The Idea against cheating
Cheating is an academic dishonesty practiced in the academic discipline by students in schools and colleges in different forms. Cheating involves breaking rules and academic conventions set in the academic field to deter students and other learners from falsely and unjustly claiming grades and other academic success, which they have not worked to attain.
While proponents for cheating support the idea, yet cheating undermines the academic integrity of the student by causing students unjustly gain academic grades without intrinsic value and hinders learning.
Cheating is condemned in the academic discipline as that which undermines academic integrity of the learner at different levels of their academic pursuits by causing students gain academic grades that do not reflect the academic capabilities of the student. That allows students gain grades that do not have intrinsic value for the learner.
Bouville supports the idea on the lack of intrinsic value for grades earned through cheating by asserting that admission to universities and other institutions of higher learning are based on the grades earned at high school, when a student completes high school education (2).
Bouville continues to assert that unjustly gained grades enables student to get grades, which do not reflect the academic capabilities of the student (2). In addition to that, the purpose of testing students to determine their academic abilities in different field is defeated, ending up with graduates without the competence required in their fields of specialization.
Bouville argues that grades directly relate to the intrinsic value they are deemed be equivalent to and show the academic abilities of the student (3). Grades play a critical role in enabling others determine what a graduate can do, and forms the basis for predicting future success of the student (Bouville, 4).
Bouville affirms that cheating hinders learning at different academic levels with the explanation that students who engage in cheating fail to engage in academic tasks such as doing their homework by copying the work of others, thus hindering them from learning what they were required to do.
Thus, these students do not develop academically and when faced with situations that demand practical application of the skills and content they purportedly studied, fail to perform, casting doubt on their academic knowledge. However, proponents of cheating do not view anything wrong with cheating.
In support of cheating
Cheating, students argue, is a motivating factor that drives them toward achieving better grades (Jordan, 1). Arguments show that it is not always the case that when a student gets bad grades in a specific subject, the student has low academic abilities. A number of variables influence the final grade a student gets in class.
Among the factors, include the perceptions by teachers who might give a student a grade because the teacher either perceives the student as a good academic performer or perceives the student to be a poor academic performer and gives the grade accordingly. In addition to that, other variables that affect student performance include lack of unpreparedness due to underlying reasons such as sickness, family background, and lack of other supporting factors that might be termed as environmental factors.
That implies that the argument that cheating interferes with the learning of the student, and interferes with the academic integrity of the student and future carrier might be invalid. Thus, cheating might support a student with academic abilities attain grades that reflect the actual abilities of the student hindered by external factors. Other factors in favor of cheating include pressure to attain better grades in school or college by teachers and students, and the fear of failure.
Despite proponents arguing in support of cheating, cheating is an academic misdemeanor that undermines the academic integrity of the student and institutions of learning.
Students awarded grades they have not worked for find it difficult to use the competence their grades suggest they have since grades show how good a student is in a specific discipline. While every student could like to excel academically as might be the expectations of the student and parents, yet, academic dishonesty places the student at a difficult position to use the grades that might lead to lifelong embarrassments and disgrace.
In addition to that, students who cheat, get grades enabling them admission into universities where they find difficulties to use the grades and pursue university courses negatively influencing their academic life and gradually into their social lives. Thus, the guilt pervades the mind into the entire life of the student.
The student undergoes a process to determine the ability of the student to perform in a specific field and the level of learning the student has gained in the same area to determine improvements required and not to portray the student negatively. In addition to that, teachers and parents should teach students to view learning positively and benefits of going through the process of learning without pressuring the students for better grades leading to cheating. Thus, cheating should be discouraged at all levels of academic life of the student.
Bouville, Mathieu. “Why is cheating wrong.” n.d http://www.mathieu.bouville.name/education-ethics/Bouville-cheating.pdf
Jordan, A. E. “College Student Cheating: The Role of Motivation, Perceived Norms, Attitudes, and Knowledge of Institutional Policy”. 2001. http://faculty.mwsu.edu/psychology/dave.carlston/Writing%20in%20Psychology/Academic%20Dishonesty/Grop%204/norms.pdf