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Over Half (55%) of Undergraduate Students Worldwide Want Involvement of Human Expertise in GenAI, According to New Global Survey


According to a new global study, 40% of undergraduates worldwide say they have used generative AI (GenAI) for their college/university studies, with Kenya (63%), Canada (54%), Saudi Arabia and Spain (both 62%) ranking the highest. The U.K. (19%), U.S. (20%) and South Korea (23%) ranked last in terms of GenAI usage. Among students who have used GenAI for their studies, 50% input a question into GenAI tools once a day or more. However, while students around the world appear to view GenAI as a helpful learning support tool, they still see room for improvement, with 55% of all those surveyed calling for the involvement of human expertise in generating answers. At the same time, nearly half (47%) of the 40% who say they have used GenAI in their studies are concerned about receiving incorrect or inaccurate information.

The new findings are among those published today by Chegg.org, the non-profit arm of education technology company Chegg. They are based on in-depth opinion polling by Yonder Consulting of more than 11,800 undergraduate students aged 18-21 years across 15 countries (Australia, Brazil, Canada, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, the U.K., and the U.S.). Questions in this survey covered students' views on learning in the age of AI, skills and careers, and their health, wellbeing and social attitudes. Chegg.org launched its Global Student Survey in 2021, during COVID lockdowns, and has conducted a survey every year since. The first survey was published in February 2021, and the second in April 2022.

"This is our third Chegg.org Global Student Survey, and the most comprehensive up-to-date survey this year for its breadth of the number of students surveyed, countries featured, and the range of topics covered," said Heather Hatlo Porter, Head of Chegg.org and Chief Communications Officer of Chegg, Inc. "It provides valuable insight into undergraduate students' lives, hopes and concerns as they enter the age of AI."

The survey also shows that an overwhelming majority (79%) of students feel their education is preparing them well for the job market. However, two-thirds (66%) of students agree that they would rather their college/university offered the choice of more online learning if it meant paying lower tuition fees ? with this feeling most pronounced in Canada (80%), Kenya (78%), and the US (75%). Similarly, 67% of students around the world say that if it was cheaper, they would prefer their college/university program take a shorter amount of time to complete, particularly those in Malaysia and Kenya (both 84%).

"Although students are starting to adopt GenAI to support their learning, it's clear they see room for improvement. Students want GenAI learning tools that provide accurate, reliable study support. Crucially, according to our survey, the top priority for improving the technology among all those surveyed worldwide was the involvement of human expertise. An analysis of our internal research found that students are mainly using GenAI for writing tasks, and are not yet fully leveraging the technology for STEM subjects," said Hatlo Porter.

About two-thirds (65%) of all students surveyed around the world say that, in view of the availability of free GenAI tools, colleges/universities should change the way they assess students. Among this cohort, a majority (51%) say there should be better guidance on the acceptable use of GenAI tools in assessments. Half of all students surveyed (50%) also believe their university/college should promote the use of GenAI tools for assessed work. At the same time, 65% would like their curriculum to include training in AI tools relevant to their future career.

Among the 40% of students around the world who have used GenAI for their studies, 53% say it helps them learn faster, while 44% say it frees up more of their time. When asked about how they mostly use AI, more than half (55%) of those who use GenAI for their studies do so to understand a concept or subject, while 49% use it to research projects or assignments. Within the 40% of students who have used GenAI for their studies, the main emotion that they feel when using GenAI for their studies is curiosity: 45% said they mainly felt curious.

"By elevating the voices of students and listening to their concerns, we can gain profound insights into how to support them. Crucially, as we enter this new age of AI, we will better understand how to harness the full potential of this technology, enabling students to learn how they want, what they want, when they want, and in their preferred format ? which will ultimately help them on their lifelong learning journey," added Hatlo Porter. "Our Global Student Survey also shows that students around the world are stressed, lack sleep, and have trouble meeting new friends. There is a pressing need for robust mental health support, so learners can make the most of their education and face the future with confidence."

The survey also uncovered worrying findings on students' mental health. A majority (59%) of those surveyed around the world say they have experienced not sleeping enough, with this problem most acute in Malaysia (75%). At the same time, 54% of students worldwide have experienced daily feelings of anxiety ? with those in the US (68%) worst affected. In addition, nearly half (46%) of students globally have suffered academic burnout, particularly those in South Korea (70%).

Nevertheless, the survey results show that, more than two years on from COVID lockdowns in most countries polled, two-thirds (65%) of students globally say they feel optimistic.

About Chegg.org

Chegg.org is the impact, advocacy, and research arm of Chegg, Inc: addressing the issues facing the modern student. For more information, visit www.chegg.org.

About Chegg:

Millions of people all around the world Learn with Chegg. Our mission is to improve learning and learning outcomes by putting students first. We support life-long learners starting with their academic journey and extending into their careers. The Chegg platform provides products and services to support learners to help them better understand their academic course materials, and also provides personal and professional development skills training, to help them achieve their learning goals. Chegg is a publicly held company based in Santa Clara, California, and trades on the NYSE under the symbol CHGG. For more information, visit www.chegg.com.

About the research:

Chegg.org commissioned polling company Yonder Consulting to conduct the survey. Yonder Consulting interviewed 11,816 undergraduate students aged 18-21 in 15 countries between 31 July-16 August 2023. The countries included in the research are Australia, Brazil, Canada, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, the UK, and the US. Sample sizes ranged from 503 to 1,018 in each country. Global results represent the combined findings of the 15 countries studied. Yonder Consulting is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. For more details go to www.yonderconsulting.com.


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