New Survey Finds AI is Replacing Tutors for Students

An increasing number of students are turning to ChatGPT to supplement and replace their human tutors. New research illustrates how AI technologies are causing a paradigm shift in higher education.

The survey, which involved more than 1,000 students across all academic levels, revealed a significant shift in the use of tutoring resources. 75 percent of respondents reported using ChatGPT as a preferred educational tool, while only 25 percent relied solely on human tutors.

Nearly all of the students who studied with a tutor and ChatGPT this last year replaced some of their tutoring sessions with ChatGPT. 98 percent say their grades have improved since studying with ChatGPT and 9 of 10 prefer studying with ChatGPT to studying with a human tutor. The most common subjects students have replaced tutors for are math and science.

Some of the reasons cited for ChatGPT usage include:

  • Ease of access and convenience of 24/7 availability
  • Personalized learning experiences tailored to each student’s needs
  • Interactive and engaging experience appeals to students
  • Comfortability in interacting with a chatbot
  • Judgment-free zone when seeking citations or asking questions
  • Anonymity fosters a more inclusive learning environment
  • Encouragement to explore and learn without hesitation

“As a current student using ChatGPT, I have found it to be a helpful and convenient tool for studying,” said one college a college junior. “Unlike seeing a tutor, ChatGPT is available 24/7 and can answer my questions immediately.”

The Role of AI in Education

The emergence of ChatGPT as a tutoring tool reflects the growing influence of AI in higher education. AI can transform traditional learning methodologies and augment the capabilities of educators, allowing them to focus on personalized instruction, mentoring, and addressing complex queries rather than repetitive tasks and routine explanations.

AI-powered chatbots can also assist students in developing critical thinking and problem-solving skills—must-have skills for today’s careers. Through personalized feedback and guidance, ChatGPT promotes independent learning, helping students become more self-reliant. This enhances their academic achievement and equips them with skills to navigate the evolving job market.

Implications and Challenges

While integrating AI into education has many advantages, it also poses challenges. One concern is the potential overreliance on AI tutors, which could limit human interaction and interpersonal skills development. Effective communication, teamwork, and emotional intelligence are essential skills that can be cultivated through human-to-human involvement in education.

Another challenge is ensuring the accuracy and reliability of AI-generated content. While ChatGPT provides instant answers and explanations, it requires careful monitoring to avoid misinformation and inaccuracies. There needs to be collaborative efforts between AI      developers, educators, and institutions to refine the AI tutoring experience and maintain educational standards.

Navigating the Changing AI Landscape

This research from provides a lens for higher ed institutions to understand this profound shift in educational tools. Educators and institutions must find a balance between the benefits of AI and the importance of human interaction and interpersonal skills development. While AI tutors like ChatGPT can provide personalized learning experiences and promote student-driven learning, they should not completely replace human tutors.

This fast-moving technology is changing many areas of daily life. AI should be seen as a valuable tool to support and enhance learning, one that complements the guidance and expertise of human tutors. The survey reminds us that our responsibility is to use technology to provide the best learning experiences for students. By embracing AI’s potential, higher ed can create a learning environment where students receive the benefits of both AI and human tutors, paving the way for a more inclusive, personalized, and effective educational landscape.

For more articles on AI and higher education, see:

The Future of AI in Personalized Learning in Higher Education

ChatGPT, Generative AI are Wake Up Calls for Higher Education

Presence of AI Content Detector Impacts Student Usage

ChatGPT: Reimagining Assessment in Higher Education

Artificial Intelligence to Play Instrumental Role in the Future of Higher Education