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GEN / APA Citation Style: Using & Citing ChatGPT

Using ChatGPT

ChatGPT is widely hailed as a tool that can make our lives easier. It was trained on massive amounts of text from the internet and provides responses by using probability to guess the most likely word that will follow after another word. Its responses may sound intelligent and human-like but it is unable to reason.

Note that ChatGPT does not have the most current information and it can confidently give incorrect information (known as "hallucination" in artificial intelligence).

As a student, you need to learn how to do research, think critically, evaluate sources, communicate effectively and much more. These are critical skills that will serve you well in your studies, everyday life and future employment, so if you rely on ChatGPT or other generative AI tools to produce all the answers for your school work, you will not improve much in these skills.

Here are some DO's and DONT'S for using ChatGPT:


  • First of all, check if your school, diploma or subject has any restrictions about using ChatGPT. 
  • Use ChatGPT and other generative AI tools to support your learning.
  • Cite ChatGPT (see section below) as a source of information as long as you use it, even if you paraphrase the the content.
  • Cross-check facts produced by ChatGPT against other sources of information.


  • Make ChatGPT write your entire assignment as that is considered plagiarism.
  • Make ChatGPT recommend references for your assignment, paper or project as most of them do not exist or are completely irrelevant! Instead, use the library's resources and other reliable sources of information.
  • Rely on ChatGPT for everything. It is not infallible and you do not want to end up sounding like a robot nor become someone who cannot think independently.

For more tips and information about using GenerativeAI effectively and responsibly,
refer to the ChatGPT Playbook (TP login required)

Citing ChatGPT

Suggested ways to cite ChatGPT:

In-text citation

Parenthetical citation: (OpenAI, 2023)

Narrative citation: OpenAI (2023)


OpenAI. (2023). ChatGPT (Sep 25 version) [Large language model].

Note: Include the version number for ChatGPT. This can be found at the bottom of the webpage.

The information in square brackets describes the type of source.


Refer to this page for more information about citing ChatGPT and other AI tools.