Thursday, August 09, 2007

My plan to deal with cheating (Do I dare?)

School starts for me in less than a month. I wish it weren't the case, but I know that within a few days or a few weeks, somebody is going to cheat in one of my classes. I hate cheating. I hate catching kids and then having to deal with it. I hate knowing that someone is cheating, but not being able to catch him (or her). And I hate wondering if someone is cheating, but not being sure.

Cheating screws up everything I'm trying to do as a teacher. More than anything else, I want my kids to learn how to be good students. Much of what I do in my classes involves trying to get kids to be conscientious and to make an honest effort. If kids regularly do the assignments in my class, pay attention, and do a reasonable amount of studying for tests, they can be successful. My strategy is that as they see their work paying off, they will be motivated to continue to work or to work even harder. As they do that, they will be learning the material that I want them to learn, and as they do that, they will find it more and more interesting. The more interesting the subject becomes to them, the more incentive there will be to continue to do the things that a good student does. And as students see other students having this success, some of them might be motivated to do the same thing.

The honest work that students do in my classes is the foundation to all of this, and when students cheat, they take a wrecking ball to that foundation. They may gain the success, but when they do, it is for exactly the wrong reason. They haven't learned any of what I've wanted them to learn. In fact, if they get away with cheating, they learn the exact opposite of what I wanted them to learn. Instead of their success motivating other students to work hard, they motivate others to cheat as well. The more students who get away with it, the more students are motivated to follow in their crooked footsteps. I hate cheating!

This year, I am seriously thinking about adopting what would truly be a no-tolerance policy for cheating. If I can get the approval of my principal (and that's pretty iffy!), and if I have the guts to go through with it, any student that I catch cheating in any way--eyeballing on a quiz, copying an assignment, using a cheat sheet, you name it--will get an F for the marking period.

My policy in the past has been to give cheaters a zero for whatever it was that they were caught cheating on, but I'm convinced that's not enough. What's a zero on one assignment or quiz when you've gotten away with it ten or twenty times? Cheating has become a part of student culture in schools throughout the nation, and I'm convinced that part of the reason is that we are too lenient.

I know there are some other teachers who have the policy I am contemplating, and I can't help but feel that it's time for me to step up to the plate. If anybody out there thinks that this will be easy, I know it won't be. Here are some of the problems:

1. What if I'm wrong? There have been two times during my career when circumstances strongly indicated that students had been cheating, but I ended up being convinced that they hadn't. Thankfully, I was very careful in both situations, and never actually made any accusations. Nevertheless, this helps me to understand why principals would be less than thrilled to see their teachers following the policy I'm considering.

2. In large part because of the incidents just described, even when the evidence seems incontrovertible, there is the thought in my mind that maybe I'm making a mistake. I feel a lot better when the student owns up to the cheating, but there are some who never do. With the consequences being this stiff, I'm afraid that the percentage of kids who refuse to admit to what they did will increase dramatically.

3. Those kids have parents. No matter how clear the evidence is, there are a lot of parents who will believe their kids. "My daughter wouldn't lie to me!" With an F for the marking period at stake, those situations are not going to be fun.

4. There are some situations in which I know a student or students are cheating, and I've got some proof, but I don't know if I've got enough to convince a neutral third party (my principal), and definitely not enough to convince a parent. When I've had lesser penalties (zero for the test or assignment), I've often been willing to impose that penalty. It will be tougher for me to do that if the penalty is an F for the marking period.

5. Cheating is an equal opportunity character flaw. There are a lot of otherwise good student who cheat. Their grades are very important to them, and their grades are very important to their parents. When one of those good students are caught, the feces is going to hit the fan.

6. I think I'm an honest person, but I know I'm not perfect. Once I start clamping down on some cheaters, everything I do in school in town, and anywhere else for that matter, is going to be subject to extremely close scrutiny.

7. I really do value my relationship with my students--individually as well as collectively. Past experience tells me that some of the kids who get nailed for cheating in my classes will be kids that I've had wonderful relationships with. That is going to be hard.

So what do you think? Should I go ahead with this, or should I back off? I'd love to hear the thoughts of anybody on this.

26 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I applaud the idea and totally understand your motivation--I have the same frustrations. But maybe I'm too cynical, but I'd never trust an administrator to back me on something like this. Plus, again, I'd always be afraid of litigation. Good luck with this though! I hope it works.

8/09/2007 9:31 PM  
Blogger Peter Thies said...

