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Learn some basics about using ChatGPT


An illustrated green robot with a question bubble over it's head that says Ask me anything. Pictured alongside the robot are a magnifying glass, paintbrushes, wrench, "AI". and "Chatbot"ChatGPT, which is a generative AI tool, is a large language model that is able to create conversation-like responses to user prompts. To illustrate that capability, we used ChatGPT to generate some of the text in this guide. We've made it clear which text was generated by ChatGPT and cited it according to the APA Style rules. For a comprehensive overview of the tool, please see the ChatGPT Wikipedia entry.

If you're a Royal Roads student and you want to know more about the university's guidance for students on generative AI, please visit You're a RRU Student; What Do You Need to Know About Generative AI? For information on ChatGPT in post-secondary education, please see UNESCO's ChatGPT and Artificial Intelligence in Higher Education: A Quick Start Guide.

Image by pencil parker from Pixabay

What is ChatGPT according to ChatGPT?

See below for the prompts we used to generate responses from ChatGPT. We've used accordion formatting to collapse the initial responses to the prompts, but if you'd like to read them, click on "See ChatGPT's response".

Prompt 1: How would you describe ChatGPT to someone who has never heard of it before? Make it appropriate for adults.

ChatGPT is an advanced conversational AI developed by OpenAI. Think of it as a computer program designed to have interactive and meaningful conversations with you, much like chatting with a knowledgeable and friendly companion. It's built on a powerful artificial intelligence model that has been trained on a wide variety of texts and information, allowing it to generate responses and provide information on a wide range of topics.

With ChatGPT, you can engage in conversations on practically any subject you can think of. Whether you're seeking answers to specific questions, looking for creative ideas, or simply wanting to engage in a friendly chat, ChatGPT is here to help. It's like having a virtual conversation partner who can provide information, share opinions, and even tell jokes if you're in the mood for some light-hearted fun.

However, it's important to note that ChatGPT is not a human and does not possess emotions, personal experiences, or real-time awareness of current events beyond its training knowledge cutoff date. It's designed to provide helpful responses based on the data it has been trained on, but it's always a good idea to verify the information it provides with other reliable sources.

In summary, ChatGPT is an AI-powered conversational partner that aims to simulate human-like conversation, providing information and engaging in dialogue on a wide range of topics. It's a fascinating tool for learning, exploration, and interactive experiences, but it's essential to remember that it has its limitations as an artificial intelligence. (OpenAI, 2023)


Prompt 2: De-emphasize the human qualities of ChatGPT and explain the text prediction of the tool.

Certainly! ChatGPT is a powerful tool that excels at text prediction. It has been trained on an extensive dataset that includes a vast amount of written text from diverse sources, allowing it to generate coherent and contextually relevant responses based on the input it receives.

When you provide ChatGPT with a prompt or a message, it uses its understanding of language and patterns from its training to predict and generate the most likely continuation of the text. It analyzes the context of the conversation and tries to come up with a response that makes sense and provides relevant information.

The text prediction capabilities of ChatGPT make it a valuable tool for a wide range of applications. It can assist in generating creative content, providing answers to questions, offering suggestions, and engaging in interactive conversations. The more specific and detailed your input, the more accurate and helpful the responses tend to be.

However, it's important to keep in mind that ChatGPT is purely an algorithmic model and lacks consciousness or independent thinking. It doesn't possess personal experiences or real-time awareness of events happening beyond its training data. Therefore, while it can generate impressive text predictions, it's essential to critically evaluate and verify the information it provides, especially when it comes to factual or time-sensitive matters.

In summary, ChatGPT's text prediction capabilities are at the heart of its functionality. By leveraging its training on a vast amount of textual data, it aims to generate contextually relevant and coherent responses based on the input it receives. It's an incredibly useful tool for various applications, but it's crucial to exercise critical thinking and verify the information it generates. (Open AI, 2023)


Prompt 3: Shorten the response to 200 words.

ChatGPT is a powerful tool for text prediction. Trained on vast amounts of written text, it generates coherent and contextually relevant responses. When you provide a prompt or message, it uses language understanding and patterns from its training to predict the most likely continuation of the text. It's useful for generating creative content, answering questions, and engaging in conversations. However, it's important to remember that ChatGPT lacks consciousness and independent thinking. It doesn't have personal experiences or real-time awareness. While it can provide impressive text predictions, it's essential to verify the information it provides, especially for facts and time-sensitive matters. In summary, ChatGPT's text prediction capabilities make it a valuable tool, but critical evaluation and verification of its responses are necessary. (OpenAI, 2023)



OpenAI. (2023). ChatGPT (May 9 version) [Large language model].