CSI Students and Staff Share Their Views on Cheating and Cheaters
By Andrea Karshan-Bhatti
Silently tapping away at your iPhone during an exam, stretching your neck to better position yourself, or sneaking in a small crib sheet. According to a Boston Globe report, 75% of college students have done it in one form or another, so the Banner interviewed CSI students to get their thoughts on those dishonest students who take that extra peek.
Some students who were interviewed were vehemently against cheating.
“It is dishonest; there is no point because if you get caught then you are out, and your test gets taken away,” said Emillee Barrett, a sophomore at CSI. “It is pointless.”
Barrett says she witnessed students cheating in her BIO 106 class.
“I see people cheating all the time. Doing the peek thing, looking at other papers. Sometimes people look at my paper. I am like no you had weeks to study and prepare for this, please don’t look at my paper,” said Barrett. “In a final, someone had their phone out Googling answers.”
Barrett also said that cheating is selfish and can be incredibly distracting to others during an exam.
“Cheating would distract me for a couple of seconds because I would wonder what they were doing,” Barrett said. “It would still be in the back of my head this person is cheating over there.”
Aly Vargas, a sophomore at CSI, thinks cheating is pointless. “If you don’t know it,” she said. “Why cheat?”
Vargas was in class when a student was caught cheating during her freshman year. The teacher kicked the student out of class. Vargas found it to be distracting and disruptive to the class.
One CSI sophomore, who asked to remain anonymous due to the sensitivity of the subject, cheated during a PSY 101 exam. He had his notes on his laptop in the auditorium and was double-checking his answering on them.
“An opportunity presented itself to cheat,” the student said.” “If you have an opportunity to check your answers against a credible source why not?”
The sophomore in question said that doesn’t think his actions were unfair to other students in the class.
“No, I don’t feel I was unfair to other students,” the sophomore said. “I studied as well. I just had a certain advantage.”
Angelika Perrotto, a sophomore says she understands that some students are under a lot of pressure, such as overbearing parents or keeping one’s GPA up for graduate school.
“If you are really desperate, and you really need to pass go ahead and cheat,” Perrotto said.
In a PSY 200 level class, Perrotto saw a student cheat.
“The professor was really so lenient, so she had her notebook out and she was cheating that way,” Perrotto said.”If they are willing to risk it then go ahead and cheat.”
Perrotto thinks that cheating is unfair, but she believes in her work—and karma.
“I don’t care if someone cheats because if I study hard, I have to have faith in myself,” Perrotto said.”I believe in karma and what is going to happen to the cheater is what is going to happen to them.”
Muhamad Fattah, a junior at CSI, blames the schools for cheating.
“I feel if a student has to cheat, it is because the educator has failed, in some way shape or form,” said Fattah. “I feel that cheating is the product of a failed education system because students should want to learn.”
Fattah witnessed cheating in various chemistry and biology class. He says he saw students using their cellphones to cheat.
“The policies against cheating can’t keep up with the technologies for cheating,” Fattah said.
Fattah says students cheat because the result, in the end, is the same for the cheater and the non-cheater. No one sees his hard work, according to him, just who passes the test.
Thomas Byrne, a freshman at CSI, doesn’t like cheating, but he sympathizes with those who cheat.
“I don’t like it, but I can understand it,” Bryne said. “I understand there is a lot of pressure on certain people to do well.”
He says he feel some majors more than others have more pressure to do well.
He says as a Liberal Arts major he doesn’t feel the pressure is as high as someone working towards medical school or law school.
Byrne says cheating is unfair especially when there is a grading curve.
“If there is a grading curve and someone suddenly does better everyone else is either pushed up or pushed down depending on what happens,” said Byrne.
A senior at CSI, who requested anonymity, witnessed cheating in her CSC 346 class.
“I noticed a lot of people cheating last semester right before the final by getting copies of the previous class’ test and using them,” she said. “I didn’t like that because I felt that the professor taught the class efficiently; there was no reason to cheat.”
The source once reported someone for cheating.
“I saw someone take a picture of my work and I asked them to delete it so it wouldn’t affect my work,” she said. “Instead of deleting it they said, ‘No bitch.’ I went up to the Professor and told him that what happened.”
Even though the student believes that there should be a “three strikes you’re out” rule with cheating, she thinks college students should know better than to cheat.
“You should know not to cheat; you are in college,” she said. “Even if people do cheat it doesn’t get them far because they aren’t going to learn the information required.”
Randi Bograd, an ESL teacher at CSI, thinks students are losing in the end when they cheat.
“They are just cheating themselves,” Bograd said.” I know students get nervous, and they feel so much pressure to do well. I don’t like to think that students rely on cheating to get through a test. But I know that there are some that do that.”