In a comment on the original Reddit thread, the author notes that the professor and the school are working to resolve the issues with several students whose diplomas are on hold following the incident. One student has been exonerated, and it's likely that more will be. Here is the update, via Reddit.

In a meeting with the Prof, and several administrative officials we learned several key points.

  1. It was initially thought the entire class’s diplomas were on hold but it was actually a little over half of the class

  2. The diplomas are in “hold” status until an “investigation into each individual is completed”

  3. The school stated they weren’t barring anyone from graduating/ leaving school because the diplomas are in hold and not yet formally denied.

I have spoken to several students so far and as of the writing of this comment, 1 student has been exonerated through the use of timestamps in google docs and while their diploma is not released yet it should be.

Admin staff also stated that at least 2 students came forward and admitted to using chat gpt during the semester. This no doubt greatly complicates the situation for those who did not.

In other news, the university is well aware of this reddit post, and I believe this is the reason the university has started actively trying to exonerate people. That said, thanks to all who offered feedback and great thanks to the media companies who reached out to them with questions, this no doubt, forced their hands.

Allegedly several people have sent the professor threatening emails, and I have to be the first to say, that is not cool. I greatly thank people for the support but that is not what this is about.

Also heard from professor that his job may or may not exist after today due to his foul language and unprofessional communications with students but not due to the AI accusations.

Finally, the prof issued an apology to the 1 student exonerated so far and it appears the school is well aware they are not yet equipping to deal with AI in an academic setting, and this will be a HUGE learning day for not just A&M commerce but the system as a whole. My goal for today is to ensure all the other students receive exoneration if they so deserve.

Original story below.


COMMERCE, Texas (KPEL News) -  A professor at the Texas A&M campus in Commerce, Texas, has apparently flunked an entire class of seniors, leaving the university to withhold their diplomas. The reason he failed them? He claims they used AI to complete multiple assignments.

The story originally popped up on the social media website Reddit, where a user shares an email from a professor at the school the claimed the class used "Chat GTP" to write their assignments.

Texas A&M commerce professor fails entire class of seniors blocking them from graduating- claiming they all use “Chat GTP”
by u/DearKick in ChatGPT

"You should all be able to see your final grade in the course at this point on D2L," the professor allegedly wrote in the email. "Before everyone e-mails me individually read this e-mail carefully. In Grading your last three assignments I have opened my own account for Chat GTP. I copy and paste your responses in this account and Chat GTP will tell me if the program generated the content. I put everyone's last three assignments through two separate times and if they were both claimed by Chat GTP you received a 0."

It is presumed that the professor meant "ChatGPT," which is a generative AI program provided by OpenAI. It is available for free online.

The person who shared the professor's email added context in a subsequent comment.

It was allegedly 3 different essays about agricultural science occurring in the last few months of classes. The professor elected not to grade them until today, (graduation was yesterday) so now the university is withholding an entire class’s diplomas after they walked the stage.

I have so far spoken to 3 affected students who have timestamped google docs proving they did not use gpt, to which the prof (Dr. Jared Mumm) ignored the emails instead only replying on their grading software in the remarks: “I dont grade AI bull----.”

There have been concerns in the academic community with generative AI being used by students to come up with responses to writing prompts, images, etc. Of course, using technology to cheat your way through school isn't exactly new.

However, as users on Reddit note, ChatGPT will almost always answer "Yes" when asked if it wrote something.

One user asked the AI program if it wrote the professor's email.

Credit: Reddit
Credit: Reddit

The original author of the Reddit post did say that the university had not commented, but information pushing back against the professor's claims was sent to the university president.

At the time of publication, the students from the class had not received word as to whether or not the university was investigating the professor's claims. We will update the story as more information becomes available.

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