An English Teacher’s Reflections on Good Writing in an AI World | Alli Minch | 4 Min Read

January 30, 2023

Even with 28 years of classroom experience, I’m often surprised by the impact of technological innovations on my teaching. So, the articles about ChatGPT answering questions and generating college-level essays just blew my mind. According to the New York Times, over a million people signed up to test it in the first five days! And AP teachers report that the ChatGPT can convincingly address prompts for LEQ, FRQ, and SAQs. The takeaway for one college professor, interviewed by NBC New’s Kalhan Rosenblatt, is that “the best defense against AI essays is teachers getting to know their students and how they write in order to catch a discrepancy in the work they’re turning in.” Tom Daccord emphasizes the vitality of teachers’ familiarity with student writing in his Intrepid Ed article. And, in an ideal world, we’d all have the time to develop that relationship. It’s significantly easier to build at an independent school—my public school load of 205 student contacts a day made that a much more challenging task.

My general sense of impending doom in a writing class is inflamed by paragraphs written by AI, including, from Daccord, “Sudowrite’s ability to work with…

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Alli Minch

Alli Minch serves as School Support for OESIS Network and English Department Lead for OESIS Faculty Placement. Previously, she taught AP English Language & Composition, AP English Literature & Composition, and various AP Social Science classes at Oak Hill School (OR), an independent school, for nine years. She has over 28 years of experience in teaching and has held various mid-level positions. She is based in Oregon.