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Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Information Literacy

Learn about how AI works and how to spot common errors AI tools tend to make. You'll also learn fact-checking and critical thinking strategies for AI, how to cite AI in an academic paper, and how to learn more in-depth about AI tools and issues.

How does AI work?

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Explore different types of AI

While some AI-based tools might come to your mind right away, there are a lot of different tools out there with a lot of different uses. As you evaluate how to use these tools responsibly in your academic work, it is useful to keep the breadth of potential uses in mind. You or your instructor might want to use one kind of tool for a certain situation but not others. Click through the sections below to explore some potential applications of AI. Please note that this list is not comprehensive or an endorsement of any particular tool used in the examples.

Text and Code

Text and Code

Some tools will give you writing or paraphrasing suggestions (e.g. Grammarly, QuillBot), and other tools will generate new text or code based on a prompt from you (e.g. Bing AI, Claude, ChatGPT, Google's Bard).

Text and Code Examples

Grammarly Response


Bing Chat Screenshot

Bing Chat

Quillbot Example




Some tools will generate unique images for you, based on a text prompt (e.g. DALL-E, Adobe Firefly, Midjourney).

Images Examples

AI Testudo Statue

Prompt: "Testudo at University of Maryland" (Bing Image Creator)

AI Testudo Statue in the style of Wes Anderson

Prompt: "Testudo at University of Maryland in the style of Wes Anderson" (Bing Image Creator)

AI Testudo Statue in the style of a child's drawing

Prompt: "Child's crayon drawing of Testudo at University of Maryland" (Bing Image Creator)

Video and Audio

Video and Audio

Some tools will use written text to generate spoken language or to create talking video avatars (e.g. Synthesia, PlayHT).

Video and Audio Examples

Synthesia Example


PlayHT Example




Some tools will help you find research articles or links (e.g. Bing AI, Elicit).

Research Examples

Bing Chat Screenshot

Bing AI

Elicit Example