Geniuses or cheaters?

by cclar6 on September 16, 2013 - 10:52pm

In today’s society, it seems that the principle of education has lost its value. Students are more concerned about the grade they receive on an assignment rather than the knowledge they retain in the process.

While it is true that the fundamental purpose of school is to get a good education, there is more than one way to go about it. As a student, I know firsthand that getting an “A” is the main goal that my peers and I are aiming toward. However, with all of distractions of technology and social media, it can be easy to get lost in a sea of procrastination. When it comes time to take a test, we can feel overwhelmed and unprepared, causing us to take as drastic of measures as cheating, just as the students from Stuyvesant High School were caught doing.

“But the scandal is not that today’s young people lack a moral compass. Rather, it’s that we’ve imposed upon our brightest teenagers a system that drives them crazy and impels them to act contrary to their nature,” (Bukiet, 2012.)  I agree completely that pressure from school pushes students to their breaking points. When teachers pile on the homework and tests, students panic and have trouble managing their time. I believe that cheating is a result of students being stressed out and just trying to cram the information into their brains. Instead of taking the time to learn and absorb the material, they learn it shallowly, just so they can regurgitate it onto a test paper for a grade. It is this problem that drives kids to do dishonest things that I think they otherwise wouldn’t do.


Bukiet, M. (2012, July). Why Smart Kids Cheat.

New York Daily News


I think that is a very interesting topic. As a student, I understand the pressure that comes along with doing well in school. There is pressure from not only our friends and family but also from our peers and faculty to be successful when pursing higher education. Some times it seems as though teachers get together and plan to have every big assignment and test due at the same time in order to make out lives miserable. As students we try to cope with this in the best way possible. This often results in one trying to study everything the night before the test. They cram in as much knowledge as possible for that one test and then forget everything they memorized the minute their test is over. I also agree with the fact that this pressure leads the students to cheat in order to do better in school. I think that if students would be less pressured to do well by society, this could significantly decrease the amount of cheating students do at school. Overall, I agree with what you are saying and think that the student have forgotten the reason why they are in school in the first place, which is to learn.

I believe this a very good post. I think it is extremely relate-able because I think all students have come in contact with cheating at some point in their educational career. Cheating has become a widespread epidemic and I feel it is the reason most students simply “forget” what they were taught the year before. I agree that students are taking a more shallow approach to learning in this day and age and in result they aren’t actually learning anything just memorizing for a short period of time. I think incorporating why cheating is becoming more widespread would make this an even better article. I believe it’s becoming more widespread because students don’t feel they actually need to learn what they are being taught, a common phrase students use is “I’m never going to use this in life” I think this is why students take a shallow approach to learning.

Your argument is pretty clear and well written. You are right when you say that most of students rush with managing their time and sometime it leads to cheating. Cégep or even University is not a easy ! The main goal when students wake-up every morning is to study and get their diploma at the end of the process !

Although I don’t believe that cheating is a way from students to say they are overloaded. I think it is the easy way out. I strongly think that if you manage your time properly, the educational system is well organized for you to succeed all your classes. Of course, external problem can occur like death or a divorce and then it become harder to manage time but then again, I think that the honest student will try to learn as much and try his/her best on the test.

Personally, I have never cheated in an exam and I haven’t passed them all. The goal to education is to learn, not to stock information for a test and use it again after therefore if you aren’t able to study in the entire book for your test, the mark you will get is related to the amount of time you spent studying !

As a CEGEP student, I can relate to this article very well. I found that in High School, one of the tactics they used to get us to focus on our studies was the perpetual threat that if we didn't get good grades, we wouldn't get into CEGEP, and that would mean we wouldn't get a good job. I'm not sure this tactic really worked, because CEGEPs only looked at the grades from our first term, and they accepted or rejected us based on those grades. So, we worked hard for the first term, but slacked off afterwards because it seemed like the grades we would get afterwards didn't matter. With the increase of technological advances in our society, and the internet as means of communication, cheating is easier than ever. Countless blogs and articles on how to cheat on an exam can be easily reached through a simple google search. This leads me to believe that a massive reform should be made in the educations sector, not only on how we teach and what we teach, but also how we motivate students to learn.