What about something half-way? If you cheat on a quiz, you get a zero on that quiz, and your grade on the preceding quiz goes from whatever it was to a zero, as well. This increases the price of cheating, and sort of affects "the time I didn't catch you", but without the weight of an F for the quarter.

8/10/2007 5:01 AM  
Blogger the anonymous teacher said...

We have the policy at our school, in the student handbook that students sign off on, that if a student is caught cheating once on anything, be it a homework assignment, quiz, etc., s/he is given a zero for the assignment. If s/he is caught cheating a second time in the same class (meaning math, English, science), s/he is given a zero for the marking period. You'd think they'd learn after the first time, but nope, sadly enough, many students get that big fat zero, and that's difficult to recover from.
I always tell my kids the first day of class that if they cheat it's like playing Russian roulette. They may get away with it once, twice or a hundred times, but eventually I will catch them and nail them to the wall. I also tell them that when I do, I don't want any tears or complaints.
On most assignments, it's difficult to cheat in English, so I don't have to worry about it as much.

8/10/2007 5:18 AM  
Blogger Mark said...

I don't have a problem with your proposed policy.

But, there may be a structural problem you need to consider. What if you catch a student cheating early in the marking period? They now no longer have a reason to do *any* work (I assume that they won't do the work simply to learn the material) because they are guaranteed an 'F' no matter what.

Is this result okay? If not ...

-Mark Roulo

8/10/2007 12:08 PM  
Anonymous Ian H. said...

I kind of have a two-tier policy with that - I divide the work the students do into assignments and projects. If the students fail to complete an assignment, or cheat on it, they get a zero for that assignment. If they fail to hand in a project, or cheat on it, they get a zero for the course. I had to fail a student for cheating on a project last year, and she wasn't happy about it, but the administration and the parents were on board (the evidence was incontrovertible).

8/10/2007 12:14 PM  
Blogger Dennis Fermoyle said...

Thanks to all of you for your comments on this.

Anonymous, the litigation thing is always in the back of my mind. I usually try to have pretty good proof that I can show someone else before making accusations about cheating, but there have been times when I've acted because I knew the student was cheating, but I really didn't have that kind of proof. How can you prove you saw someone look at someone else's paper? So you're right. I might be opening my up to something ugly if I failed someone for the quarter in a situation like that.

Peter, I've been doing something like you suggest on my reading quizzes. I keep a backlog of them, so when I catch two people "helping" each other, I'll go back and look at past quizzes. Sometimes kids end up with zeroes for a number of quizzes.

AT, I like your policy, and I might end up doing something like that. That way, there is a warning involved. I'm not quite so far out on the limb.

Mark, I did think about your very good point, and it's something I would have to live with. One thing that helps here is that the semester grade is based on two quarter grades plus their final exam grade, so they would still have something to work for.

Ian, the assignments in my class are mostly the reading assignments, and I evaluate those with quizzes. My problem with just giving a zero on a quiz is that, as I mentioned earlier, when I nail someone on a quiz, sometimes the cheating has been going on for some time.

Thanks again to all of you for your suggestions!

8/10/2007 3:17 PM  
Blogger Lorne said...

Although I was always considered a fairly hard teacher who had exacting standards and was quite unforgiving when it came to cheating, quite honestly I never considered (nor would I have been allowed to do it) giving a student a mark of zero for the entire marking period. I was usually good at spotting plagiarism, the most common form of cheating since I was an English teacher, but there were times when I couldn’t prove it. That experience always frustrated me, but I could never, in good conscience, have penalized a student unless I had solid proof of academic dishonesty.

I think we have to remember that any appearance of a misuse of power is going to be remembered by students. So whatever satisfaction we might derive by presumptively punishing students has to be balanced by the damage we do to ourselves and the principle of innocent until proven guilty.

I have written a fair bit on my own experiences with cheating. Please feel free to check it out.

8/10/2007 4:24 PM  
Blogger Dennis Fermoyle said...

Lorne, I loved your post. I thought it was excellent, and I could identify with everything you said.

Believe me, I'm not trying to abuse whatever power I have, and I am very concerned about perception as well as reality. I've never imposed a penalty for cheating unless I was certain that the cheating had taken place, and that would be doubly true if I were to give someone an F for the quarter.

Maybe your experience is somewhat different than mine, but I see students as being very accepting of cheating. I get that impression from what I see going on, but also from some very honest discussions I've had with students in my sociology classes over the years. That's why I so strongly believe that we need tougher penalties.

