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Foreign Students Four Times More Likely To Cheat As Officials Catch 50,000 Exam Fraudsters

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http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/630829/essay-writing-service-foreign-students-cheating-exams-university

Nearly 50,000 university students have been caught in the last three years, according to new figures – but just one per cent were dismissed.

Foreign non-EU students made up more than a third of all cases but accounted for just 12 per cent of the student population, requests from 70 universities showed.

At Queen Mary University of London, three in four postgraduates found plagiarising were from abroad, including a third from China.

The statistics, from 129 UK universities, revealed 362 students were expelled because of cheating.

..

Professor Geoffrey Alderman of the University of Buckingham said: "What I'd call type-1 plagiarism, copying and pasting, is on the wane because it's so easy to detect.

"But my impression is that type-2 cheating, using a bespoke essay-writing service, is increasing."

If you are "buying" a genuine bespoke essay how can that be detected unless they themselves are mashing up previous essays? Does anyone read previous works to check for a similar style?

I have always wondered what the quality of the work is like from these essay writing companies.

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Foreign people don't uderstand that cheatig is bad.

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I'm doing an OU course at the moment and about 50% of one of the tutorials was spent telling us how wrong cheating is, how it can be cultural and how easily plagiarism is detected.

I'm quite happy to submit my own efforts when the pass mark is only 40%!!

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http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/630829/essay-writing-service-foreign-students-cheating-exams-university

If you are "buying" a genuine bespoke essay how can that be detected unless they themselves are mashing up previous essays? Does anyone read previous works to check for a similar style?

I have always wondered what the quality of the work is like from these essay writing companies.

I'd love to start an essay-writing company, and sell all the students on a course exactly the same essay.

The cheating sh*ts would hardly be in a position to openly complain. :P

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Back in the day when I was an undergraduate they used to viva voce some students before dishing out the grades. They would ask you not only about your exam essays etc but on wider topics associated with the course. I would imagine that type of face to face interrogation might make one or two people sweat a bit.

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Back in the day when I was an undergraduate they used to viva voce some students before dishing out the grades. They would ask you not only about your exam essays etc but on wider topics associated with the course. I would imagine that type of face to face interrogation might make one or two people sweat a bit.

I had one of those, but I was almost too arseholed to stand up! They got nothing out of me! :blink: My dad had told me about the Germans! :(

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I'm doing an OU course at the moment and about 50% of one of the tutorials was spent telling us how wrong cheating is, how it can be cultural and how easily plagiarism is detected.

I'm quite happy to submit my own efforts when the pass mark is only 40%!!

Lot of people from the sub-continent on the course?

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On a similar topic, I've had a few cases in the past of cheating in telephone interview where the candidate got someone else to stand in for them. I guess this makes sense because many firms use the phone screen to weed out the no hopers so, if you get past that, you're going to be taken more seriously. The most egregious, and easily spotted, was a guy who sounded first language English on the phone but, when he turned up at the office, had a thick Indian accent! I suspect with larger companies where the person doing the phone interview may never get to meet you in person, this might happen quite a lot.

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Ages ago when I was working in Oman an Indian colleague told me quite openly that she had paid someone to write her dissertation. She found it very funny that I was shocked and told me that at home 'everybody does it'.

Roll on a couple of decades to mid 90s and I was even more appalled when my daughter, then about 17, wanted to cash in her post office savings to enable her older boyfriend, doing his law finals at a London uni, to pay for the dissertation which he hadn't done, and no longer had time to do. Without this he was going to fail his finals.

In the end, the price went up and up as the deadline approached, and his parents paid (IIRC) about £1k for some lecturer at another London uni to provide the dissertation. (Might add that the whole family was on the dodgy side and although the boyfriend did finally qualify as a solicitor he was later caught out in dodgy dealings and was struck off! Needless to say I was highly relieved when the relationship died the death long before that.)

I still blame myself for not reporting any of this. I had naively thought that this sort of thing didn't happen in the UK.

