Shoosmiths advises TC seekers on using AI in applications

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By Rhys Duncan on


Refine original thoughts, not replace them

Shoosmiths has become one of the first law firms to issue guidance to aspiring solicitors on the appropriate use of artificial intelligence (AI) tools in vacation scheme and training contract applications.

In a recent blog post, the firm’s emerging talent advisor, Laura Hartigan, provides guidance on how prospective solicitors can utilise AI tools to enhance their applications. But she also cautions against merely copying responses generated by bots.

The advice comes amidst what Legal Cheek understands is a rise in the number of students misusing AI tools like ChatGPT when completing law firm applications.

Whilst students are welcome to use AI tools in their initial applications, Hartigan warns that she and her recruitment colleagues “don’t condone simply copying and pasting AI-generated responses”.

“Use AI as a tool to refine and develop your own original thoughts, not replace them”, she says. “Aspiring solicitors must remember that integrity and honesty are fundamental attributes that cannot be replaced by technology.”

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The areas where tools can be of most use, Hartigan suggests, are in aiding with time management and organisation, proofreading answers, and suggesting amendments to draft questions.

Echoing previous advice given by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), Hartigan also warns students not to “blindly accept AI-generated content without understanding its sources or implications”.

What’s more, “trying to pass off AI-generated content as solely your work undermines your credibility and demonstrates a lack of respect for the application process”, she says.

The blog goes on to urge students to broaden their understanding of AI and its use in the legal field, recommending they attend events, including those run by Legal Cheek, as a prime resource to help with this.

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