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University of Delaware student poll reveals 82 percent familiar with AI, 34 percent use it for class assignments

Students present findings from poll about AI use.
Rachel Sawicki
Delaware Public Media
Students present findings from poll about AI use.

A University of Delaware poll reveals a large majority of students are familiar with AI technology.

This year’s Blue Hen poll found that 82 percent of students surveyed are familiar with AI, and 34 percent report using it for class assignments while at UD.

Business students – 54 percent – were most likely to use AI for class assignments. Engineering followed at 46 percent. Health and Sciences and undecided students were least likely to use it – 28 and 30 percent respectively.

The survey is part of a Public Opinion and Democracy course, taught by Lindsay Hoffman, who says she has seen AI used for class assignments, sometimes requiring her students to use it. She adds universities and colleges need to think about implementing AI policies to give students clear guidance on acceptable use.

“What I think is positive about this is that students really tapped into the idea that AI could help them do things like brainstorm ideas for an assignment or help them study for an exam. So they are seeing positive outcomes of AI, and just like with any other tool, professors, and teachers, it is incumbent upon us to not just regulate how they use it, but help them understand the best methods for using it.”

Senior Julia Manson is in the class and thinks the likelihood of using AI depends on how useful it is to assignments across colleges.

“I’ve never used it personally and I think that is sort of a common theme throughout, especially students in my general field of study, whereas other students I know in those colleges kind of have more work that they can draw ideas from, through AI,” Manson says.

The poll also revealed a majority of students, about 54 percent, agree or strongly agree they feel guilty about using AI for class assignments. 63 percent worry AI is producing incorrect information.

Rachel Sawicki was born and raised in Camden, Delaware and attended the Caesar Rodney School District. They graduated from the University of Delaware in 2021 with a double degree in Communications and English and as a leader in the Student Television Network, WVUD and The Review.