The Periscope (Carlisle, Pennsylvania)
Teachers often start the year by telling students that cheating only hurts them, but there is a reason that students are copying other’s answers. School is supposed to be a place for students to learn, to further their knowledge and education. It’s quickly becoming a place for students to memorize information just long enough to take a test and then forget it all the next day. Whether they cheat on the test or not, chances are they won’t remember most of the information anyway. The way they see it, copying answers at least gets them a good grade. They often forget the information though. Maybe it’s just because the information they’re being taught isn’t necessary for their future career. They take the topic because it’s mandatory for a high school diploma and are expected to passionately learn the facts, even though they’ll probably never need that information again. Colleges don’t look at how much a student knows; they look at the grades. Often times, a student will cheat their way into college, then continue on with it if they don’t get caught. At the end of it, all they have is a degree without the necessary knowledge. They end up more “qualified” but less skilled than a student without a degree that actually knows the information. In the early 1940’s, only 20% of students admitted to cheating on their school work at one point or another. In 1996, about 64% of high school students admitted to cheating. That number rose again in 2002 when surveys showed that 74% of high school students had admitted to cheating. Perhaps students wouldn’t feel the need to copy each other’s answers on tests if grades weren’t seen as the most important thing in their life up to this point. They should have a chance to learn what they love, not suffer through learning useless information.
Image Credit: Hannah Westbrook