The most common types of student cheating and how to battle them
Apart from the typical methods students go for to obtain a grade for a submission, there are truly innovative and sophisticated ones, which aren't obvious and easy to detect. In this article, we will break down a variety of student dishonesty techniques and how you can beat them.
So, first things first. There are common types of paper-related cheating that aren't something new but can still be overlooked by teachers, professors, and others dealing with student papers:
• Direct plagiarism
Basically, it's copying, word for word, a text by another writer without proper quotation.
• Mosaic (patchwork) plagiarism
When some phrases and passages by another writer are borrowed and rephrased while keeping to the same structure and original meaning.
In general, rewriting someone else's thoughts in different words. This one is considered cheating only when the sources aren't cited properly.
Turning in a paper that has already been submitted in the past and reusing your own materials without permission or proper citing.
• Contract cheating
Paying someone (usually, fellow student or an essay mill) for writing a paper.
Interestingly, there is one thing all above-mentioned methods have in common, and that's taking someone else's work and passing it off as your own. According to the latest stats of plagiarism detection tools (https://unicheck.com/
With the growth of educational technology aimed at detecting various attempts of cheating among students, they have gone the extra mile in how to trick plagiarism detection software:
• Letters substitution
By replacing characters in words to the duplicates from other languages, students intend to make the text look original for plagiarism checker.
• Translation from a different language
This type of cheating is close to paraphrasing, the only difference is a student translates another author's materials from a foreign language and presents as their own.
• Adding white-colored text to both footer and header of the text
Including non-visible blocks of unique text is meant for lowering an overall plagiarism rate of the paper, which plays an important role in the final grade.
• Inserting pictures with text
Uploading assignment in the form of the pictures with text doesn't allow checking the particular text for matches; therefore, the text can be taken for 100% original.
• Fabricating references
Adding a list of references that do not correspond with the content of the paper, or simply making up non-existing references.
This massive problem of student cheating is definitely something that should be countered in both strategic and tactic manners:
• First, growing academic integrity mindset in newcomers: explaining them why it is important to be authentic in their works and what consequences using plagiarism could have.
• The other way is teaching students basic techniques of searching information, analyzing it, coming up with conclusions, offering ideas, so that they understand the mechanism of dealing with facts and interpreting them.
• And the third solution, which helps to adequately assess students and adds some additional motivation to being original in their writing, is using plagiarism checking solutions.
Current plagiarism detection software is not only seamlessly integrated into Learning Management System and does all the work in bulk and on the background. It also catches most common types of student cheating like mosaic, paraphrasing, or self-plagiarism and displays the final similarity score for every student work in the assignment.
What's more, solutions like Unicheck perform a highly accurate check against the newest Internet sources and university library and provide a detailed clickable color-coded plagiarism report for each paper. Unicheck easily detects letter substitution, which is a rare option, and most importantly, the AI-based functionality for detecting more sophisticated plagiarism forms including translation and contract cheating is arriving soon.
In other words, fully functional solutions to the student cheating problem already exist and really help to fight this phenomenon while the more strategic actions are being implemented.
(с) Unicheck 2018
Here you can find an infographic with types of cheating and latest statistics:
Page Updated Last on: Oct 17, 2018