Opinion: changing the cheating mindset

Students have used many methods of cheating including technology and unwarranted notes.

Eilidh McGarva

Students have used many methods of cheating including technology and unwarranted notes.

Kennedy Williams, WTV Staff Reporter

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I get it, cheating in school is bad.

By high school, students surely recognize the controversy of cheating in school. It’s unfair to the teachers who observe lazy students that don’t have the courtesy to prepare for quizzes and tests themselves. It’s also harmful for others student as someone who didn’t study cheats their way to a better grade.

Students and teachers also seem to understand by now that cheating comes in many different forms. Whether it be the traditional ‘looking over at a peer’s test’ or more contemporary forms of ‘cheating’ such as finding answer keys for worksheets online or creating Quizlets, students have definitely become efficient in the realm of cheating as technology becomes more readily available. Obviously, new steps need to be taken to ensure that students don’t receive unfair advantages in school.

Teachers are definitely justified in minimizing the amount of cheating that occurs in their classes and at this point in my academic career, I’ve experienced every single approach to cheating prevention that I can think of. Separating desks, privacy folders, having all of my things confiscated or brought to the front of the room, the list goes on.

These acts of protocol work to an extent, but teachers should instead try to get students out of the mindset to cheat for a good grade. Teachers need to first consider why students feel the need to cheat. Yes, sometimes students just don’t prepare like they should. However, Assessments are sometimes formatted completely differently than the learning content that came before it.

Students at this campus are facing academic competition to such a high extent that stress can become inevitable. Students often think, “I’m clearly not as smart as some of these other people–how can I expect to get good grades and please my parents without cheating?” There’s a reason students try to cheat secretly. We have consciences and they fume at moments like these.

To help alleviate cheating, teachers could change their approach by communicating the consequences and alternatives, and prevention strategies for cheating. There are test-taking strategies that can be used when a student isn’t confident about a question. Teachers can also show students how to properly prepare for assessments.

School is not about getting the best grades, but instead it’s about creating a future that best represents the potential of each student.