11 Feb Define cheating please
Cheating, by definition, is to act dishonestly. It is deceiving someone to gain a reward. Sometimes people rationalize cheating by saying they are just beating “the system” but behind systems are people. So not matter what, even when you depersonalize your cheating by saying you are beating the system, you are ultimately cheating a person or people, including (always) yourself.
In school, cheating happens in various ways:
Cheating on tests or exams
Students bring notes to a test, use an electronic device to store or search for information, or even obtain copies of a test beforehand so that they know all the questions on a test. These are all forms of cheating. Also, anytime you look at another student’s exam/paper or help another student answer a question, you are cheating.
Cheating on papers
Students have found countless ways to cheat on essays and papers. Here are a few of the more common methods.
- Hundreds of papers on thousands of topics can be downloaded off the Internet. Taking any or all sentences from these papers without properly citing them is plagiarism.
- Some students sell their old papers to younger students or give them to friends.
- Parents get in on the act as well. Some parents “help” a little too much. Help with ideas and some grammar or typos is normal support from a parent. But when parents write entire paragraphs, let alone, entire papers, that is cheating.
Any time a person passes off work as his own that is not his own, it is called plagiarism which is, unfortunately, a common form of cheating. See the Bonus YSS for a complete review of plagiarism and how to avoid it.
Cheating on homework assignments or projects
Homework assignments can be confusing if a teacher is not specific about how the work is expected to be accomplished. When an assignment is explicitly a “group project,” working together is not cheating. However, when an assignment is individual, you are expected to do the work on your own.
For example, students will often section off their homework: “You do section A, I’ll do section B, and then we can exchange and copy each other’s work.” Copying your friend’s work or asking for the answer without doing the work is cheating.
In general, working together is not cheating UNTIL you start relying on the other person to do the work. Sharing ideas and collaborating are essential skills in today’s world and working together on an assignment can be more enjoyable and efficient than isolating yourself in your room. You are responsible though for answering the questions in your own words and/or showing your own work.
Always check in with your teacher if you are unsure about how much you can collaborate on an assignment. When the assignment is given, ask if you can work in teams and what the parameters (guidelines) are.