information, I may not have access to the most recent developments or information beyond that date." (OpenAI, 2023)

Pros and Cons of ChatGPT

Here are some Pros and Cons of ChatGPT:


  • Chat GPT is continually improving
  • Easy to use
  • Faster response times
  • Improved natural language understanding
  • The ability to generate more natural-sounding conversations
  • Writing assistance


  • Inaccuracies of information/Misinformation
  • Over-Reliance - the platform is often taken down because of to many users, one may not know if it is always readily available to use
  • Potential bias from the data used to train it
  • Potential for Plagiarism
  • Privacy Concerns
  • There are many limits to it, which you can find on the Limitations tab

What is ChatGPT?

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