Student Cheated on My Final

Discussion in 'General Education' started by StudentTeach, Jun 20, 2011.

  1. StudentTeach

    StudentTeach Comrade

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    My senior English class had three essays as part of a district wide final assessment. The first essay for this one person was okay but not great, the second was fabulous and the third was only one paragraph. The second sounded WAY too advanced for this one person so I googled some phrases and found the entire essay online! This is something they did in class and did not have the story ahead of time, so she MUST have used a phone or other kind of internet device to cheat during the exam :dizzy:

    I had to write a referral for this person and graduation is on Friday.... whyyyyy!
     
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  3. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Wow! She really really thought she needed help to pass.
     
  4. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Who was proctoring? How could she download an entire essay without anyone noticing?
     
  5. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    That's what I would want to know.
     
  6. LUCHopefulTeach

    LUCHopefulTeach Habitué

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    +3

    Obviously, she is in the wrong for cheating. However, there is another issue here as well about monitoring students during exams...
     
  7. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    To be honest, if she could get away with it, I would be pretty suspicious of the other exams. Maybe spend the time googling a key phrase or two from each kid.

    If several kids DID cheat, you've got to catch them or risk having exams become a huge joke.
     
  8. StudentTeach

    StudentTeach Comrade

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    I'm embarrassed to say I was in the room -- however, teachers who have seniors are required to submit final grades at the end of each test day in order to tell seniors as early as possible if they are not graduating. Our administrator made explicit instructions that we are to be grading the previous class exams during our current exam in order to meet this deadline. Every 20 minutes or so I would get up and walk around but this one person is the last seat in the last row and it would be impossible for me to see her on her phone from my desk. The essay is about a page and could probably have been copied in 15 minutes or less. Don't worry, I already felt the pang of guilt when I realized what happened but my department chair assured me that I shouldn't feel guilty for something the student clearly did wrong. I've gone through the other exams and it doesn't appear anyone else has followed suit. He said she is the first case in 8 years they've heard of doing this.
     
  9. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    So school policy is that there's no one actively proctoring?? What idiocy. You can't proctor and grade at the same time. If this is the first kid to cheat in 8 years, with no one proctoring, then either your kids are angels or they've been getting away with it.
     
  10. StudentTeach

    StudentTeach Comrade

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    My thoughts exactly...
    We have two hours from 12-2 to grade after the kids leave (they have two two hour exams each day) but that is hardly enough time to grade 90 essays. Hence, they tell us to grade while students are testing. Maybe they will change this policy when they realize teachers can't be in two mindsets at once.
     
  11. Brendan

    Brendan Fanatic

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    Unfortunately, not many teachers actively proctor exams and tests like Alice said. At my school as well teachers seem to grade while students are taking exams. I personally do not. I walk up and down the rows for the whole test. If I am sitting it is not in my chair, but on a desk or table.
     
  12. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Migod, there is no reason they cannot shell out a few extra dollars to have substitutes come in and cover proctoring. When I subbed, I would have gleefully taken some year-end work. This is shoddy planning.
     
  13. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    WOW!

    In my building, proctoring means standing (or leaning) and doing nothing but watching the kids. No grading, no computer work, no IPOD, nothing but watching the kids take an exam.
     
  14. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    Standing/sitting on a table with clipboard in hand. Usually on that clipboard is something that I can grade. We are told not to, but those are boring long days and need something to pass the time. I still watch the kids well and they really don't have a means to cheat other than looking at someone elses paper and I have never caught that during the big tests.
    My own tests that I give I have caught students cheating, but that is also handled differently.
     
  15. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    True Story (shocked myself when I heard it): My cousin who graduated high school just two years ago told me how severely he and other students he knew cheated on our state exams. There was a teacher who would get the students started testing and then go into his office (the science labs at the school have seperate offices for teachers) and work on his computer while the students took the exam. My cousin told me that they sat at tables and exchanged answers with one another. They just asked each other which answers they thought they had right and who got questions x correct. My cousin also told the that he did not think he would have passed the math portion of the test if he had not cheated that day.
    After being completely shocked and displeased with him that he would day that, I was somewhat happy for that school. I am not a fan of the state tests and am happy that the school will most likely (unless that was the only room that happened in) have a good boost in their scores. Right or wrong, its one way of saying screw the test to the state.
     
  16. Teaching Grace

    Teaching Grace Connoisseur

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    For the CRCT, we all have to proctor our own students plus we have someone else in there with us. This year I had a Kindergarten para in there so help out. We walked and walked and walked the entire 3 1/2 hours.... of the testing. It was horrible.... Our administrators even came by our rooms to see if we were circulating. If we weren't, they would twist their finger in the air to show us that we should be up and going around. People from the county even came around to each school periodically during testing to make sure we were all at attention.
     