This is a very interesting topic and a great post. Mostly everyone reading this can relate perfectly to this issue on cheating in school. Throughout my middle school and high school years at one point or another everyone has seen or experienced this topic. Teachers want us to gain all the knowledge they were taught and share it with so they feel as if it is necessary to give us projects, readings, homework assignments and tests. But is this really helping us? Or are we just doing everything in our power to get an A. This topic is not only great for students to recognize but for professors and school districts. Teachers can tell us if they catch us cheating there will be severe punishments, which is a good course of action, but students will only get smarter in figuring out different ways to. Especially since technology is becoming so powerful now. I can really relate to this subject because I am a nursing intent at college and in order to get into the nursing program after two years of schooling you have to apply, and maintain a GPA of 3.5 which can be extremely hard with all the outside factors affecting our lives. Although I do not believe in cheating and know that will get me nowhere in life; I agree that with all the pressures from parents, teachers, coaches, and family it can be temping. Great job on this post and I would love to learn more a about the more widespread epidemic!

As my article was about education too, I found yours very interesting. As student, we all relate very much to your article and I think that it is important to understand it well because it is a good way to knowledge. The main goal of school actually should not be to always be the one with the best grades but the one making the most effort and learning out of the effort put in the work. This is the moment when we really learn. If you copy and you've succed all your courses, one day you will face something that could not be copied on your classe mate. But you are right to say that copying seems to be the result of an accumulation.

I honestly thought this was a well written article and I believe the title is well-suited. I chose this article to write about because I think everyone at one point, including myself, has had the urge to cheat whether this means copying someone’s homework just to make sure yours is done to getting answers to a test just so you don’t fail. Grades have become a big deal especially in the nursing field or any medical field. I know for me personally in order to even be considered into the nursing program I would have to have a GPA ranging from 3.6-4.0 with a 3.6 being the bare minimum. They no longer look at whether you would make a great nurse due to personality they look at how smart you are. Logically, I would not want someone taking care of me that could not pass any of their classes in college but at the same time if they are smart and are not people oriented than I would request a new nurse. I do agree with you on the fact that we morally know it is wrong but all people really want is an A on any assignment. Overall, I agree with you. Kids need to focus on learning and to not heavily focus on grades. The more you put into studying, the more you learn, and your grades will follow.

Your post was really interesting. It was a smart topic to choose as the student base on this website can really relate to it. I agree that in our current educational system the grades we receive seem to outweigh the importance of learning the material for our own benefit. As students, we're used to studying long hours before exams only to forget all of the information right after. This can also lead to cheating as the ends seem to justify the means in our current competitive system where students are basically pitted one against the other to see who can receive the best mark and get that spot in university. It just seems like we have no other options but to resort to cheating in those moments of need. It also seems to tie in with the increase in the use of social media where self-esteem is constantly bashed by other peoples success as they post it on their wall. All of this to say that the situation we are in funnels us to the breaking-point where we aren't cheating for morally unjust reasons but simply for self-preservation in a highly competitive world. Do you think that this substantiates cheating and the consequences should be less severe? Or do we have to change the entire system to make cheating less of the "go-to" option?

You have a very valid point. Kids in school these days don't realize the value of education, and how important it is to do well in school. Cheating the system in high school will only harm student's later on in life. They won't learn the right way to study or take test, or even do homework correctly. And for the most part you touch on all of those points. It is sad that kids have gone this low in our education system just to "get ahead" and make them selves seem smarter. You wrote this article very well and make your point extremely clear. Job well done!

I like your article because it’s very relatable. Students may study and retain as much information as they can but if it isn’t useful in their everyday lives then they are going to completely erase it from their memory once they take the exam. This makes me wonder when people get good grades if they are truly educated long term. I think they may have just been storing that information in their short-term memory. Procrastination is a huge issue today; I am the queen of procrastination. This isn’t good because you cram for an exam and create a huge amount of unwanted stress and it takes a negative toll on you. Fixing this procrastination problem is a lot harder than it seems. Students can easily do small amounts of work each day and avoid the piling up of work but we convince ourselves we will do it tomorrow or the next day and so on. It’s a never ending cycle.

As a student, I completely feel and understand the pressure that comes with the educational environment. Personally, I believe that we’re all victims of this system, of this “culture of results” put in place by our societies and governments. However, I absolutely do not excuse nor advocate the recourse to cheating. There are, as many already pointed in comments before, other ways of succeeding: working harder and harder, obviously, but also better time management, specialized resources (such as tutoring or private teachers), etc.

For sure, the ultimate goal of a student’s academic education is to learn and master the most (relevant) material possible, in order to succeed well in his exams. That’s a universal and undeniable principle which I totally agree with.

