Educators are showing serious concern about cheating in high schools and for good reason. Cheating has become commonplace in high schools, largely because students are using technology to gather and share information in rather innovation ways. Since students are a little more tech-savvy than many adults, grown-ups are always playing catch-up when it comes to finding out what students are up to.
But this technology-centered cat-and-mouse activity can be fatal to your educational future. Students start to blur the ethical boundaries and think it’s OK to do many things, simply because they’ve got away with them in the past.
There’s a big catch to blurring the line when it comes to cheating. While parents and high school teachers might be less savvy than their students about using cell phones and calculators to share work, and too overworked to catch cheaters, college professors are a little different. They have graduate assistants, college honour courts, and cheat-detecting software that they can tap into.
The bottom line is that students can develop habits in high school that will get them expelled when they use them in college, and sometimes students won’t even realize their “habits” are illegal.
Since students use tools and techniques that have not been used before, they might not always know what really constitutes cheating. For your information, the following activities constitute cheating. Some of these can even get you kicked out of college.
- Buying a paper from an Internet site
- Sharing homework answers via IMs, email, text messaging, or any other device
- Using a whiteboard to share answers
- Having another student write a paper for you
- Cutting and pasting text from the Internet without citing it
- Using sample essays from the Internet
- Using text messaging to tell somebody else an answer
- Programming notes into your calculator
- Taking and/or sending a cell phone picture of test material or notes
- Video recording lectures with cell phones and replaying during test
- Surfing web for answers during a test
- Using a pager to receive information during a test
- Viewing notes on your PDA, electronic calendar, cell phone, or other devices during a test
- Storing definitions in a graphing calculator or cell phone
- Breaking into the teacher’s computer files
- Using a watch to hold notes
- Using a laser pen to “write” and send answers
If you’ve been transmitting answers to homework or test questions, there’s a pretty good chance you’ve been cheating—even though it might have been unintentional.
Unfortunately, there’s an old saying that states “ignorance of the law is no excuse,” and when it comes to cheating, that old saying holds up. If you cheat, even by accident, you’re risking your academic career.