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UT Partners With Grammarly to Guide Effective Generative AI Use in Higher Education

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The University of Texas at Austin has teamed up with Grammarly for Education, an AI-enabled writing assistant, to investigate the adoption of generative artificial intelligence in a broad academic setting.

This project, led by UT’s Office of Academic Technology and in alignment with the University’s Year of AI initiative, will be broken into two phases. First, there will be a testing phase during which students, faculty and staff will interact with Grammarly’s generative AI assistant. Faculty and staff participants will design generative AI activities relevant to their own work areas and test those activities with students and peers. Second, faculty will create more detailed lesson plans to engage students in generative AI learning activities — all vetted to meet UT’s academic standards.

“We strive to be involved in projects that will influence higher education on and beyond the Forty Acres,” said Art Markman, vice provost for academic affairs. “We are in an era with a lot of uncertainty surrounding AI and education. This is a chance to demonstrate how to use generative AI as a positive source for education, teach responsibility to our students, and engage an industry leader to improve our understanding of classroom AI.”

Grammarly’s GenAI assistant

All participants in the project will receive a short-term Grammarly for Education pilot license. Training on Grammarly for Education and the AI assistant will be provided.

“We’re thrilled to partner with UT on such a forward-looking project,” said Mary Rose Craycraft, head of customer success at Grammarly for Education. “We know that innovating with AI while preserving academic integrity and critical thinking is a key challenge that all institutions are grappling with right now. We look forward to working with UT to develop best practices that can scale responsible AI adoption across the sector.”

Projects like the Grammarly adoption are carefully assessed and vetted by the Office of Academic Technology through a Learning Technology Adoption Process (LTAP). LTAPs provide a strategic and coordinated approach to data-driven adoption of academic technology ensuring the University only adopts and promotes tools on campus that align with its principles of effective teaching. The process protects students and faculty from adopting short-term technologies or those unsuitable for information security regulations.

Ultimately, the University’s coordination and partnership with emerging learning technology platforms leads to decisions that are in the best interest of students, staff and faculty. By collaborating with those who will be using generative AI tools most through case studies and active feedback, the Office of Academic Technology aims to engage in both AI-forward and AI-responsible teaching and learning at UT Austin.

“Our primary generative AI strategy is to use evidence-based decision-making to drive effective, forward and responsible AI use in ways that advance the teaching and learning mission of the University,” said Julie Schell, assistant vice provost of academic technology. “We are very excited to work with Grammarly to engage the UT community and create generative AI activities and lesson plans vetted by UT faculty, staff and students that can be scaled with any generative AI tool.”

To participate in the Grammarly project, sign up on the project webpage. For all other questions, please contact oat@utexas.edu.