"I will not copy...": an increase in dishonest academic practices
As well as the old tricks, new technologies are also proving tempting for cheats.
From El Pais, a Spanish daily newspaper, a description of one of the oldest universally shared experiences: copying at school!
I hereby not to use fraudulent means to obtain my degree at the Public University of Navarre.” All the students at this higher education center will now have to sign this statement of academic honesty at the time of enrolment. This initiative, which is very common at North American universities and was already being contemplated by other Spanish campuses like Cantabria, is part of what Jaume Sureda and his research team call prevention measures against dishonest academic practices. They mean cheating. For those who persist there are detection measures and penalizations.
“Trends suggest that this type of behavior is on the rise,” says Sureda, a professor at the University of the Balearic Islands. His most recent study found that 45 percent of university students admit to having copied someone else’s work during written examinations, and over 60 percent have in some form of academic in their papers.
Making matters more complicated is the fact that the good old-fashioned cheat sheets have become much more sophisticated with the advent of new technologies and the copy-paste option. And so the teacher’s old surveillance system based on watchful walks up and down the has also gotten an upgrade. In recent years, many university schools have been testing frequency inhibitors during exams to prevent students from seeking answers through their cellphones or other mobile devices.
The School of Medicine and Dentistry at Valencia University tried out these during the last academic year after some students complained about classmates using cellphones and earbuds to get help with their tests.
to dabble (v) to undertake something superficially or without serious intent
plagiarism (n) the process of taking another person’s work, ideas, or words as if they were your own
aisle (n) a passageway between rows of seats, as in an auditorium or an airplane
inhibitor (n) one that inhibit, a substance that slows or stops a chemical reaction
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