So, as I mentioned, I had an Italian final Monday morning. It went fine but I found myself slightly distracted. In the back of the room was a rather large breasted blonde who was obviously cheating.
And when I say obvious, I mean ridiculously obvious. She had a stack of books in front of her with her phone hidden behind it. Every few seconds I would watch her type on her phone, and then begin furiously writing in her blue book, glancing up frequently to copy word for word. She also kept glancing around making sure no one had noticed.
Now I’m not going to lie, I did consider telling for a few seconds. But I quickly decided that I’m far too old for tattling. I was infuriated though. Not necessarily about this particular test but about the whole system that caters to it.
First of all, cheating does not occur everywhere. I would never make a generalization like that and I know first hand that its not the case. At my previous university, which I must say, was a much more prestigious and competitive school, cheating was unheard of. It never came up, and I’m sure if it did students would have been shocked and insulted.
Due to financial reasons however, I’ve recently transferred to a more affordable and much larger state school. I’m not sure if its the type of students or professors, or just the sheer size but things are very different here. Academically speaking, professors are primarily concerned with daily homework assignments (seriously I have homework every night), rather than interesting class discussions (and obviously a large final paper or exam).
This is where I believe the cheating comes in. If all that matters is the busy work assigned (and there is a lot of it) students will do what they can simply to get by. Few people seem to want to truly impress their professors with well thought out comments or original ideas. Instead, everyone is working towards that check on their homework assignment, or in this case an A on a very straightforward (and easy) final exam.
I’m sure this isn’t exclusive to my university. And I can even see it happening in elementary schools, as more and more are teaching to the test. We all no the American education system isn’t the best by far, but is this what we can expect to happen? And more importantly, whats the solution?