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Unveiling ChatGPT in tourism education: exploring perceptions, advantages and recommendations from educators

Ozlem Altun (Faculty of Tourism, Eastern Mediterranean University, Famagusta, Türkiye)
Mehmet Bahri Saydam (Faculty of Tourism, Eastern Mediterranean University, Famagusta, Türkiye)
Tuna Karatepe (Faculty of Tourism, Eastern Mediterranean University, Famagusta, Türkiye)
Ştefana Maria Dima (European Center for Research in Economics and Business (ECREB), West University of Timisoara, Timisoara, Romania)

Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes

ISSN: 1755-4217

Article publication date: 26 February 2024

Issue publication date: 29 April 2024

226

Abstract

Purpose

Following the remarkable debut of ChatGPT and its rapid adoption by a global audience since its launch in November 2022, this study delves into educators' perceptions of ChatGPT within the specialized domains of tourism and hospitality education. While acknowledging ChatGPT’s swift rise and advanced capabilities, this research aims to comprehensively explore educators' perspectives, advantages and concerns regarding its integration into academic settings.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative approach was utilized to reveal dominant themes from in-depth, semi-structured face-to-face interviews with twenty lecturers in tourism faculties in North Cyprus. Collected responses from respondents were subjected to analysis using Leximancer software.

Findings

Our analysis unearthed seven significant themes encapsulating educators' perceptions of ChatGPT: 1 – “reliability and accuracy concerns”; 2 – “dependency”; 3 – “student engagement”; 4 – “ethical considerations”; 5 – “time efficiency and productivity”; 6 – “teacher-student interaction” and 7 – “learning flexibility”. Noteworthy positive perceptions emerged regarding “student engagement,” “time efficiency and productivity,” and “learning flexibility.”

Originality/value

This study contributes to the originality of research by addressing the underexplored aspect of educators' perceptions of ChatGPT within the domains of tourism and hospitality education, shedding light on its potential implications, advantages and drawbacks in a specialized educational context. Furthermore, it aims to offer insights into educators' recommendations for the effective incorporation of ChatGPT technologies into this specific educational setting, filling a crucial gap in understanding the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) in specialized fields of study.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The corresponding author would like to thank the anonymous reviewers who had given constructive comments to this paper.

Funding: This research received no external funding.

Conflicts of interest: The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Citation

Altun, O., Saydam, M.B., Karatepe, T. and Dima, Ş.M. (2024), "Unveiling ChatGPT in tourism education: exploring perceptions, advantages and recommendations from educators", Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes, Vol. 16 No. 1, pp. 105-118. https://doi.org/10.1108/WHATT-01-2024-0018

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2024, Emerald Publishing Limited

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