Texas, Chicago universities see rise in cheating during remote learning

on Dec17
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Universities have recently been rocked by cheating scandals as remote learning during the coronavirus pandemic allows students more tools and access to circumvent the rules, according to reports.

In Texas A&M, students were found to answer questions faster than they could even read them on a finance exam. Faculty reported concerns of a “very large scale” to the Aggie Honor System Office.

University officials offered offending students the chance to self-report by end of business on Dec. 8, and those who didn’t but were found guilty could face expulsion, the Texas Tribune reported.

“If you engaged in this behavior, I would like to encourage you in the strongest way to reclaim your personal integrity,” Timothy Powers, director of the Aggie Honor System Office, said in the email to students.

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The problem of cheating has grown more severe in the year of remote learning and online assignments: the University of North Texas saw a 20% increase in cheating, and Texas State University saw an increase of one-third.

The University of Chicago also had to grapple with a cheating scandal recently when students in a computer science course accused of copying code from each other to complete assignments, according to Chicago Business.

“In all our years at the University of Chicago, we have never encountered cheating at this scale, and we are extremely disappointed to find that so many of you would choose to conduct yourselves so dishonorably,” instructors wrote in an email to students in the course.

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The college said in a statement that “all cases are being reviewed on an individual basis” and reminded students that “academic integrity is a fundamental value of the University of Chicago.”

In Canada, the University of British Columbia uncovered “over 100 cases of cheating” during a math midterm, CBC reported.

“I am extremely disappointed to tell you that there were over 100 cases of cheating,” the professor said in a note to students.

Access to Internet resources with slighter oversight has allowed students more space to be creative as to how they might handle difficult assignments and exams.

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In the case of the Texas A&M, students used homework website Chegg. The service offers textbook rentals and online tutoring, but critics argue that students abuse the site.

Chegg has said that it is trying to crack down on ways that students might abuse its service, though.

“Chegg is a learning platform used by millions of students in over 190 countries around the world to support their studies,” a spokesperson told Fox News. “We are deeply committed to academic integrity. The vast majority of students who use our platform are honest and here to learn.”

“We take any attempts to abuse our platform extremely seriously, and continually work to develop tools and products to enforce this — including making products available to institutions and faculty, as well as supporting their official honor code investigations.”​​

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However, Chegg has previously faced issues with students abusing its service: students at Boston University and Georgia Tech University had allegedly used the service in the spring to cheat in various science classes.

Fox News reached out to several universities for comment, which is pending. 



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