We have in Quebec what we call the “R Score”, which I believe – correct me if I’m wrong –, has the same purpose than the GPA. Universities use it for their admissions. It basically gives you a rating based on your marks compared with the average; the more ahead of the average you are, the higher your score. And that’s where it becomes a problem to me… I would even say, in all respect, that this mathematical thinking is ridiculous. There’s so much more to true education – not only to the academic way of seeing it – than a simple number!

Real life is not only about school books. Fortunately, it seems (at least, to me) that there are teachers and institutions that actually try – sometimes unconsciously – to teach us more than only facts, numbers, and historical concepts; I’ve had a lot of teachers who really wanted to transmit us their values and vision of the world.

It’s up to us to catch the ball when it passes by…

It is true that nowadays, we go to school for grades. More people go to university, so it is harder to stand out from the crowd. We want good grades for the following step, but we don’t take the time to live in the present time and enjoy the all possible knowledge we could accumulate around us. With all the new electronic devices, we loose a lot of time and when it comes to studying, we try to make it as fast as possible. We don’t take the time that’s necessary to understand the information and we just learn it by heart for the test. Later, when we concretely learn about our future job, we will have to be more attentive because this knowledge will directly affect our working skills. Even if you had the best grades during your university studies, you will not be able to do a great job if you don’t remember what you learned during your courses.

Being a student, the cheating subject comes up very often. We all know we shouldn't be doing it but the pressure to achieve in school, whether it's to please parents or getting a good job is bigger than if it's morally right or wrong. I've seen it happen so many times and sometimes the pressure can get so intense it may only be the way. I agree with this post because the pressure to be the best in your class to get the best job is more important the fact of the action being right or wrong. I agree with the points in the article because school can get very stressful for students and the only way to get through is to sometimes take the easier route. Yes, I agree that the principle of education is lost but also the fact of values and ethics is losing this battle as well. People often do not see that cheating does not benefit in the end. Yes, maybe they will get a better mark but in the long run it doesn't prove the actual potential of a person. It is very dishonest to themselves and others to be cheating but then again, this goes back to the survival instinct that we all carry as humans. The strongest, smartest and fastest are the ones that survive so sometimes you got to cut some corners to rise to the top. The article below describes exactly how students (even Harvard students) cheat their way up.

It's so true that students don't really study to learn information anymore but to simply memorize and retell. What I believe is the problem is not at all that the students have began using these "tactics". Honestly it shows that they have found a way to get high marks consistently, the problem lies within the school system and that it is almost tailored to work hand in hand with this kind of studying. Students are just finding the easiest or most reliable way to get good grades, where as the school system isn't changing to a more in depth and understanding focused approach to the subjects.

In today’s world, there is a huge emphasis put on grades that students receive. Being a student myself, I understand the pressures that especially a teenager in high school is put under to do well. We are taught that we need to do well in school in order to get into the university of our choice and therefore have a bright future, however we are not always fortunate enough to be taught that there is so much more that goes into preparing ourselves for the future. Extra-curricular activities can sometimes be more important than marks, as they can teach many things such as teamwork and commitment, the social aspect is a bonus and universities also look at the extra-curricular activities that are going to differentiate one student from the other. I have grown up with my mom always stressing the importance of reading the comments on a report card rather than going straight to the marks, because the comments provide both positive and negative criticism which is important in helping a student grow as a person and as a learner. In regards to cheating, I completely agree that it is stress related. The point of cheating is because the student is nervous they will forget a piece of information for a certain test or assignment, and in order to do well they feel as if this is the only option. Although cheating should never be condoned, it is inevitable with the stress that is being put on teens especially to be successful throughout their high school career. I believe that the only solution to this problem is to switch gears and to start stressing the importance of taking in everything that you are learning rather than worrying about how you are going to remember it for the on-coming test. I believe it is time to get outside and explore your interests, develop new skills, and only then with teens in high school really be able to take in how privileged we are to be where we are.

I found the topic you chose for this piece is very interesting. Being a fellow college student, I understand the pressure that is placed on you as a student to be the best that you can be. The education system forces you to compete with other students to portray the best academic grades you can achieve. Students tend to cheat on exams because of the overall pressures they have to perform and keep their grades up. When I was in high school, during my grade 10 year, there was a grade 11 student who wrote her public speech on the pressures of education. Her speech went on to winning the gold medal in the national public speaking contest. Her speech allowed for us to see the pressure students have to go through to have a higher final grade them our classmates.

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