Isn't this sort of cheating?

Discussion in 'Diamond Lil's' started by slim, Feb 25, 2007.

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  1. Recently while looking at the forums I noticed an advert at the top of the page. The subject in the forum I was reading was to do with education. The advert was also to do with education. For £1000 they will write you an essay or dissertation. Now with all these people saying that they have degrees how many have used these services. The advert reckons they do 1000 a year, and thats ony one company.

    What do you guys think?
  2. Yes it's cheating. However the quality of these essays is often dubious to say the least and students can be disqualified if their personal prose style differs from the style they present as their own work which they've paid for someone else to do. Pre-written essays also lack that originality which makes the difference between a student getting a Distinction (a "First") and a lower Second.
  3. Yes it's cheating, AAC makes an important point about the style but you can also find that the essay you get is taken from a bank of material and tweaked, more tailored off the shelf than bespoke. If you get one of those then there are software packages which can spot that and most universities use those packages.
  4. Yes doltish students also use Wiki for research,cut and paste whole sections from dubious websites with little peer review or authority and continue to cite chapter and verse from texts as well rather than do some research of their own.
    Tertiery institutions, Unis and Polys are now using computer programs which scan the submitted essays etc for plagiarised material.
  5. When I was studying at Birkbeck in 96 I was horrified on visiting a fellow student to find that she got her essays re-written by someone else. She was in her 40s and very wealthy (lived near Harrods) and I probably shouldn't say any more than that about her identity. She was a journalist in her own language but didn't speak very good English. She dropped out of the course to the best of my knowledge because her husband objected to the amount of time she was devoting to her studies. She was a lovely woman but I think she picked up my disapproval, anyway I wasn't invited again.

    I think lecturers are very capable of spotting who might have had some help with essays. Some lecturers required students to collect essays in person to get proper feedback but not all, and increases in class sizes has probably made this increasingly unlikely.

    In one of my University jobs I had to deal with an enquiry from a student on a distance course who was out in the Far East. Language issues made it extremely difficult and I was very unhappy about the reply I finally sent.

    In other jobs I've noticed that students are increasingly unable to understand the essay questions they are set and can be quite unpleasant to library staff when asked very basic questions about the subject. I always encourage students to go back to lecturers and clarify any points they don't understand but this seems increasingly difficult as lecturers can be hard to contact.

    As a Librarian I'm often horrified by the quality of the reading lists that lecturers give to students and usually point this out to students during training. There are (as I'm sure you know) strict rules for listing materials so that the person running their eye down a list can - with a little training - quickly tell the differences between an item that is a complete book from that which is just a chapter from a book and that which is an article from a journal. In the 13 taught courses I took for a BA and MA as a mature student I only found one reading list out of that 13 which didn't have a single error in the reading list. (A female history Professor from Birkbeck).

    All part of the dumbing down of education I suppose.
  6. These essay services are pretty poor, a friend of mine used one a few years ago against all advice and they are slick operators. They make the subject matter as loosely related as they can and deliver poor results, the article in question failed.
    However, I admit to submitting half a dozen items of course work for an MBA programme in the UK to assist a struggling friend and passed them all, I also completed and passed the whole thesis, all this from someone who left school at 15 and never even went to college or did any further education other than military training. Cheating? Yes it was on the part of my friend, for me, I don't care because a friend in need is not to be ignored.
    Was it plagarism? Well, I didn't copy and paste anything, that is stupid and asking to get caught. I just got loads of books and references on the subjects, made my conclusions and re wrote them in my own style. In the "academic" world, a lot of what people submit on these masters courses are established business and management practices and not breakthrough discoveries, so it's all a kind of plagarism anyway.
    My dissertation on TQM is still in the library at a UK university and I am sure that any student using it as a source will benefit, despite the fact that a matelot did it.
    I have no guilt because I was helping someone out, what I wrote was true and my views of the degree system as a qualification for employment is a waste of time and money.
  7. Well Lingy after all your hard work you should get some form of recognition. Your mate is now an MBA perhaps you dhould put these letters after your name ie
    LingyMBA(Don) Not Doncaster but DONATED :smile:
  8. I often think about it Slim, but I need those letters after my name like I need an extra spud.
    Anyway, there's a twisted satisfaction in sticking it to the establishment. My management submissions were marked as quite radical but effective by the profs', most of whom had never been out of full time education, let alone in a managerial position.
    What a feed.
  9. Speaking as a college student at the moment, almost everyone of the younger members of my course use ether an essay writing website ( lots of free ones ) and or blantant copying from website and books.

    Copy and paste a whole web page then go though it adding or deleting words and/or whole sentences to make it look like their own work. SOme get away with it others don't.

    I've only ever cheated once, I was snowed under and had a friend who really enjoyed writing short stories something that doesn't intrest me in the slightest ( prefer science to english) . It only got a reasonable mark and she was most annoyed!

  10. I have had my suspicions about the value of modern degrees and other qualifications for a number of years now. When I did my HNC at the ripe old age of 47 in 1992 a percentage of the marks were obtained from coursework & homework and the rest from examinations. At that time the Internet was in its infancy and certainly not much use for essays etcetera. Now many of the courses seem to have no examinations and rely on coursework and homework entirely. Result lots of degree holders who know how to use the Internet to find information, cut and paste this then change a few words around.
    Think I'll sign up for Brain surgery on Tuesday, should have my degree in a few weeks.
  11. Cmon guys and dolls, what about those qualifying course, did anyone not cheat a little bit? And did you ever see a really innovative form of cheating?
  12. the funniest cheating I heard of took place at Birkbeck. An absolute tosser on my course cheated by writing cribs on his hand - un/fortunately the moron then put that hand up to request more paper and was marched out of the exam. A few of us wrote a letter complaining when he wasn't kicked out since we felt that this was condoning cheating. I think the Dept. felt that what he wrote wasn't that much use to him anyway but on that basis why not let all students go in with a list of dates? There was a funny story about his English being so poor he mistakenly confused two similar sounding things in history. Long time ago so I can't rememeber the detail - I'll check with my mate Claudia and see if she remembers. Lots of water under the bridge that's my excuse for forgetting ... :roll:
  13. [​IMG]

    At school, you could always guarantee some kind soul had inscribed some nugget of information into the wooden desk.
  14. Yes but the information was never relevent to the exam I was sitting :cry:
  15. Didn't you ever sit an exam on blowjobs, then?
  16. GR... cheating at Birkbeck!!! :shock: Nooooooooo! :evil:

    On the reading lists front, those at the School of Law were always OK. ON the students front I know the feeling.... I remember how Research Assistents used to pass-off Library Staff work as their own.... and not just Researchers! I've also have my own work plagurised - in one case a student from Queen Mary's College actually emailed me and asked me to send me the paper in Word format so she could 'copy it for [her] essay which [had] to be in by Monday'. That was the Friday. She admitted to me that she had done no work on the topic whatsoever, when I pointed out the point of essays were to teach her to carry out research on her own, show initiative and test her ability! A nurse published my paper as her work in the Nursing Standard until I pointed out plagurism, as did someone else last year. I could kill the bastards!!! :evil: :mad:
  17. Of course not Snappers. I was too busy marking them for the girls O level courses.
  18. Where can you sit such an exam? Is it just theoretical or is there a three hour practical exam as well! :razz: Brighton College perhaps? Oi Ken... are you interested? :wink: :lol:
  19. I dont think its written steve. Purely Oral :lol:
  20. Oh you pair!

    Anyway, this begs the question: How does one pass an oral, er oral exam? Technique? Enjoyability?

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