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'remarkably good'

ChatGPT passed a Wharton MBA exam, and academics are taking note

While researching the capabilities of OpenAI's artificial intelligence-enhanced text generator, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School found that the company's GPT-3 chatbot was able to pass a final exam for the school's Master of Business Administration program, NBC News reports.

Professor Christian Terwiesch, who authored a research paper on the matter, said that the chatbot passed the exam with a score between a B- and B. He said the score is proof of the bot's "remarkable ability to automate some of the skills of highly compensated knowledge workers in general and specifically the knowledge workers in the jobs held by MBA graduates including analysts, managers, and consultants."

Terwiesch noted that GPT-3 did an "amazing job at basic operations management and process analysis questions including those that are based on case studies." It was also "remarkably good at modifying its answers in response to human hints," he concluded.

The experiment was conducted with the GPT-3 model, a predecessor of OpenAI's viral ChatGPT bot, which was "fine-tuned from a model in the GPT-3.5 series," per the company's website. The advanced capabilities of the newer, viral model have sparked debates about whether generative AI signals the end for human employees. Educators have also expressed concern that the program could inspire widespread and virtually undetectable cheating. In November 2022, Kevin Bryan, an associate professor at the University of Toronto, tested ChatGPT's ability to write graduate-level responses and concluded that "the OpenAI chat is frankly better than the average MBA at this point."

Though he was impressed by Chat GPT3's exam results, Terwiesch noted that the program "at times makes surprising mistakes in relatively simple calculations at the level of sixth-grade math." Still, he said the results of his experiment have "important implications for business school education, including the need for exam policies, curriculum design focusing on collaboration between human and AI, opportunities to simulate real-world decision-making processes, the need to teach creative problem solving, improved teaching productivity, and more."