8/10/2007 6:50 PM  
Blogger Mrs. Bluebird said...

We have a young sub in our building who's done some long term subbing for us and who handled a cheating incident in a really clever way - he had a trial. He took about ten minutes out of class and actually had the students decide, through a mock trial, if the cheating occurred and what the penalty would be. The result was the class decided the two students were guilty; the cheater received a sentence of zero on the test, and the kid who let him copy got a 50% reduction in his grade. The kids loved it, learned a little government in the process, and the team reported that they saw a marked decrease in cheating after that. Apparently the embarrassment factor of being put on mock trial was a big deterrent. Keep in mind these are 8th graders...

8/10/2007 8:51 PM  
Anonymous Ian H. said...

Lorne - great post. I read your entire series, and it resonated with me. I had two students cheat on a project this past semester. One student's parent was very understanding and was alright with me failing her daughter when the make-up project was not produced. The other claimed that I bore some of the responsibility for her daughter's flagrant plagiarism, as the project I had set was obviously so difficult that students had to resort to cheating. This while her daughter was in the room. What does this teach a student? That cheating is an acceptable response to something "too difficult".

8/10/2007 11:08 PM  
Blogger Dennis Fermoyle said...

"The other claimed that I bore some of the responsibility for her daughter's flagrant plagiarism, as the project I had set was obviously so difficult that students had to resort to cheating. This while her daughter was in the room."

Ian, doesn't that type of thing drive you absolutely nuts. Dealing with cheating incidents is bad enough, but when you have parents who defend their kids for doing it, it makes it that much harder. Obviously, having parents like that is a major reason those kids do cheat, and it's also a reason that I've found that cheating has a tendency to run in families.

I should mention that one of the inspirations for this post was an incident involving a girl I caught cheating at the end of May. I also caught her two sisters cheating when I had them, and all three of them were very pleasant A and B students who you would never suspect until you actually caught them.

8/11/2007 3:21 AM  
Anonymous Mike Sampson said...

I attached my Sony Cybershot to my laptop and recorded every testing session. Several students still cheated-or tried to-and I failed them for that test.

When mommy came up to "straighten" me out, I showed the video. Admin did not like that I had proof. They always want to make the teacher wrong.

8/11/2007 7:22 AM  
Blogger Dennis Fermoyle said...

Mike, it's good to hear that at least one of us is ahead of the kids when it comes to the high-tech stuff. Unfortunately, I'm not!

8/11/2007 9:10 AM  
Blogger Kimberly said...

Your policy sounds similar to my University's policy. They did have a check in that someone suspected of cheating was brought before the judiciary committee. If found guilty you could fail not only that course, but be suspended for the remainder of the semester, or kicked out.

In my 4 years, I never knew of anyone even accused of cheating. Because the policy was so strict, we all credited anyone that helped with a paper the librarian that helped us locate materials, the friend that proof read for us. We even noted that we used spell check on the paper.

I would serious consider what your appeal process will be, because with out a structure that allows students to present their side I can see a parent suing over such a strict policy.

8/12/2007 9:13 AM  
Blogger Dennis Fermoyle said...

Kimberly, I guess we shouldn't be surprised that a place that takes cheating very seriously, like your university, ends up with very little cheating. I'm glad I posted about my plan, because there have been a lot of good suggestions, and yours about having an appeal process is one of them. I will probably back off somewhat, and go with something like the policy Anonymous Teacher wrote about--the F for the marking period being imposed for a second offense instead of the first, and I will see if my principal will agree to taking part in an appeal process. But I really do believe we need to start treating cheating as a more serious offense than we have been.

8/12/2007 1:04 PM  
Anonymous Damian said...

Hi Dennis - I typed a very long, involved response that for some reason didn't get posted, but I'll give you the SparkNotes version: Zero on the assignment on which caught cheating, good; F for the semester, bad, for many reasons, but mainly because that foregone conclusion of failure relieves the student of any responsibility or reason to put forth effort and learn.

I'm very interested to hear what you decide to do. You almost seemed to be talking yourself out of it by the end of your initial post; please keep your readership updated as to what you decide!

8/12/2007 6:08 PM  
Blogger sailorman said...

The advantage of the "zero on assignment" is that it is sort of an automatic punishment-fits-the-crime scenario.

