How to prevent the use of ChatGPT in corporate certification exams

June 6, 2023 By Tyler Stike

Many organizations have mixed feelings about AI content tools like ChatGPT.

On one hand, organizations use ChatGPT to answer complex support questions, write website content, and even debug code.

But on the other hand, ChatGPT poses significant risks for corporate learning programs because it makes it easy to gain an unfair advantage during certification exams, employee training, and skill tests. This puts organizations’ reputations, security, and even legal compliance at risk.

Here are examples of how ChatGPT can be used to gain an unfair advantage in corporate education:

  • Answering certification exam questions, even complex math problems
  • Generating short and long-form written responses that can be copied and pasted as their own
  • Listing step-by-step instructions to complete tasks in specific software during skills tests, like how to create reports in Salesforce

How AI content tools work

These tools generate written responses based on the prompts (information and instructions) they’re given and the billions of internet resources they’re trained on.

Do they plagiarize content from internet resources?

The best tools, like ChatGPT, don’t plagiarize. How they learn is pretty similar to how humans learn.

For example, during Salesforce training, you learn to create reports from a variety of resources like FAQs, tutorials, and instructional videos.

After training, you don’t just create reports by following steps from a tutorial. You connect everything you learned from those resources to create custom reports that meet your needs.

ChatGPT basically does the same: learns, connects, and customizes.

Can plagiarism checkers detect AI content?

Honorlock, an online proctoring platform, tested ChatGPT against ten plagiarism checkers and found ChatGPT’s responses to generic prompts are usually detected, but responses to detailed prompts are essentially undetectable.

Examples of prompts with varying levels of detail:

  • Generic: Explain what capital gains are.
  • Semi-detailed: Explain what capital gains are with an analogy that relates to buying and selling a house. Write conversationally and keep the response short.
  • Detailed: Explain what capital gains are in 75 words or less. Don’t use these words: refer, asset, investors, returns. Write conversationally and use an analogy. Include a sentence that says: Capital gains basically tell you if you’ve made money or lost money.

ChatGPT and other AI tools are evolving (very quickly), getting smarter and more human-like, and they’re becoming even more difficult to detect.

Assessment tips to prevent the use of ChatGPT

Ask for written responses based on specific case studies

Responding to specific case study questions makes it difficult to use AI content tools because they won’t have enough context to respond effectively. The questions should encourage participants to think critically, apply their knowledge in different ways, and integrate their opinions and reasoning. See the examples below.

General questions

Respond to the following questions:

  1. Summarize the 12 principles of the Agile Manifesto.
  2. Compare and contrast the Agile methodology with Six Sigma.
  3. Provide three benefits of using the Agile methodology and one weakness.

Case study questions

Review ABC Company’s case study & respond to the following questions:

  1. Explain why ABC Company chose to implement Agile and describe three aspects it improved the most during the first two years.
  2. If you owned ABC Company, would you use Agile, Six Sigma, or TQM? Provide three reasons to support your choice.
  3. Provide one recommendation for ABC Company to further improve its development processes. Explain why it’s needed, the steps to implement it, and how to measure success.

Use video responses in addition to written assignments

One way to further assess knowledge and keep participants on their toes is by requiring them to provide video responses. The goal is to ask participants to dig deeper into the topic. Moodle makes it easy to create these questions and even easier for participants to record and submit video recordings of their responses.

Example written question and follow-up video response:

Written question: If you owned ABC Company, would you use Agile, Six Sigma, or TQM? Provide three reasons to support your choice.

Follow-up video response: Which of these methodologies (Agile, Six Sigma, and TQM) are you least likely to use if you owned ABC Company? Discuss two reasons to support your answer.

Using educational technology to prevent the use of AI content tools

Use a flexible learning platform built for the workplace

The entire online learning experience starts with the learning platform. It helps personalize learning paths, customize assessments, and it impacts accessibility and collaboration. Moodle’s corporate learning management platform has the flexibility needed to customize courses and tailor assessments to your organization’s needs. It offers a variety of test question formats and plugins that make it easy to assess test takers in different ways and prevent the use of ChatGPT, like by providing video responses.

Use the webcam to monitor behavior and check the room

Check the room for unauthorized resources (cell phones, secondary monitors, etc.), and monitor/record behavior throughout the assignment/exam. This way, you’ll know that participants aren’t accessing AI tools from other devices.

Detect cell phones and other devices

In addition to scanning the room for cell phones, use a corporate proctoring platform that can detect when participants attempt to use their cell phones to look up answers or device-sharing applications like Apple Handoff.

Prevent access to sites, applications, and browser extensions

Most proctoring platforms offer a flexible browser guard that prevents access to unauthorized sites, applications, and browser extensions, but some platforms can still allow participants to access specific resources while blocking all others. An example of this is allowing participants to access your organization’s knowledge base and Excel while preventing access to all other sites and applications.

Make sure participants aren’t asking Siri or Alexa for help

Use Smart Voice Detection technology to make sure participants aren’t asking Siri or Alexa to navigate ChatGPT and read the responses back to them.

This technology listens for certain keywords and phrases that can activate virtual assistants, like “Hey Siri,” and it records and transcribes what’s said.

Disable keyboard shortcuts like copying and pasting

If a participant has a general idea of what they’ll write about during the assessment, they could ask ChatGPT to write a response before starting the assessment and then copy and paste the response as their own. Using a browser guard prevents participants from using keyboard shortcuts and flags the behavior.

Keep access and accessibility at the forefront

Access and accessibility are fundamental elements that should be at the forefront of your educational programs. Using a learning platform built on access and accessibility, like Moodle, removes barriers and provides equitable access and functionality for everyone. It’s equally important to make sure that all other technologies used in your programs, like proctoring software and third-party tools, are fully accessible.

As AI content tools become more and more sophisticated and difficult to detect, organizations can stay ahead with a comprehensive approach that updates assessment activities and uses a blend of educational technologies that offer the flexibility and security needed to safeguard the entire assessment process.

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