Library Website: Research & referencing - How Can I Use Chat GPT?

  How can I use ChatGPT?

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ChatGPT is an advanced AI language model that holds immense value for both students and staff. By leveraging the power of natural language processing, ChatGPT can provide valuable information, answer questions, and offer guidance on a wide range of topics. Its availability ensures quick access to relevant resources, enhances research capabilities, and empowers users to navigate complex subjects with ease. As an interactive and responsive tool, ChatGPT opens up new avenues for learning, problem-solving, and acquiring the knowledge necessary for academic and professional success.

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Creating an account: 

  1. Visit the OpenAI website: Go to the OpenAI website by typing "OpenAI" in your preferred search engine or directly entering the URL "" in your web browser.

  2. Sign up or log in: If you already have an OpenAI account, log in using your credentials. Otherwise, click on the "Sign up" or "Get started" button on the OpenAI homepage to create a new account.

  3. Complete the registration process: Provide the required information to complete the registration process. This typically involves providing your name, email address, and creating a password.

  4. Agree to terms and conditions: Review and accept the terms of service and any other relevant agreements presented during the registration process.

  5. Verify your email address: Open your email inbox and locate the verification email sent by OpenAI. Click on the verification link provided in the email to confirm your email address.

  6. Navigate to the ChatGPT platform: Once you have verified your email address and logged into your OpenAI account, navigate to the ChatGPT platform. You may find it in the OpenAI dashboard or in the navigation menu of the OpenAI website.

  7. Access ChatGPT: Click on the ChatGPT platform to access the interface. Here, you can begin interacting with ChatGPT by typing in prompts or questions and receiving responses from the AI model.

Note: OpenAI may have specific access requirements, such as signing up for a waitlist or subscribing to a specific plan. Make sure to follow any additional steps or instructions provided by OpenAI to gain access to ChatGPT.


Using ChatGPT effectively

  1. Be Clear and Specific: When formulating your questions or prompts, strive to be as clear and specific as possible. Clearly state what information or assistance you seek, providing context if necessary. This helps ChatGPT better understand your query and provide more accurate responses.

  2. Experiment and Iterate: ChatGPT learns from user interactions, so feel free to experiment with different prompts and variations. If you get an answer that doesn't fully address your question, could you try rephrasing or providing additional context to refine the response Iterating and experimenting can often yield better results.

  3. Provide Context: Providing additional context can significantly improve the accuracy and relevance of ChatGPT's responses. When relevant, include details such as your location, specific requirements, or relevant background information. This allows ChatGPT to tailor its responses more effectively.

  4. Verify information: When using chatGPT it is always best to independently verify critical or sensitive information. Cross-checking facts with reputable sources helps ensure the reliability and validity of the information you receive.

  5. Understand Limitations: It's essential to recognise that ChatGPT has limitations. It may sometimes generate responses that sound plausible but are only partially accurate. Be mindful of these limitations and exercise critical thinking when evaluating responses. If in doubt, consult subject matter experts or additional resources.

  6. Refine and Clarify: If you receive a unclear response or not what you expected, feel free to ask clarification or further information. ChatGPT can benefit from additional guidance, and asking follow-up questions can help elicit more helpful responses.

Understanding and Evaluating Responses

  1. Interpreting ChatGPT's Responses: ChatGPT generates responses based on patterns and examples it has learned from vast amounts of text data. Remember that it doesn't possess real-world knowledge or personal experiences. Approach the responses with this understanding, considering them suggestions or insights rather than definitive answers.

  2. Fact-Checking and Verification: It's essential to fact-check and verify critical information obtained from ChatGPT independently. While ChatGPT tries to provide accurate answers, errors or inaccuracies can occur. Please cross-reference the information with trusted sources or consult subject matter experts to make sure the information is correct.

  3. Recognising Biases: ChatGPT, like any AI model, can sometimes exhibit biases present in the training data. Be mindful of potential biases in the responses and critically evaluate them. If you encounter any biased or inappropriate content, provide feedback to OpenAI, as they actively work to address and mitigate such issues.

  4. Seek Additional Sources: ChatGPT can be a valuable starting point for information, but it's advisable to explore multiple sources to gain a well-rounded understanding. Consult authoritative websites, academic publications, or consult with subject matter experts to deepen your knowledge and validate the information received.

Ethical Considerations

  1. Creatorship: Using content generated by ChatGPT without expanding or modifying it means that you're presenting work that is not your own.

  2. Accessibility: Many generative AI tools are now applying a cost to access them in full or to access additional features. This creates a barrier for those who are unable to pay to use them. 

  3. Privacy: Generative AI tools collect and store data about their users. This data can be used by the developers of the tools. There is also the potential for this data to be sold or given to third parties.  

  4. Bias: Content created by generative AI can be biased, depending on the content it has access to. This can include developers embedding their own biases when creating AI tools and biases contained in the information used to train the tools.  

  5. Academic Integrity: Using ChatGPT or any other generative AI tools to create or rewrite material for assessment and then submitting that work as your own is a form of plagiarism. 

  6. Accuracy: If a generative AI tool is unable to provide a correct answer, it will generate a false answer that may appear to be factually correct. It's often difficult to know what data has been used to generate content provided by generative AI, meaning that it can't be used as a credible or reliable source of information.

Advanced tips & tricks


  1. Expanding the Scope of Questions: While ChatGPT can handle a wide range of queries, you can expand its understanding by asking more nuanced or complex questions. Break down complex inquiries into multiple parts or provide additional context to receive more detailed and accurate responses.

  2. Utilising Specific Commands or Keywords: ChatGPT responds to certain commands or keywords that can help guide its behaviour. For example, you can use the command "Translate this sentence into French" to obtain a translation. Experiment with different commands or keywords to unlock specific functionalities or tailor the responses to your needs.

  3. Experiment with Prompt Engineering: Prompt engineering involves refining your prompts to achieve desired outcomes. For example, you want a concise summary of a lengthy article. In that case, you can try starting your prompt with "Summarise the following article:" followed by the text of the article copied into the chat. By experimenting with different prompt structures, you can guide ChatGPT to provide more tailored responses.

  4. Use System-Level Prompts: In addition to user-level prompts, you can also include a system-level instruction to guide ChatGPT's behavior throughout the conversation. For instance, you can start the conversation with "You are an expert in [topic], and I have a few questions about it." This helps set the context and influence the responses accordingly.

 Additional resources 

Free self-paced courses: 

Make Teaching Easier with Artificial Intelligence (Chat GPT)

  • Learn different types of AI and how to use them as a teacher
  • Save you time each week on administrative tasks
  • Plan for the implications of Chat GPT on student assessment
  • Increase your creativity and professional writing ability as a teacher

Linkedin Learning: 

ChatGPT Online Training Courses

Only available for Gordon staff - use your staff log-in to access Linkedin Learning courses.