Keio University has released the guidelines for the usage of generative AI, such as ChatGPT on May 15. Under the university’s motto, “Dokuritsu-Jison (a spirit of independence and self-respect)”, the decision whether to allow the use will be made by each faculty, graduate school, and instructor.

Three policies are released by Keio on every subject.

  1. When the instructor or the faculty allows the usage of generative AI, students are expected to use the service complying with the guidelines.
  2. When students use generative AI to write reports, they must indicate it on the assignment.
  3. When individual work is required, the usage of generative AI will not be allowed.

Since the policies above will be applied in all faculties, there is no uniform ban on the use of generative AI. There is, however, a possibility that a specific prohibition may be indicated by each faculty or instructor as needed. The judgement regarding the unfair use of generative AI and the severity of punishment will be left to the discretion of each faculty.

Keio has debated its policy for generative AI since early April. A conference on the university’s top decision-making body for academic affairs,   “Daigaku-Hyougikai” took place on April 21. The decision, supported by the representatives of each faculty and graduate school at the school committee, was finally announced prior to the release of the schedule for the first quarter examination. Although opinions regarding the tool are still divided, the university will respect the decision of each faculty while promoting solidarity. The decision for Keio’s elementary, junior high, and high schools has yet to be confirmed, as more conversation with MEXT is required.

Some experts have warned about the potential dangers of using generative AI including ChatGPT. Excess caution must be a premise for its use as it could lead to unintended copyright violations and leakage of personal information. “When using technology, think about its effects on society. Even long-lasting social media has risks of exposing information,” said Yoshimitsu Matsuura, Vice-President for Academic Affairs and Admissions. “It is important to utilize technology under the principle of ‘Dokuritsu-Jison’ considering its pros and cons.”

Generative AI produces images, documents, and music by learning the existing data. ChatGPT has become a recent trend due to its humanlike interactive interface. While education communities still share mixed reactions, several universities in Japan have already announced their regulations for generative AI. Sophia University banned the use of generative AI in reports and homework, while the University of Tokyo is reluctant to a complete ban and announced to figure out a way to adjust to the tool.

(Written by Takeru Oppata, Translated by Rikuto Noda)