General Limitations and Risks

While the innovation and creativity of generative AI is exciting, these systems do not come without limitations or ethical challenges. Some of these challenges speak to the specifics of our post-secondary context – like academic integrity – while others intersect with communities, the environment, and humanity as a whole. Many AI experts have documented such alarming concerns including; the size and scale of large language models, misinformation, AI misalignment, and existential risks to humanity.

For our purposes here this chapter will review some of the broader limitations and risks of generative AI, and will then turn to the specific context of post-secondary education. Many of these risks and limitations are explicitly addressed in McMaster’s Provisional Guidelines on the Use of Generative AI, which will be addressed in more detail in the next chapter and should be regularly reviewed for updates.

General Limitations and Risks of Generative AI

Interactive image “Some Harm Considerations of Large Language Models (LLMs)” by Rebecca Sweetman, Associate Director of Educational Technologies, Queen’s University, eCampusOntario H5P Studio, Used in accordance with CC BY-NC-SA license. 


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Generative Artificial Intelligence in Teaching and Learning at McMaster University Copyright © 2023 by Paul R MacPherson Institute for Leadership, Innovation and Excellence in Teaching is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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