  17. MrsLilHen

    MrsLilHen Comrade

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    I was just reading an Alfie Kohn article about cheating. The part that struck me was:

    “...when students perceive that the ultimate goal of learning is to get good grades, they are more likely to see cheating as an acceptable, justifiable behavior...”

    I think that the climate of school in general these days - grades, and testing and achievement is really creating a bad situation.

    Full article: http://www.alfiekohn.org/teaching/cheating.htm
     
  18. MrsLilHen

    MrsLilHen Comrade

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    Oh - and I totally agree --- don't feel guilty for something that your student did wrong!
     
  19. Chrissteeena

    Chrissteeena Companion

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    When I was in H.S., during finals week(s) [midterms as well], they only let us come in the main door. They had a table set up with the two hall monitors and two security guards. We were advised to bring NOTHING other than ourselves, pens and pencils and if it were a math exam a calculator. If we had bags we were to leave them on the floor with the security guards until the test was over. People stopped bringing bags with them after certain items were stolen out of them.
     
  20. LUCHopefulTeach

    LUCHopefulTeach Habitué

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    I think that in high school for midterms and exams the teachers should be allowed to collect the phones and electronic devices and keep them on their desk during the exam. This would decrease, if not eliminate, cheating on exams.
     
  21. Ms. I

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    That's a shame that that student cheated. If I were you, in the future on final exam day, I'd out of the blue have the kids who normally have been siting in the front 1/2 of the room sit in the back 1/2 of the rm & the back 1/2 move up to the front 1/2 of the rm. That way, they're all caught off guard & the ones who normally sit in the back who may have prepared to cheat will be too scared to tk a chance (since they'll now be up front). The others who normally sit in the front probably wouldn't have planned to cheat so they won't be prepared to do so once it's exam day.
     
  22. Ms. I

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    I totally agree. Hey, when us adults are taking all the exams for the CSET, RICA, PRAXIS, etc., they not only have us bring our phones to the front, but mk sure our plastic water bottles don't have the paper labels on anymore. At least that's what they did in my area when I took all my exams.
     
  23. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    I know things are different depending on ages, but at the start of everyday I collect all phones from my students now. I did not use to do this, but started it this past year. Every morning students who bring phones put them on my desk (I put them into the desk). At the end of the day I take them out and they come collect them. I know which students usually do and do not bring phones so if there is a change one day it is easy to question it. The students did not like it at first, but once they got used to it, it just became part of their routine.
     
  24. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    Thats a little extreme with the water bottles don't you think?
     
  25. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    I didn't say they SHOULD necessarily do it in the high schools. I'm just saying what they mk us adults do.

    But, maybe it is worth doing because kids will think that us teachers/proctors are so concerned about the latest technology to cheat that the kids may think that teachers will never think of the 'old water bottle label trick!
     
  26. LUCHopefulTeach

    LUCHopefulTeach Habitué

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    When I student taught in 5th, we did the same thing.

    They made us take the labels off as well when I took my APT and found several labels that had been removed, answers/definitions/information written on, and then re-attached to the bottle!
     
  27. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    I meant excessive to do that with the adults. If people are going to go through that much trouble for a definition or two, I'm not so concerned. In the end when we are in the real job we are able to look the information up, and usually need to anyway.
     
  28. yarnwoman

    yarnwoman Cohort

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    When I took my CSET, we also could not have baseball caps as they had discovered people writing answers on the brim. :dizzy:
     
  29. msmullenjr

    msmullenjr Devotee

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    W aren't allowed to take cell phones from students. I guess at another school a teacher confiscated a cell phone for some reason and parents claimed that inappropriate things were not downloaded by the student so the teacher must have done it. No one believed the parent, but I guess it was quite the headache to clear it up. If there is ever an issue with a student's cell phone, we are supposed to make them keep it in clear view until the Principal comes down to take it from them.
     
  30. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    Personally, I think a teacher has the right to take anything from a student if it is a distraction in the classroom.
     
  31. Emily Bronte

    Emily Bronte Groupie

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    I also collect cellphones.
     
  32. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    StudentTeach, any idea what the consequences will be for this student?
     
  33. StudentTeach

    StudentTeach Comrade

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    I'm giving her a 0 for the exam and I suspect that will be it... she graduates on Friday so it's not like she can do a Saturday detention or anything! A 0% brings her grade down by 10% which is pretty significant.
     
  34. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    The cheating that bugged me the most was early period students telling last period students the questions. Since we had mandatory common exams, there was nothing I could do about it except stew over the big grade jump by last period.


    I have a disability and can't proctor effectively in a crowded room, but I don't think in-test cheating has ever been an issue for me. I've rarely if ever found exam grades that don't match up to formative assessments or class work.

    For state tests, I've always demanded assistance with proctoring since I know I can't do it and therefore won't sign the papers saying I did.
     
