Experts on what ChatGPT reveals about urology residency … – Urology Times




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“What we did learn and what reinforced our beliefs [is] that [the] current way of writing reference letters is not great,” says Larissa Bresler, MD, DABMA.
In this video, Larissa Bresler, MD, DABMA, and Kristin G. Baldea, MD, highlight key findings from the publication, “Utilization of ChatGPT for appraising letters of recommendation in urology residency applications: Ready for prime time?” Bresler is an associate professor of urology, obstetrics and gynecology at Loyola Medicine in Chicago, Illinois, and the chief diversity officer and diversity & inclusion committee chair for the American Urological Association. Baldea is an assistant professor of surgery and urology at Loyola Medicine in Chicago, Illinois.

Video Transcript:
Bresler: Well, I think we all agree that Chat is not ready for primetime. At one point, the ACGME floated using it for application review and scoring. Our study as well as some industry reports outside of medicine show that it's not ready for primetime. The computing resources and the evolution of this artificial intelligence is not at the point where it's safe to use for letters of reference or for application sorting at this particular juncture. What we did learn and what reinforced our beliefs [is] that [the] current way of writing reference letters is not great. The template letters all tend to clump students in top 25%, and the narrative letters are simply not helpful. I would say 3/4 of them recount a person's CV, which is already included in applications, and the other 25% is superlative. It has these exaggerated adjectives, which Chat picked up on. And there is a repeat use of adjectives for students, which are also not helpful. So, this study shows us 2 things. One, please don't use Chat just yet. And 2, we need to find a better way of writing reference letters that is actually helpful to program directors and committees, like Dr. Baldea reads probably 1000s of pages of reference letters. We have to train the letter writers how to do it, and also for us how to understand it.
Baldea: This is all in the setting of losing abilities to differentiate applications, with step 1 going pass/fail, which in general is a positive thing for many reasons, but it doesn't help us to differentiate applications. Then on top of it, many medical schools are also going pass/fail, or taking away ranking systems, leaving the AOA designation, so it does get harder and harder to differentiate applicants. The thought is that program directors are putting more weight on letters of recommendation, while at the same time, they're also very difficult to interpret.
This transcription has been edited for clarity.
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