`Cheating on Net' inquiry at university
Saturday 10 July 1999
Sadly for the class of "Computer Science 1h", they appear to have proved themselves too adept with their keyboards. At least 90 of 200 students in the class had their grades withheld after exam markers discovered remarkable similarities between their scripts.
"They seem to have been chatting about what they would write," said one university insider. "Unfortunately, it wasn't over coffee. It was using websites, so everyone seems to have come up with the same answer."
Nor was it difficult to find that answer. One website "chat" page offers "a completed Practical 3 program for Computer Science 1h", which can be obtained by e-mail. The author of the crib sheet warns readers, however, that "it's too risky to put on the Web. Remember, don't copy it exactly - only use it as a guide! Power to the people!"
What seems to have happened is that too few took the advice and the examiners caught on. University examination boards know it is all too easy now for students to fake knowledge. No longer do you have to ply your contemporaries with drink or plead hard luck tales of having writer's block or a nervous breakdown.
The market has produced the answer to the idle student's dilemma. Many companies now sell help in cutting corners for tutorials and at exam time.
Cyberessays.com has a free database with thousands of essays that can be used again and again to fob off unsuspecting tutors. The bank is constantly refreshed as hardworking students show solidarity with their slacking peers by posting new essays on the site.
Another site - called 12000papers.com - will use its vast stock of material to write an essay specially customised for you and then fax, e-mail or hand deliver it, depending on the urgency of the situation. A dozen people are employed full-time to meet the demand.
Yesterday, Edinburgh University was remaining po-faced over the class that apparently used a little too much initiative in what a spokesman called its "problem-solving tasks".
"Queries were raised by the examiners in relation to 90 students in the first year of computing science," said the spokesman. "Marks for those students have been withheld until this matter is resolved.
"All the students have been contacted so the examiners can reach a final decision. If the queries are substantiated the the appropriate action will be taken."
That action may be rustication for the students involved. But for the rest of the university population this outbreak of computer cribbing could lead to a shift from continuous assessement and all the temptations that offers. It could, one Edinburgh academic said, mean a return to the great fear of the idle student - more invigilated exams.
- 1 Five-year-old Iris Grace is raising awareness of autism through her extraordinary paintings
- 2 HeForShe campaign: Iceland to follow up Emma Watson speech with UN women's rights conference – for men only
- 3 Car tax disc changes: Two days to go - and they affect you much more than just not displaying a piece of paper
- 4 Teenagers irritable because early school hours mess with their biological clocks
- 5 Now we know whose fault it is if you end up being murdered in Thailand
Isis could become 'world’s first truly terrorist state' and bomb UK with nuclear and chemical weapons, Theresa May warns
Five-year-old Iris Grace is raising awareness of autism through her extraordinary paintings
Car tax disc changes: Five facts you never knew about your (almost obsolete) tax disc
Car tax disc changes: Two days to go - and they affect you much more than just not displaying a piece of paper
Isis an hour away from Baghdad - with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Isis, we are told, is a 'clear and dangerous threat to our way of life'. I’m sorry, but I just don’t buy it
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
The Osborne Ultimatum: Chancellor’s benefits freeze bombshell will affect ten million households
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so
- < Previous
- Next >
£400 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client are currently seekin...
£121 - £142 per day: Randstad Education Luton: Early Years, KS1 & 2 Prima...
£121 - £142 per annum: Randstad Education Luton: Early Years, KS1 & 2 Prim...
£121 - £142 per day: Randstad Education Luton: Primary supply teacher Hertford...