If you cheat on the final exam, or on a major test, then you can have an enormous influence on the final grade in the class. Hell, pick the "right" 10 exams and you can probably pick your college. OTOH, if you cheat on a quiz which represents 1.8% of your final grade, it's obviously less of an infraction.

It's just as bad in terms of the failure to learn. But the harm to the community is not as bad; you're screwing your fellow classmates less. That's why our criminal justice system punishes people more for stealing $10,000 than for stealing $10.

Anyway, I'm cautious about your plan. I think you might consider a more graduated approach. You don't have to limit yourself to a one-test-zero though; I'd make it worse than that. (two, or three, grade-effecting-equivalent zeros.)

And just like most systems, it's a great idea to ramp it up strongly; certainly by the third offense you should be failing them and debatably by the second.

There is one thing you haven't considered, though. Most of your students will have been exposed to teachers who have threatened to punish for cheating. Almost ALL of those past teachers will have failed to do so.

So sure: once you've actually kicked out your first student for cheating on her 0.5%-of-grade in-class homework... they'll believe you. But they have no particular reason to believe you prior to that.

It's as if the U.S. government started throwing people in jail for a decade, just for stealing ten bucks. Everyone would "know" the law. But without any experience of it, they'd be less likely to believe it would really happen. It would take SOME people going to jail to convince the rest.

And the problem? Well, just as in my example: the people who would initially get tossed in jail are not guaranteed to be the worst offenders, or habitual offenders, or, really, the people who we are targeting.

Which means that you're essentially playing the lottery with their futures: whoever happens to get caught first is going to be screwed, no matter whether they're a lifelong cheater who doesn't deserve their last 4 years, or someone who wrote answers on their desk as a form of scribbling.

Compare that to colleges. When you go to a college, there's an EXISTING structure of anti-cheating. There are EXISTING examples of people being expelled or punished; there is an existing culture that recognizes this.

So I'm not saying you can't stop cheating, or that you can't be strict. It's just that you have to acknowledge that changing or implementing a system is much more difficult than sustaining one.

Personally, I think you'd do better if you could create a school-wide, evenly-enforced, policy. But that may not be possible.

One thing's for sure: I don't want my kids to be cheating. I'd support their being punished for doing so. Hell, I'd punish them myself. But if the punishment was entirely disproportionate to the crime, then I'd be pissed.

The greater the effect on their future, the more I'd care about accuracy, too. If they cheat on a minor quiz... Want to fail them on that, or a few, quizzes? Be my guest. Even if you're wrong, it's a lesson to be learned.

Want to make them have a miserable fall, staying after school four days a week and missing soccer practice? I'll start to verify your accusation.

Want to kick them out of honors math, and screw up their college applications? You damn well better have 100%, ironclad, undebatable, proof. And you better expect to be crossexamined about it. In court, if required. Because no offense... but I don't trust you (or anyone else) to make that call right 100% of the time, and I'll be damned if I let my kids take so major a fall because you drop the ball.

8/13/2007 7:30 AM  
Blogger Dennis Fermoyle said...

Damian, I'm sorry your longer comment didn't get on. That's happened to me, too, and I know how frustrating it is. I appreciate your interest in what I'm going to end up doing.

I talked to my principal this morning, and got his approval for giving a zero on the assignment or test the first time I catch someone cheating, but then giving an F for the marking period if I catch the same student again anytime during the year. I want to make it clear that a marking period is not the same as a semester. Three grades go into our school's semester grades--two marking periods, both of which are worth 40%, and the final exam grade which is worth 20%. My principal also agreed to handle any appeals that students and their parents might make.

Sailorman, you and I tend not to see eye to eye, but I really do appreciate your comment. It is something I needed to hear. You reminded me exactly what it will be like to face an angry parent of a teenager who has been caught cheating. It's August, so I haven't had kids for over two months, so there is a tendency for even the most experienced teacher to forget what things like that can be like. So thank you for that, and in case you're wondering--no, I am not being sarcastic.

You bring up a valid point about the culture of students. That is a real problem in our school and, I think, high schools across our nation. The average high school kid thinks cheating is not that big a deal. You know that I usually defend teachers and public schools, but I must admit that there's some areas where we're failing, and I think this is one of them. I've decided that I should try to do something about it, even if it's just in my little world.

8/13/2007 12:39 PM  
Blogger sailorman said...

It wasn't a "you" it was the global "you." And it really was a hypothetical! :) I can't say that I'd personally sue anyone, even in a situation like that.

FWIW, I fully support your plan. I'd be 100% behind it if my kids' schools implemented it schoolwide. Cheating sucks.

