ChatGPT and executive training

14 July 2023
Juan Carlos Barahona, Ph.D.

The recent publication (1) by Juan Carlos Barahona, Ph.D.(2), and Diego Murillo-Esquivel, M.Sc. (3), is pioneering the little-explored intersection of artificial intelligence (AI) and business education. This exploratory study delves into the benefits and challenges of integrating ChatGPT within the framework of a student-centered business school.
At the forefront of a pedagogical revolution, this school is exploring the potential of AI tools like ChatGPT to complement its case-based learning model. The proposal is to increase (4) learning experiences and stimulate possible innovations in pedagogical design and student responsibility. In this way, the role of teachers evolves towards a more facilitative position, taking advantage of the new capabilities offered by the integration of AI.
In their experiment, the authors incorporated ChatGPT into three digital transformation courses to measure the impact of the tool on student engagement and the development of critical thinking. The authors found increased student interest in AI and confirmed that this interest was sustained despite fears about the impact of the AI ​​tool on their grades and professional growth.

The experiment yielded mixed results in the different cohorts of students, with some demonstrating greater mastery and acceptance than others. These observations underscore the critical role of educators in fostering a participant-centered approach to learning and the agile prompt engineering (5) skills that are essential to harnessing the full potential of AI tools. An additional challenge they find is that the inclusion of AI can increase the effort of the teacher and the student, not only intellectual but also dedication, instead of decreasing it.

The study revolves around two crucial areas: student engagement and critical thinking. Dig into the potential impact of AI assistants like ChatGPT on teacher-student dynamics and classroom cohesion. On the other hand, it also contemplates how these tools can humanize the teaching experience and improve student engagement, if they are integrated sensibly.

Based on their observations, the authors introduce the concept of a new "pedagogical contract." This model promotes co-learning between students and teachers, encourages experimentation and compassionate collaboration, and emphasizes the value of the case method. The document culminates with seven key takeaways that map out the roadmap for future educational practices amid a rapidly evolving AI landscape:

  1. Inevitability: Universities need to rethink how humans and machines interact and integrate AI into existing mediation methods and business models.
  2. The role of the teacher as facilitator of individual learning: intelligence involves both creative and critical guesswork. Teachers must become architects of personalized learning experiences.
  3. Knowledge of technology and awareness of students: To promote the effective use of technology, AI and expert judgment must be taught together in tasks that encourage creative problem solving. Education should emphasize collaboration, experimentation and critical thinking through a new pedagogical approach.
  4. There is an opportunity for use in homework and student and faculty preparation: it should be considered appropriate and desirable to use ChatGPT for teacher and student lesson preparation. Everyone should act on the assumption that everyone else is using it.
  5. The role of critical thinking is crucial: AI is nothing more than an assistant to human judgment, and students should not take its results as absolute truths.
  6. Digital mindset of teachers: Educators must provide students with tools and tasks that place them in a more central role in their learning process and, at the same time, encourage them to find real scenarios to put what they have learned into practice in their work.
  7. Incentives for teachers and evaluation issues: AI tools in education require investment and experimentation to prioritize the development of creative and collaborative human beings. School administrators need to review the implications for current business models.

The article is thought-provoking, initiating a discourse on the synergistic fusion of AI and business education, and Invites educators and administrators to embrace the transformative potential of AI tools like ChatGPT, catalyzing the development of the next wave of critical thinkers. that will shape the future of business.


1 Entitled “'Talk to him like a machine if you want him to answer you like a human': first impressions on the use of ChatGPT in master's courses”, currently in preprint.
2 Professor of Innovation and Technology Management at INCAE Business School

3 Digital Transformation Instructor and guest researcher at INCAE Business School

4 A term that they use explicitly indicating its use in a technological context, where it acquires a meaning more akin to "improving" or "increasing" a person's technological capabilities.
5 A term that remains in English for lack of a better translation, but that can be understood as “instruction engineering”.

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