  35. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    Oddly enough, I recall being in an earth science class in high school and having a friend that had the class later in the day. I remember sharing information with him about some of the exams. As a teacher I have come to believe that it doesn't matter so much if students know questions they will be asked. That just means they will take the time to make sure they know the answers. Thus, learning the material.
     
  36. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    I hate the idea of common questions.

    I tell my kids from day one: feel free to tell your friends what was on your math test; I can promise that they won't see the same questions on their test.

    I think it's only natural to talk over lunch about your day. And, when you're 15, that means what was on the test. I don't think it's cheating. I think that teachers shoudl have a different version of the test for each class.
     
  37. pete2770

    pete2770 Comrade

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    Yeah, this was common practice in my high school, although I don't know if's changed now with standards. Morning classes got test A and afternoon classes got test B. Or else there was some form of academic competition between classes for rewards, but I think that's frowned on now. :p
     
  38. pete2770

    pete2770 Comrade

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    If it's not too personal Molly, may I ask why/what prevents you? You can send me a PM. I only ask because I have low vision, and it's one of the things I'm definitely worried about when I start teaching.
     
  39. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    Yep, I agree. But, I think it is a form of cheating when students specifically don't study because they know they can find out the questions and then just study for those during a free period. That isn't "learning the material," that is spouting off what happens to be on the exam. I don't see that as a "punishable" form of cheating but it is definitely playing the (flawed) system.

    Of course, any kid with half a brain could just go get the released state test questions and know that those will make up every exam they have all year, every year. I don't make that policy either.

    I supplemented my common tests with free response questions that did change each period.
     
  40. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    I can't stand for more than 5 minutes, and I can't walk around without pain for very long. I can do it for one class, maybe, but by the end of a day, I'd be unable to walk at all.

    At any rate, even if I do it, I'm so distracted by the pain, I stop caring what the kids are doing or not doing.

    My best solution was to position stools around the room so I could switch positions, but in a very crowded classroom, this still limits proctoring.

    You can make the kids think you see more than you do, however. One trick I had was to rotate seating charts. Once you are familiar with the kids and know their habits, you can call on them or interact with them and predict what they are up to without actually seeing everything. The other benefit is when you know your class that well, it's a fun environment and they are less likely to take advantage.

    A good example is the kid who has to sharpen their pencil every freaking 10 minutes. Even if they are across the room, you can hand them a new sharpened pencil just when you know they will need it and everyone will think you know everything. :lol:
     
  41. Cerek

    Cerek Aficionado

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    When I took the GACE test in GA, they collected our cell phones at the door. When I took the Praxis II for Middle School Science, we were not even allowed to bring cell phones into the building. These instructions are printed directly on the admission ticket.

    In my math class, I really didn't have to worry about the first group talking to the second group because the two classes are back-to-back, so the kids have only a few seconds as they pass in the hallway.

    Early in the year, I came up with a seating arrangement that made it very easy to circulate around the room OR simply monitor the kids from my desk (which came in handy as my health issues arose towards the end of the year). I divided the desks into two equal groups and placed them in rows of 2 desks each, with all rows facing the middle of the room, where I had a wide path for walking. That meant those on the "back row" only had 1 person in front of them. I did this out of necessity (at first) because I used two whiteboards, one at the front of the room and one at the back, but the benefits of the arrangement became very apparent at test time.

    During the year, I did catch some students trying to look at their notes during the test and one kid even took his book at and started thumbing through it during the test. :eek: I just looked at him and said "WHAT do you think you're doing?" :confused: When I mentioned the incident to my AP, she said she often allowed students to use their books and notes during tests. I compromised by allowing student to create a "cheat sheet" of their own. They could write any formula or notes on this sheet they wanted to and keep it on their desk during the test. One of my college professors had allowed us to do the same thing, which is where I got the idea. Only a handful of students actually took advantage of this, though.

    During state testing, we had a proctor in every room with each teacher. Since I had just come out of the hospital, my energy level was very low, but I had a retired, veteran teacher as my proctor. We both circulated around the room, but would also take turns sitting and resting for 5 minutes while the other continued to circulate. That way, neither of us got too tired during the test.

    One funny story from my college days. I worked in the Econ/Finance Dept. for my work study and part of my duties included typing tests for the professors. During Finals Week, I was even allowed to copy and collate one of the professors final exams. I had the same class, but a different professor (which I let the office know about up front). At supper that evening, a friend of mine was eating with me that DID have the professor and would be taking the final I had put together. I told him I had seen final exam and it was a doozy. He said "Hey, can you help me out and tell me some of the answers?" I said "You know I can't do that." He said "Oh, come on, can't you tell me just ONE answer." I looked at him, sighed, and said "Ok...ok...I guess one answer won't really hurt." He looked at me with anticipation and I said "Alright, I can tell you for a fact that one of the answers is......C." :lol:
     

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