Academic integrity and the challenges of artificial intelligence

On 20th October 2023, the Office organised its annual conference Ethics in Academia 2023. Gabija Juzėnaitė, a representative of the Lithuanian National Union of Students, presenting the results of the academic integrity index, stressed that the most common forms of dishonest behaviour were using notes, lecture notes and other literature sources and information technology tools during distance learning, while the least common were bribing lecturers with money or gifts to get a better mark. Dr Julija Umbrasaitė, Senior Analyst of the Office, presented the results of the study The Supply of Contract Cheating Services in Lithuania, which showed that contract cheating services are more intensively advertised during the active study period (March and April 2023), with one fifth more advertisements than in the study conducted in August 2021. The study results also show that such services are offered not only to bachelor and masters students, but also to doctoral students. Dr Laura Daniusevičiūtė-Brazaitė, Associate Professor at Kaunas University of Technology, discussed the definitions of artificial intelligence, presented the capabilities of the ChatGPT tool, and provided possible solutions on what should be done in order to prevent irregularities in the application of artificial intelligence technologies.

The conference continued with a discussion with the participation of Assoc. Prof. Dr Laura Daniusevičiūtė-Brazaitė (Kaunas University of Technology), Lijana Savickienė (Vilnius University Students’ Representation), and Assoc. Prof. Dr Irma Šileikienė (Vilnius University of Applied Sciences). The participants shared their thoughts on the benefits and risks of artificial intelligence technologies in higher education. They analysed the necessary competences of academic staff and students to use artificial intelligence technologies in an ethical way and discussed the ethical principles of applying artificial intelligence technologies.

The conference concluded with a presentation by Ombudsperson Dr Loreta Tauginienė on recent developments in research ethics, such as the need to protect research, researchers, and whistleblowers. The Ombudsperson also presented UNESCO’s guidance to research and higher education institutions and the academic community on how to prepare for the ethical use of artificial intelligence technologies.

Photos from the archive of the Office