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The University of Bolton Library

Artificial Intelligence in Teaching and Learning

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Developments in Artificial Intelligence (AI) have progressed at an incredible rate, and are predicted to impact many areas of society in the coming years. 

This guide will help students and staff explore a range of AI technologies and consider how these technologies might affect their teaching and learning practice. 

This is a fast moving topic and you'll find the latest updates to this guide on the blog page

The Library's view on AI

As information professionals, the Library team are enthusiastic about the opportunities that new technologies bring. AI brings tremendous possibilities for searching, analysing and finding connections between scholarly literature and we'll be highlighting useful tools on this guide and other sections of our website. 

However, the emergence of AI technologies brings concerns around misinformation, reliability and bias, as well as ethical concerns around commercialisation, privacy and the potential for academic misconduct in assessment. We support the view of CILIP that users of AI will need "algorithmic literacy" to use AI tools effectively and responsibly. 

We're committed to supporting students and staff to develop their information literacy. The Library will be setting out a refreshed approach for this later in 2023.

In the meantime, we welcome enquiries relating to the effective and appropriate use of AI. We might not have the answers but we'll do our best to help! Contact us via

Glossary of key terms

AI can be defined as "the use of computers to model the behavioural aspects of human reasoning and learning" (The Columbia Encyclopedia)
A category of AI algorithms that can "generate new outputs based on the data they have been trained on" (World Economic Forum). Outputs of generative AI can include text, images, video and audio. 
Machine learning is a branch of artificial intelligence (AI) focused on "creating systems that can automatically improve their ability to perform tasks such as classifying images, interpreting text, or finding patterns in data" (The Encyclopedia of Computer Science and Technology)

Large Language Models (or LLMs) are AI tools that can "read, summarize and translate texts and predict future words in a sentence letting them generate sentences similar to how humans talk and write” (University of Michigan)

Examples of LLMs include OpenAI's Chat-GPT and Google's LaMDA, which underpins their AI tool Bard.