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Is AI Affecting College Admissions?

Is AI Affecting College Admissions?

U.S. News

Cole Clayborn
December 29, 2023
As artificial intelligence has become increasingly prevalent, so have discussions about its place in higher education. A growing number of college professors say they’re embracing tools like ChatGPT in their classrooms, and many admissions offices are incorporating some form of AI in the decision-making process, a trend that many say will grow in the coming years.
Fifty percent of higher education admissions offices are using AI, according to a September 2023 survey by Intelligent, an online magazine focused on higher education. That number is expected to rise to more than 80% in 2024, according to the survey, which polled nearly 400 education professionals in both K-12 and higher education.
The idea of AI being used in college admissions may conjure anxiety among prospective college applicants and their families, experts say, particularly since 87% of survey respondents whose schools currently use AI – including both colleges and K-12 schools – said it is “sometimes” or “always” used to make final decisions on applicants.
Some admissions professionals – roughly two-thirds, according to the Intelligent survey – have concerns about the ethical ramifications of using AI.
But experts say its use may not be as ominous as it sounds on the surface, and it doesn’t mean the human element will be completely replaced.
“When people hear this, they freak out,” says Rick Clark, assistant vice provost and executive director of undergraduate admission at Georgia Institute of Technology. “They saw that study come out and they think all of a sudden Yale is not going to have humans making decisions anymore. That is just completely false.”
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