In terms of the parents, think of it like this: The bigger the effect, the more that you need an appeals system, reliable and accountable documentation, and most of all, equity. You might think of kids as being in your CLASS. Parents think of kids as being in their GRADE, or maybe their SCHOOL.

A parent whose kid gets caught by a universally-enforced-across-the-grade school policy, who has the opportunity to protest it, and who loses... they'll be pissed, but OK.

Take that same parent who knows that Bobby in the same school, and same grade, is doing the exact same thing without consequence? Oooooo. Don't go there.


My suggestion is a ramp up policy.

Year 1: Get all teachers on board with something. ANYTHING will do, even the wussy-ass "fail the quiz and have an opportunity to make it up on a Saturday." Just so long as 1) the administration has control over it; and 2) every teacher can agree on it.

Then, increase the policy yearly. Get teachers on board before the year ends. Don't hesitate to discipline, fine, or attempt to fire those who drop the ball.

Year 1: cheating = zero on quiz (with makeup available.) Start training teachers and students--freshmen, preferably--for appeals committee, documenting, etc etc. Start encouraging people to drop anonymous tips somehow. I'm not joking--NOBODY will testify openly, and the students know better than you who is cheating.

Year 2: zero on two "quiz grade equivalents", no makeup. Appeals committee now likely to get some actual cases, as two "real" exams can fail someone. Document--set precedent for decision!--and practice for all.

Year 3: Zero on three "grade equivalents." No makeup available. By this point, you should have eliminated cheating on all major tests; it's too 'expensive' to get zeros on three of them.* By now, you'll definitely be getting appeals. Good thing you have a system set up already and have ironed out the kinks....

Year 4: Any cheating on a proctored in-class exam or quiz is an automatic failure for the course. (You'll need your appeals committee for this one.) By this time, all entering freshmen will have a culture to learn, instead of an amalgam of different approaches.

There you have it, a four year plan. You can just "move up a year" for repeat offenders.

Note that I treated "traditional" cheating (in class tests) differently than out of class work. Part of this is because it's easiest to catch. The other part is that it's easiest to punish without people throwing a fit; all parents and politicians know that hiding the answers in your sleeve is bad, while 0.1% of the U.S. population really knows how to avoid plagiarism.

It's also much easier to assign blame accurately in those in-class situations. Be careful of convicting the innocent; it's a bad career move and also can literally destroy the academics of a top student.

I'm not joking about the appeals committee. Nor about written precedent.

And yes: you will have a few students who have no motivation to learn after they fail. That's OK. There won't be many of them. You can sort of split the difference by offering them some really boring partial-credit class during study hall. If they're the oft-mentioned "student who cares, who tries, and who just made the one screw up of their life" then they won't mind spending 17 weeks helping to classify diatoms to help their grades back up.

*There will ALWAYS be some students who will cheat no matter what the cost. nothing to be done, really, but bust them. Don't focus on changing the behavior of your most obdurate students. Instead, go for efficiency: focus on changing the most malleable ones first.

8/13/2007 2:07 PM  
Blogger Dennis Fermoyle said...

Holy Moley, Sailorman! I thought I'D given this a lot of thought!

8/13/2007 4:30 PM  
Blogger Mz.H said...

This discussion is absolutely brilliant! I love reading the perspectives and ideas...(and I confess to being very intrigued about the idea of filming testing sessions). The teaching theory I matriculated out of was of the avoid-traditional-testing-if-at-all-possible-and be-more-creative-in-your-assessments variety. So I started my teaching career all full of vim and vigor and creative assessments. And that only went so far.

I have slowly added in more and more quizzes and tests -- while I don't like the danger of short-term regurgitation (and fodder for cheating), there is that balance between the group work/project based curriculum and a kid being responsible for the content of the class. Thus, an increase in tests. And then there is more temptation to cheat.

I still try to require more writing assessment, but you can't get away from basic fact/content assessment. This conversation has really helped me focus on how I want to deal with this issue.

--Mz.H

8/14/2007 5:07 PM  
Blogger Dennis Fermoyle said...

"This conversation has really helped me focus on how I want to deal with this issue."

Me,too, Ms. H! Thanks for your comment, and I'm glad you enjoyed the dialogue!

8/14/2007 6:15 PM  
Blogger Jenny said...

