New free online guide ‘Teaching with ChatGPT’ empowers teachers to adopt generative AI tools for the classroom


London, UK – 23 November 2023: Supported by The Hg Foundation, a grant-giving charity with a focus on removing barriers to education and skills in technology, the new, free online resource to empower UK teachers and other educators to use ChatGPT effectively to enhance their day-to-day work, is launched today.


The guide was created with input from teachers and tutors from schools across England, including from Ark and Academies Enterprise Trust.  This new guide will help teachers use ChatGPT to come up with high-quality new activity ideas for their pupils, develop practice questions and model answers, and harness this ground-breaking technology in a range of other ways.


In research to develop the guide it was found that, of teachers who had already used ChatGPT and similar AI tools, the vast majority reported that it had saved them time, improved lessons and reduced their time to prepare for their classes. Despite this experience, as of September 2023, 50% of teachers said that they had not yet used generative AI.1 The goal of the guide is to leverage this new technology in ways that will enable the easier and faster generation of high-quality teaching resources, and also to contribute to teacher retention and recruitment by reducing teacher workload. Through the guide, The Hg Foundation also hopes to reduce educational disadvantage by equipping more schools and teachers to make the best use of AI in classes.


Welcoming the launch of the guide, James Turner, CEO of The Hg Foundation said: “At The Hg Foundation, we aim to address barriers to tech careers. We know from our research that Generative AI tools hold huge potential to help improve educational equity and tackle disadvantage. This guidance is a very practical tool which we hope will help all teachers, especially those serving the poorest students.”


A comprehensive and user-friendly guide


‘Teaching with ChatGPT’ offers a comprehensive, free-to-access and user-friendly resource designed to enhance lesson preparation and resource development, aiming to extend the benefits of this technology beyond early adopters, and to reach a broad spectrum of educational settings. It features video demonstrations, step-by-step instructions, and example ChatGPT conversations which users can follow along with. It focuses on six key areas highly rated by teachers:


  • Finding activity ideas in seconds
  • Getting ready-made practice questions
  • Adapting the materials to work for your group
  • Crafting model answers and building mock exam questions
  • Getting effective explanations and creating step-by-step examples
  • Testing student understanding and avoiding misconceptions


A means of addressing the challenge of teacher retention


In 2021, Department for Education research found that 24%2 of teachers left the profession within three years of qualifying. A 2023 survey found that almost 9%3 of the state school teaching workforce resigned in 2022. Workload is a key driver of retention issues – the 2019 ‘Teacher Workload Survey’4 highlighted the substantial time that teachers in England spend on lesson preparation, averaging 7.5 hours per week.


‘Teaching with ChatGPT’ aims to support teachers by helping reduce the time and effort involved in lesson and resource preparation. Teachers involved in the guide’s development reported not only time savings but also improved lesson quality, citing ChatGPT’s ability to inspire new content delivery methods and engage students more effectively.  The Hg Foundation is exploring with the Education Endowment Foundation how the impact of the guide on teacher time and lesson planning can be best assessed.


Built with teachers, for teachers


The guide was developed through a two-month testing phase in Autumn 2023, working with ~40 teachers and tutors across England to identify where educators find ChatGPT most helpful and what techniques are needed to get the best out of it.


This guide was supported by The Hg Foundation and produced with support from Bain & Company’s Social Impact practice, and from Bain’s Advanced Analytics Group. The Hg Foundation is also grateful for contributions and support in developing the guide from Academies Enterprise Trust, Ark, Tutor Trust, Mossbourne Community Academy, Mounts Bay Academy, Newcastle Sixth Form College, The Blue School, The Mirfield Free Grammar, Walkergate Community School and William Tyndale Primary School.


Gemma Cotton, partner at Bain & Company who works extensively with the firm’s Social Impact practice, said: We know teacher workload is a big issue in schools in the UK, which is contributing to recruitment and retention issues.  We think ChatGPT has great potential for use by teachers, so we wanted to get practical and provide a starting point for new users on how to get great results for use in the classroom.


Professor Becky Francis CBE, CEO of the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF), said: “Used well, generative AI tools like ChatGPT hold huge potential for the classroom, particularly in reducing teacher workload. But at the moment we know very little about the impact these new technologies could have on wider outcomes, as well as how best to maximise their effectiveness. It’s great we’re able to explore how best to evaluate the impact of this timely new resource. Our hope is that we can generate valuable evidence to support the wider sector.”


Lucy Heller, Chief Executive, Ark, said: “All schools and teachers are having to find their way in this brave new world, but they know that the fundamentals of excellent teaching remain. That is what this guide gets right. It provides some immediate ways to empower teachers – giving them tips and tools to save time and get more done using the power of the new AI tools that are emerging.”


Matt H, Tutor, Tutor Trust, said: “I think (AI) is going to be a staple in education as a whole, not just tutoring. I think getting on the curve now can only be a strength to tutors everywhere.”