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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Introduction to Generative AI

This library guide is a UIUC campus resource to read and reference for instructional, professional, and personal learning. Updates will occur on a semester basis. Last Updated: March 2024

Documenting Your Use of AI

White female librarian surrounded by books and balled paper flying, generated by Adobe FireflyAt a minimum, address and note that generative AI was used in a project. It is important to acknowledge you have used generative AI tools and disclose this information with your instructor, supervisor, and/or journal publication. Do not present AI-generated material as your own. Proceeding without adhering to citation and usage guidelines provided by your instructor, supervisor, and/or journal publication can lead to academic consequences as listed in the Office of the Provost’s Students’ Quick Reference Guide to Academic Integrity or in a publishing journal’s guidelines. Refer to the generative AI policy provided by your supervisor, instructor, or journal publication for citation and usage guidelines.

Reminder: Consult your supervisor, instructor, and/or journal publication guidelines for using generative AI.

Ingredients of a good AI statement:

  • Which tool you used
  • Which version of the tool you used
  • The date and time you used it
  • What task(s) you used it for
  • The prompts you used
  • Copies of the unedited AI outputs
  • Brief summary of what you incorporated into your work, where AI-generated materials appears, and why
  • Formal citation of each tool

Last Updated: March 2024

Citing generative AI

The use of generative AI is developing in academia, but its usage and position in education and research is tentative to specific instructors, publishers, and institutions. It’s important to recognize that citing generative AI is complicated by it being a tool that aggregates and provides predictive text rather than it being a source, yet the tool’s growing influence and implementation in the academic environment has prompted citation guidelines.

Before using generative AI, ensure that you are allowed to use generative AI for your work. Defer to your instructor, supervisor, or journal publication for citation style and citation guidelines. If these guidelines are not available, consult with them the resources below before applying them. It is important to acknowledge you have used generative AI tools and disclose this information. Do not use these tools to create citations as the technology available, as of this library guide’s update, has created hallucinations (link back to the Hallucinations section).

The frequently asked question section answers the prompt:
“Q. How do you recommend citing content developed or generated by artificial intelligence, such as ChatGPT?"
Many scholarly publishers are requiring its identification though also requiring human authors to take responsibility for it and will not permit the AI to have “authorship.”