ChatGPT aces Wharton MBA exam, Professor warns AI will reduce ‘value of education’

OpenAI’s chatbot ChatGPT has created ripples through the academic industry, though the creative industry as several people while, playing with the chatbot have created, published and sold books within a weekend, a task that requires months if not years of creative brainstorming. 

This has created a cause for concern amid academics and educators, who feel that students will use this chatbot to complete assignments, instead of using their own ‘brains’. 

As ironic as the situation stands, wherein a human created chatbot ‘still in its infancy’ now threatens human creativity, a latest incidence has jolted academics even more. 

A professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, heeding to his curiosity of what such a chatbot means for the prestigious school’s business courses found out that the chatbot can easily successfully complete examinations on a typical MBA core course, Operations Management.

Here’s what happened. 

Professor Christian Terwiesch released a paper this week, according to Fortune, which maps ChatGPT’s performance on the Operations Management paper. According to Terwiesch, the chatbot “does an amazing job at basic operations management and process analysis questions including those that are based on case studies.”

Terwiesch further said that the chatbot had its fair share of shortcomings wherein the AI bot failed to answer “more advanced process analysis questions.”

The professor also noted that ChatGPT “would have received a B to B- grade on the exam.”

Comparing the effect electronic calculators had on the corporate world to the effect ChatGPT could have on academia, Professor Terwiesch said, “Prior to the introduction of calculators and other computing devices, many firms employed hundreds of employees whose task it was to manually perform mathematical operations such as multiplications or matrix inversions. Obviously, such tasks are now automated, and the value of the associated skills has dramatically decreased. In the same way any automation of the skills taught in our MBA programs could potentially reduce the value of an MBA education.”

Andrew Karolyi, dean of Cornell University’s SC Johnson College of Business, agrees, told the Financial Times, “One thing we all know for sure is that ChatGPT is not going away. If anything, these AI techniques will continue to get better and better. Faculty and university administrators need to invest to educate themselves.”

ChatGPT is “just in its infancy,” billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban has said in an interview with Not a Bot, an AI newsletter. He added, “Imagine what GPT 10 is going to look like.”

ChatGPT is here to stay. 

Furthering this claim, one can note that software giant Microsoft has been mulling a $10 billion investment in OpenAI, the venture behind ChatGPT, after an initial $1 billion investment a few years ago. 

Google parent Alphabet is also responding by plowing resources into similar tools to answer the challenge, which it fears could hurt its search dominance.

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