As long as there have been colleges, there’s been cheating, but thanks to new technology, some students are taking academic cheating to a whole new level. Forget scribbling notes on your arm or tucking a cheat sheet in your pocket, because students today have smartphones and will even buy test content and term papers online.
The issue of cheating is so widespread in schools from all around the world that it’s getting impossible to control. In an attempt to avoid frauds in baccalaureate exams, the Algerian government temporarily blocked Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites during exam time in June, 2016. Earlier that month, individuals had published exam material on these social networks, and others promoted that exposure.
Social media networks are game-changing cheating tools for students, but today’s tech generation is not limited to them. They rely on other technologically sophisticated options, including the following.
- Students use assignment writing services like AssignmentMasters to buy multiple choice answers, essays, research papers, and all other kinds of academic content. These services are gaining momentum on the market since there is no way for teachers and schools to control their usage. Students get custom-tailored plagiarism-free content, so it’s nearly impossible for a teacher to recognize the work that’s been purchased.
- Graphic calculators, which are allowed into most exams. Students can download cheating material on these calculators. Although many professors and schools are banning them from exam halls, graphic calculators are still among the favorite tools for cheating.
- Smartphones and tablets are usually not allowed in exam halls, but students find different ways to bring them in. They use them to take pictures of notes and message friends who send the answers to them. A headset elevates the game. Unnoticeable Bluetooth earpieces make communication with the outside world easy. Students connect with their friends outside the exam halls. They have access to the Internet and textbooks, so all answers are at their disposal.
- Smartwatches look almost like usual watches, but they are powerful tools that can download and store data. In 2015, Kyoto University banned students from wearing any type of watch in an attempt to prevent them from using smartwatches for cheating.
Cheating Is Super Easy
College classes are way too big, and the exam halls are always full. That makes it easy for a student to bring in not only cheat sheets but different tech gadgets as well. In the past, it was the struggling students who were more likely to cheat, and they only wanted to get passing grades. Today, the system is more demanding and the competition is brutal, so even above-average students are implementing different cheating methods into practice.
When they don’t have enough time to write all papers, they buy them from an online service. When they aren’t ready for an exam, they get their invisible Bluetooth earpiece and get the answers they need. These students cannot risk their GPA and scholarships, so cheating no longer carries a social stigma. Everyone is doing it, so even the best students don’t stay immune to the trends.
Universities rely on different methods to fight cheating, but most of them are old-fashioned. Professors are trying to make students believe in the honor codes and sense of fairness to prevent dishonest behavior, but they still realize that grades, rather than knowledge, are the main focus of today’s educational system, so students are trying to improve their GPA by any means necessary.
If You Can’t Beat Them, Join Them
As a result of all the new lifehacks that help cheaters, schools and teachers started embracing technology with the purpose to identify and prevent cheating. They use anti-plagiarism software to catch content that has been plagiarized or paraphrased from online sources. Students can no longer submit papers that are copied from Wikipedia and other websites, but they can still buy original work from online services.
Professors are getting more tech-savvy every day, but can they prevent students from cheating? Some teachers create phony websites that answer the specific questions from the tests or homework assignments. Many students take the bait and they simply copy the information provided on those sites.
The monitoring during tests and exams is getting tougher by the day. Colleges are banning smartphones, tablets, and smartwatches from the exam calls, and they don’t allow the students to wear hats, sweatshirts, zipper jackets, and other clothing items that could provide storage space for tech gadgets and cheat sheets. Still, the cheating revolution continues because students are getting more creative with their cheating lifehacks.
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