Students assigned to cheat on exam use doctored Little Brother cover and many other clever methods

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24 Responses to “Students assigned to cheat on exam use doctored Little Brother cover and many other clever methods”

  1. Jason says:

    This sounds kinda familiar. It feels like it was pulled from a episode of Naruto when a test was purposely made incredibly difficult so the majority of those taking the test were forced to cheat (using various ninja techniques) in order to pass it.

    http://burninglizardstudios.blogspot.com/2010/06/manga-reviews-naruto-volume-5.html 

  2. Meh, most just kept a cheat note, nothing impressive about that. Only a handful used innovative methods, which was clearly a waste of their time as even the most blatant cheaters went uncaught.

    • lknope says:

      Ironically, that sounds like a justification for cheating.  Why waste your time and learn something new when it’s so easy to cheat on the test?

      The point of the exercise was to learn to think like a cheater or to “think outside the box,” so the people who came up with the most innovative methods were getting the most from the exercise.  Just because it’s possible to blatantly cheat on a test doesn’t mean that learning the test material is a waste of your time.

      • Technically though, going to extreme ends to cheat defeats the purpose of cheating, often making it less work to play fair. In this case there was little or no risk of being caught, so complex solutions were counter productive.

        • WhyBother says:

          “Technically though, going to extreme ends to cheat defeats the purpose of cheating, often making it less work to play fair.”

          Unless you’re really good at cheating. Just because the typical person would spend ten times as long duplicating your cheat as they would studying, it doesn’t mean that you put that much effort into it. You could just be better at cheating. Similarly, just because you put in ten times the effort at studying as a typical person doesn’t necessarily mean you will out-perform them. You could just be really terrible with the tested material.

          Cheating isn’t just about dodging work; it’s about shifting work from something you’re bad at (physics, math, history, etc.) to something you’re good at (cheating). And honestly, it’s not that bad a strategy when you consider that the ability to cheat is a more general skill. It translates well to any test, regardless of subject. Further, if you take the time to cheat at every opportunity, even when you don’t really need to, you can improve your cheating abilities for when you really need them. Then it definitely shouldn’t take that much effort to set up a cheat in the future.

          So long as you can avoid getting caught or being unprepared for a follow-up — a second test, a higher-level class, or a career that actually uses the subject — it makes a certain degree of sense. Alternatively, if you really want to make cheating unprofitable for everyone, have a test which is more closely linked to the material than it is to any previously test: assign a unique project to each person that actually requires them to use what they were supposed to learn.

  3. Rachel says:

    I think he should have got more reaction to his esperanto line.

    • SamSam says:

      It’s the problem with embedding a joke on a slide and only getting to it after talking for three minutes. Most people will have already read it — but it would have been rude laugh while he was talking — and when he gets to it the impact is lost.

    • drabkikker says:

       I think everybody saw it was extremely bad Esperanto.

  4. alfanovember says:

    THINKPAD REPRESENT!

  5. awjt says:

    The vid was awesome… the payoff of a VIP parking pass was motivation to cheat WELL.  There were a few good ones, although no audio ones

  6. Zod says:

    All’s fair in love and war…and it is guaranteed that our enemy will *NOT* fight us using our rules of fair-play!

  7. Jeremy Mesiano-Crookston says:

    “What’s the answer to number five, you ask me Professor? Well, I have a question for you on this fine Wednesday… How secure do you think the Happy Times Canary Song Day Care is? You know the one: where you left little Ashley at exactly 7:52 this morning. Aaaaaaah yes Professor, that IS the answer to number five. It is indeed.”

  8. gizmomathboy says:

    They have an error in their pre-pub of the paper. Joseph Menn wrote Fatal System Error.

    http://www.amazon.com/Fatal-System-Error-Bringing-Internet/dp/1586487485

  9. Nadreck says:

    Well, it’s a beginner’s class and all that but the combination of being allowed to bring extraneous objects into the examination hall, something they never allowed in my day, and the availability, also unavailable until recently, of colour printers with any fonts you like in them, make this a rather trivial exercise.  In my old Engineering school two of the students who were caught used handbuilt morse code radios in the shoe heels and carefully pre-planted rolls of toilet paper with answers printed on them.  Presumably the people who weren’t caught did better than that but  I wouldn’t know about such things.

  10. Greg Gage says:

    This could have been a great paper.  But where are the citations?  Especially sweeping statements as the opening 2 sentences that set up their premise:  “Adversaries cheat.  We don’t.”.   I am not sure if this is satire, or pseudo-science.   I loved their talk though!

  11. DewiMorgan says:

    The temptation to cheat this test would have been HUGE!

    I mean, the temptation to break the *one rule* they gave for the class: don’t memorise it.

  12. Benjamin Stürmer says:

    Did anyone else notice that the student who made the Big Brother cover actually  did memorize the first 18 digits of pi?

  13. zikman says:

    well it’s a good thing I already have the first 80 digits of pi memorized. twenty more would be trivial.

  14. The 76 in the top row needs a 1 in between them.  Wow, memorizing pi in high school finally paid off!

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