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Psychology Connected: Artificial Intelligence in Academia

Thursday 15 June 2023
Psychology Connected
Pieter de la Court
Wassenaarseweg 52
2333 AK Leiden

On Thursday afternoon, 15 June, the fourth edition of Psychology Connected will take place. A recurring event to which the entire Psychology Institute is invited to engage with each other, over drinks, in a conversation about a better university and society. What do those look like and how do we get there?

Artifical Intelligence in Academia

Writing poems, drafting job application letters, programming, and solving mathematical formulas: there is little that ChatGPT cannot help us with. Since the launch of the chatbot last December, our daily lives have become much easier.

In academia, it seems impossible to ignore the upsurge of this AI-tool. Why would researchers slog through piles of papers when a few well-formulated prompts can conjure up an entire literature list with summaries? AI also comes to the aid of students: essay topics can be devised in no time, and the essays themselves can be effortlessly written.

Is ChatGPT causing a revolution in the academic world? Or has that already quietly happened? In the fourth and final edition of Psychology Connected for this academic year, we delve into the world of artificial intelligence with two experts and discuss how to deal with the prominent role that AI has rapidly gained in research and education. The questions for the afternoon are:

  • What are the possible applications of ChatGPT in academic research?
  • What are the benefits? What are the risks?
  • How should we deal with artificial plagiarism? And how important is it to continue training our doctoral candidates in scientific writing.

What concerns, questions, or points of discussion do you have about AI in research and education? Share them with your colleagues on June 15th!


Judith Schomaker, associate professor of Health, Medical and Neuropsychology

Dr. Judith Schomaker investigates the role of novelty in the learning process and the brain. She specifically focuses on how virtual reality helps explain the underlying processes and explores how VR can be applied in a clinical setting.

About ChatGPT

'I use ChatGPT as a conversation partner and sounding board to enhance my critical thinking. By the end of this year, I plan to submit a grant application and had multiple ideas. I was uncertain about which topic would be the most promising and influential. ChatGPT has been helpful in weighing the scientific and societal value of the different options and has provided insights into the topics of previously funded proposals as well.

If I were to figure all of that out on my own, it would have taken me a very long time, and I probably wouldn't have been able to create such a comprehensive overview. So, I primarily use ChatGPT to further shape my own thought processes!'

Roy de Kleijn, associate professor of Cognitive Psychology

Dr Roy de Kleijn researches and teaches in artificial intelligence, computational modelling, artificial neural networks, and (cognitive) psychology. In particular, he focuses on how robots learn to solve complex problems using reinforcement learning and evolutionary algorithms.

About ChatGPT

'I definitely use ChatGPT for summarizing papers and inspiring assignments! While the exact composition of the training corpus is not publicly disclosed, it's reasonable to assume that it includes hundreds, if not thousands, of psychology course syllabi. This makes ChatGPT well-suited for tasks like these, and you won't often receive strange suggestions.'

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