STUMP - Meep on public finance, pensions, mortality and more
STUMP - Death and Taxes
Academia - Dealing with Writing in the Age of ChatGPT

Academia - Dealing with Writing in the Age of ChatGPT

Change what and how you write!

No transcript...

In which I give some advice as to what composition teachers should do, given that students can just go to chatGPT and ask it to generate an essay on whatever. The tool is being used, and I think there are intelligent ways to use it for composition.

Episode Links

Prior episode in referring to ChatGPT use in academic papers

Socrates sitting at a computer which has generated an essay

Guillaume Cabanac

Twitter feed: Guillaume Cabanac ⟨here and elsewhere⟩

He retweeted:

Cabanac also has a suite of tools to discover academic papers in STEM with tortured language as an indicator that something may be suspect with the method or results.

Meep’s rant on calculator use in math class

25 Aug 2000: Here is my tirade on calculators.

In 1988, when I took trigonometry in high school, graphing calculators 
were an expensive new tool and calculators hadn't really been integrated 
into the mathematics curriculum.  We mainly used calculators to add, 
subtract, multiply, divide, and sometimes even take a square 
root.  However, even these most rudimentary calculators were forbidden my 
first quarter in trig. 
Fast forward to 1996, in which very sophisticated calculators and computer 
programs have been incorporated into the math curriculum, from pre-algebra 
to trigonometry to calculus and beyond.  I spent four years as a 
computer consultant for the math department at North Carolina State 
University, which had fully incorporated the symbolic math program Maple 
into its Calculus curriculum.  I saw many of the students doing the same 
thing as my fellow students from so many years before: taking the 
functions they had and applying all sorts of things from example Maple 
worksheets to it, hoping they would recognize the answer when they saw 
it.  If they were lucky, the homework problem exactly paralleled the 
Usually, they were not lucky, and they, like Cinderella's step-sisters 
trying on the dainty slipper, would hack at the problem given trying to 
make it fit one of the examples that had previously been done. 
This, obviously, is a stupid way to apply technology to math problems. 

Much has been made of the use of calculators and computers in math, and 
they are indeed very useful, powerful, and even necessary tools in modern 
math research.  However, I feel that the focus of the use of these tools 
has been misplaced.  Too often they are seen as something that can remove 
the tedium from math, as opposed to tools that remove tedious calculations 
that one understands very well and can do by hand one's self. 
People claim that many students are turned off by math early on due to 
excessive rote memorization of addition tables, multiplication tables, and 
the like.  Math is about recognizing patterns, not simply arithmetic, they 
enthusiastically proclaim, and let us use calculators to cut through the 
tedium of practicing long division and graphing lines.   
I would agree with them -- mathematics has very little to do with 
arithmetic and has everything to do with finding patterns and relations 
and using these things to solve problems.  Indeed, I rarely do long 
division by hand, or even integrate by hand anymore.  However, I do not 
agree with the reasons as to why students are getting turned off from 
They get turned off because they do not understand it.

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STUMP - Meep on public finance, pensions, mortality and more
STUMP - Death and Taxes
Meep (Mary Pat Campbell) talks about mortality trends and/or public finance issues, usually with a connection to current events.