Cheating in school is a problem every educational institution is facing. Students have various ways and strategies to cheat, especially in the age of technology where answers are readily available for them in just a few taps.
School policies on cheating and punishments for committing such offense are clearly laid out to students. Teachers and examination proctors also remind students to avoid cheating. While students are aware that dishonesty with their schoolwork and exams is bad, they still choose to engage with it.
Why do they still do it anyway? Here are some of the reasons.
1. They don’t want to fail
It is common for students to feel pressured to get good grades, or at least not fail the test. However, this might not give them enough push to study harder. Too often, students cheat when they are not prepared for the test. This may be brought about students’ demotivation to study, preoccupation with other activities such as playing video games or binge-watching TV series, or difficulty in understanding the lessons.
2. Others are doing it so it must be fine
As bad as it may sound, cheating in school became so rampant that it actually feels normal for students to cheat. If most students are doing it, students will be more inclined to follow them, even if they are fully aware that cheating is, in all ways, wrong.
3. They still haven’t thought of its outcomes
Since it feels “normal,” students would not get too scared to do it. YOLO (you only live once) attitude may also drive them to cheat. Younger people are more prone to mischievous behaviors because they tend to do things without thinking of the outcome of what they’re going to do. They’re more comfortable to cheat because they still haven’t thought of its consequences.
There may be a lot more reasons why students cheat. But whatever their reason is, cheating should not be tolerated as it is detrimental to learning and the reputation of the academe.
As a teacher, you play a big role in putting an end to this pressing issue. As the saying goes, “prevention is better than cure,” so take necessary measures to prevent this from happening.
Before handing out test papers, discuss the consequences of cheating with your students. Sanctions may be in the form of deductions from the total score or other disciplinary actions. Through this, students will be discouraged to cheat knowing that there is an immediate penalty for committing this offense.
If students still continue to cheat, teachers and exam proctors are the first ones to notice. When this happens, avoid reprimanding the student the moment you saw him or her cheat. This may prevent creating commotion that would allow more students to cheat.
After the test, talk to the student without telling him directly that you saw him or her cheat. You can ask him or her some questions about the test to eventually lead him or her to admit his mistake. When he or she tells you the truth, discuss the consequences of cheating. Then, talk to the prefect of discipline about the case before talking to the student’s parents.
The school, as a training ground for students, should be able to mold them to be conscientious individuals with high regard to laws, and should be an institution where cheating is not tolerated and felonious and unethical acts are not fostered.