As someone who is still a lowley college student (not even a student teacher!), I'm sure my comment is going to sound fairly juvenile, but as for cheating on low impact assignments such as a quiz or chapter summary, I feel there should be an intermediate stage between a zero on the assignment and an F for the quarter. Assignments valued at a tiny percentage of overall grades tend to be viewed as a waste of time, or at least never quite worth the effort, so cheating on them might seem less "real" than cheating on an exam or project, a lazy way of thinking that's dangerously easy to permanently internalize.

For a second offense, especially when you have just started to implement your program, it seems like docking a students grade for the quarter by either 10% or a full letter grade would be a sufficient attention grabber without removing the motivation to do any more work until the next grading period rolls around. I think that would plainly convey the seriousness with which cheating is considered contemptible without doing very permanent damage.

8/22/2007 1:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i can understand your frustration, however i dont believe u should do sucha thing. i myself am a student and have cheated today and i feel really guilty about it, thus im here online trying to learn how to deal with it. good students cheat for when theyre desperate. when they need to get a good grade and on certain cases the test or quizes are impossible to ace. bad kids cheat because they are lazy. id recommend that u treat those who often cheat harsher than the good kids who were forced by thier consciuse to do such an embarrassing act. the cheater would feel guilty and regret their actions and thus theyd learn to fight within themselves to choosed between right and wrong. furthermore, cheating is a sin and god will punish cheaters, so u should not worry about it. moreover, the schools are really tough on teens these days. we get a packed AP duel enrollment and honor classes during school and then spend all out time out of school studying and doing homework that sometimes we need to cheat. i personally get less than 6 hrs of sleep a night and about 3 hours a day for meals, showering, and relaxing. this can frustrate students and they sometimes need to be givin a break. so now that i have helped u. can u tell me what to do? should i confess to my teacher about cheating or just let it go. im pretty sure the teacher knows. i dont want to lose his trust, im actually a good student and i dont know y i acted so stupdily today.

1/31/2008 12:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Compare that to colleges. When you go to a college, there's an EXISTING structure of anti-cheating. There are EXISTING examples of people being expelled or punished; there is an existing culture that recognizes this.

Okay I have to boldly disagree with sailorman ... College students are the WORST about cheating despite policies and so called enforcement. I think cheating has become a socially acceptable behavior not only on the educational platform but all over. Speeding, taxes, wrong change just to name a few. I don't think that people have any problem with cheating and even students who have been caught (obviously) continue to do so if you're catching someone more than once per marking period!

6/04/2008 8:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

MY daughther is a high school student taking a college online course as a dual enrolled student. She was caught cheating on a homework assignment in the class. There is a way they can see where the file was generated from. So that is how she got caught. When we talked with her, she said she realized what she had done was wrong, but she just didnt think it was that big a deal, as it wasnt a test but just homework. WELL, she was immediately locked out of the class and sent a message that she may have violated a cheating rule. She tried for 3 weeks to get an appointment. After 3 weeks she was called into the school where she admitted that she did it and it was wrong. THis was her punishment. She was given a 0 for the whole class. SHe was tagged as a cheater and it was put in the file of the college. She now has a 0 on a whole semester grade that will drop her GPA dramatically. She had a GPA of 3.9 and was in several national honor societies. SHe has never once been in any troble...ever...in 12 school years. WEll that wasnt even all. THe high school said they had no power, they had to follow the colleges policy. Well the college said she could retake the class the next semester and replace the grade..at least it was an opportunity to bring up the grade. But here is the kicker...the principal of the high school refused to let her. So the grade will stick and her GPA will go down. This will also mess up scholarships and programs. She had taken the SAT 3 times in 3 months trying to get the scores up even 2 points each time..as she was trying to get into a program called the ribn program...which now she will basically problem not be able to get into because of the cheating catch on her transcript. SO I understand all of your views on cheating. But I think we need to educate the children on the ramifications of cheating...especially on an online course. THere was not verbal policy expressed to her...it was in the syllabus of the class, and she did sign it online, with all the other online material. That there was a no tolerance for cheating. I think that you should be doing everything you can ...at orientation, at the high school and through the forum of the class..to make sure the students really understand the policy. Knowledge is power..education is power....ruining someones college over cheating on a hw assignment is just unjust. I mean what are you trying to do? Teach them a lesson or ruin their lifes? I think if it is teach them a lesson, then a step approach would be warranted. HW cheat...0 on the HW and a verbal warning...then the second time I can see whatever the punishment. I am for at least a chance.

12/08/2014 5:51 PM  

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