Creative Ways College Students Cheat in School

Apr 25, 2008

Academic cheating is nothing new. College students have been doing it for years to get by and to get the top grades that everyone seems to expect. But educators are catching on, and students are being forced to come up with new and more ingenious ways to cheat.

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Modern and Modernized Cheating Methods

1. Copying Homework

This schoolyard cheating method is a classic used by elementary school students and college students alike. The only difference is that college students can call the whole affair a 'study group' and get away with it at most schools.

2. Paying Someone Else to Write the Paper

Thanks to the Internet, it is easier than ever to find hundreds of pre-written academic papers and essays on nearly any topic imaginable. Most are available for instant download; some are free. Others are offered through services that can tailor a paper to a student's needs and deliver it within a 24 hour period.

3. Cheat Sheet

Cheat notes are another classic that many college students still use today. Of course, nowadays, the dates, important facts and equations are typically stored for later use in a PDA or on a calculator versus on a shoe or an arm. Nevertheless, the essential method is still the same.

4. Stealing the Test

A lot of teachers keep a copy of an upcoming test in an unlocked desk or in a file folder on their desk. Stealing the test outright will usually prompt the teacher to make a new test. Taking a picture of the test with a super tiny camera while nobody is looking will not--which is why some college students have resorted to snapping a photo and leaving the test 'uncompromised.'

5. The Bathroom Break

Taking a bathroom break in the middle of a test gives college students the perfect opportunity to get outside help. All a student has to do is call or text a friend that can look up all of the answers. When done properly, the entire transaction lasts just a few minutes and doesn't arouse any suspicions.

6. MP3 Playback

Music helps certain people focus, which is why some college professors allow students to listen to iPods and other MP3 players during tests and quizzes. This permissiveness is the perfect opportunity for students to playback pre-recorded lectures and verbal notes.

7. Cellular Cheating

Cell phones have become the number one tool of cheating college students. Everything from pictures to text can be stored in a cell phone. The little device can even be used to take a picture of the test. If the test-taking student sends the pic to an outside friend, the answers can be returned via text message in a matter of minutes.

8. Scan and Snack

The scan and snack method requires a great deal of planning and creativity, but it is frequently becoming a favorite of tech savvy college students. The basic premise involves peeling the wrapper off of candy or another snack food and then scanning it into a computer. The ingredients, nutrition facts and any other text in the scanned image are then edited into dates, facts and test answers. The food stuff is rewrapped and placed on a desk for easy viewing during the test.

A Cheating Disclaimer

We do not recommend that students use any of these methods to cheat. Although it is possible to cheat successfully, there is always a chance that you could get caught. Punishments you may face include, but are not limited to: scholarship loss, suspension, expulsion and utter humiliation.

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