Saturday, April 5, 2014

On cheating

The Atlantic reports on the reaction of some college teachers to a student who advertised on Craig's List for someone to help them cheat on a placement exam and possibly also an on-line course.

People do cheat, even at Michigan. Of the three places I have been, I liked Maryland's process for dealing with cheaters best. It involved (in part) students judging other students, and the students were typically much tougher on cheaters than administrators. Michigan's process works reasonably well too, but is a bit more lenient than I would like.

Western Ontario, at least when I was there, was neither as organized as Maryland and Michigan in how it handled cheaters nor as tough. I had a student at Western who plagiarized on their honors thesis (!). I wanted to toss him out of the program but in the end was only able to give him a low grade. He had the temerity to come back a few days later and ask for more points. That day was the closest I ever came to physically harming a student.

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