Every progress has setbacks; sometimes the conservative status quo goes out of its way to ensure it is not dethroned. Other times, the hoity-toity neoteric proclaims their imaginations as the so-called emerging reality that cannot be undone. Chat GPT has become one of the most used Artificial Intelligence in this technological era since November 2022. As expected, it has struck the paleo-conservatives with great terror and has befuddled the minds of technophiles.

Nigeria and other African countries that use CHAT GPT

Chat GPT is a conversational Open AI like Microsoft’s copilot, Google’s GeminihuggingFace, among others that have a mechanical mind that can give prompt responses to any query. The current version relies mostly on Generative Pre-trained Transformer (GPT) 3.5 and 4 which has already been trained on large data to generate answers for theoretical questions, solve mathematical problems, and converse.

Map of Africa Showing the top ten African Countries that used chat GPT

Available data shows that Kenya ranks first among the top ten African countries that used this interactive agent while Egypt ranked tenth. Even though, as illustrated in the map above, Nigeria currently ranks as ninth among the top ten African countries that are using CHAT GPT, the fast-rising number of Nigerians that continue to use this software as seen in the figure above suggests that the country is more likely to experience a continuous increase in the usage of this humanlike AI conversationist. 

Those using chat GPT in Nigeria

Earlier this year, Bulus (2024) suggested that there had been an increase in the demand for the integration of Artificial Intelligence in the Nigerian educational sphere. This, according to him, is due to what he described as a favorable correlation between the usage of AI technologies in higher education and positive learning outcomes in terms of technology usage. However, the majority of Chat GPT users in Nigeria are learners and trainers who perceive that this Open AI can tremendously help them to do better academically. 

                  Fig 2 Chart Showing the usage of chat GPT in Nigeria since 2023(Data sourced from Google Trends)

As seen in the chart above, since the inception of chat GPT in June 2023, open AI has never performed below average. Considering the overwhelming acceptance of this AI tool, it is safe to assume that, to a large extent, the question that Hurbert L. Dreyfus once asked fifty-nine years ago, seeking to know to what extent can a digital computer be programmed to exhibit the sort of simple intelligent behavior characteristic of children, and sometimes animals such as playing games, solving simple problems, reading sentences and recognizing patterns, has been answered by it. But now the question that begs for an answer is what implication this invention poses particularly on education. 

The answers and reasons for concern generated by chat GPT

As stated in the paragraph above, chat GPT has answered many questions that border on critical abilities, mathematical reasoning, and prompt responses to seemingly complex queries.  Haleem et al (2023) observed that it is equipped with a broad range of talents using Machine Learning On-demand which enables it to “create elementary computer code, crude financial analysis, humorous poems and songs, perfect impersonations, reflective essays on just about any subject, summaries of technical papers or scientific ideas in natural language, chat-based customer service, accurate predictions, tailored guidance, and answers”. Perhaps, it is this ability to provide solutions and support swiftly that has enticed the hearts of many learners. There is no doubt that this AI chatbot is capable of aiding the improvement and acquisition of new skills. Most scholars can be adopted by students for various reasons ranging from the development of ideas, explanation of concepts, simplification, and summarization of complex study materials among others.

Despite all of this and many more prospects that this generative AI has exhibited, findings revealed that 72% of college professors and 58% of K-12 (I.e., equivalent to Nigeria’s SS 3) teachers express concern about its role in cheating.   For instance, a few months after it was relaunched, Indian Today reported that the RV University, Bengaluru banned the use of chat  GPT after catching some students who were using it for exams, assignments, and lab tests. A survey revealed that 51% of students think that using chat GPT is cheating, 50% of teachers knew at least a student who was punished or faced negative consequences for using ChatGPT to do their assignments, and 26% of K 12 teachers have caught a student cheating with ChatGPT.

In a similar vein, The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) in Ghana said that candidates in 235 schools that took part in the 2023 exams provided AI-generated answers. In Nigeria, a female student allegedly scored zero by her lecturer on the basis that her answers were AI-generated answers, and Science Po University Paris, in the press release that announced the ban on the use of chat GPT by students cited the tendency of “fraud” and “plagiarism” as the reason for its ban. 

What bad effect can chat GPT have on students?

This and many other challenges that accompany the advent of this Natural Language Processing tool have elicited mixed feelings from scholars.  The majority of them have expressed concerns on what is to be the magnitude of the negative impact that chat GPT could have on education. A research article published in the Spry Contemporary Educational Practice revealed that excessive use of Artificial Intelligence tools like Chat GPT can distract students, lower their academic performance, and affect their grades. 

Fig. 3 Diagram showing the chain of possible negative effects that chat GPT could have on students. 

As seen in the diagram above, there is no doubt that the opportunities that chat GPT presents have been threatened by the complexities of the challenges that accompany it. But should we or should we not ban its usage in the Nigerian education system?

The way to go on this 

Though many orthodox educators frowned at the usage of chat GPT by students, it is quite obvious to most that an attempt to eliminate it can only beget the fate of a soft person’s head that is used to flock to the hardness of a stubborn rock. Thus, as suggested by scholars, like Dr. Helen T. Olojede, chat GPT can be highly beneficial to students’ learning but there’s a need for educational institutions to come up with policies that guide and regulate its usage by students.  


Bali, B. (2024). Analysis of emerging trends in artificial intelligence in education in Nigeria. Research Square.

Elsen-Rooney, M. (2023, October 30). NYC education department blocks ChatGPT on school devices, networks. Chalkbeat.

Haleem, A., Javaid, M., & Singh, R. P. (2023). An era of ChatGPT as a significant futuristic support tool: A study on features, abilities, and challenges.

Hurbert, L. D. (1972). What computers can’t do.

Nerdynav. (2024, January 5). ChatGPT cheating statistics & impact on education (2024). Nerdynav.

Regional Training and Research Institute for Distance and Open Learning (RETRIDOL) Webinar. (2023, February 23). Artificial intelligence and the future of learning: Implications of ChatGPT for distance education [Video]. Zoom. Retrieved May 11, 2024, from

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