I have done several Open University exams, the last only a couple of years ago, and I think at every one, certainly the last few, you had to take some form of official ID such as a passport and have it on your desk to be checked in the exam room. And you had to pass the exam in order to pass the course, so even if you had paid someone to do brilliant coursework, it wouldn't help if you couldn't manage the exam. And brilliant coursework marks would count for nothing if you could only scrape a pass in the exam - you had to achieve the same level in both.

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I'm sure all these cheats are quickly found out when they enter the jobs market....

...as baristas and burger flippers.

I've interviewed many recent graduates over my career and I can confirm, anecdotally at least, that over recent years I've encountered quite a few who clearly knew absolutely nothing about their area of study. One of things I always do when interviewing a new graduate is to ask them to tell me which courses they took as part of their degree and to tell me which ones they enjoyed the most and/or were best at. I then ask a few basic questions in those areas to check that they're not deluding themselves but, also, to be sure they studied what they said they did. 95% of the time I'll get enough to know that they're not making it up, 5% of the time though they either can't tell me what courses they took or clearly have no idea of what the course contained.

A recent example:

Candidate with a maths degree from a university you'll probably have heard of: 'I really enjoyed number theory'.

Me: Great, I enjoyed that too, so tell me what the prime number theorem is.

Candidate: I don't remember.

Me: OK, if I said asymptotic would that give you a clue?

Candidate: Sorry, I don't know what you mean.

The guy was Chinese and his English wasn't brilliant so I went through it several times including writing it on a white board and drawing an asymptotic graph but it didn't help.

He probably did have the degree he claimed (as in a piece of paper from the actual university with his name on it) but I'm very certain he never submitting any of his own work or wrote his own exams. He may have attended a few lectures I guess, but even then I'm not sure.

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I'm doing an OU course at the moment and about 50% of one of the tutorials was spent telling us how wrong cheating is, how it can be cultural and how easily plagiarism is detected.

I'm quite happy to submit my own efforts when the pass mark is only 40%!!

Apparently, they have some clever software with an algorithm that checks it against all other essays in academia or somefink. At least that's what they told me when I was studying. I call bo110x, it sounds like a tv detector can.

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I've interviewed many recent graduates over my career and I can confirm, anecdotally at least, that over recent years I've encountered quite a few who clearly knew absolutely nothing about their area of study.

A recent example:

Candidate with a maths degree from a university you'll probably have heard of: 'I really enjoyed number theory'.

The guy was Chinese and his English wasn't brilliant so I went through it several times including writing it on a white board and drawing an asymptotic graph but it didn't help.

I would be wary of employing a Chinese person as they are chain smoking gamblers, and eat endangered species. Koreans are OK, as they make good domestic appliances, and only eat dogs! Obviously I would prefer a British graduate, especially if I went to university with his dad! :blink:

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I've interviewed many recent graduates over my career and I can confirm, anecdotally at least, that over recent years I've encountered quite a few who clearly knew absolutely nothing about their area of study. One of things I always do when interviewing a new graduate is to ask them to tell me which courses they took as part of their degree and to tell me which ones they enjoyed the most and/or were best at. I then ask a few basic questions in those areas to check that they're not deluding themselves but, also, to be sure they studied what they said they did. 95% of the time I'll get enough to know that they're not making it up, 5% of the time though they either can't tell me what courses they took or clearly have no idea of what the course contained.

A recent example:

Candidate with a maths degree from a university you'll probably have heard of: 'I really enjoyed number theory'.

Me: Great, I enjoyed that too, so tell me what the prime number theorem is.

Candidate: I don't remember.

Me: OK, if I said asymptotic would that give you a clue?

Candidate: Sorry, I don't know what you mean.

The guy was Chinese and his English wasn't brilliant so I went through it several times including writing it on a white board and drawing an asymptotic graph but it didn't help.

He probably did have the degree he claimed (as in a piece of paper from the actual university with his name on it) but I'm very certain he never submitting any of his own work or wrote his own exams. He may have attended a few lectures I guess, but even then I'm not sure.

Maybe they didn't teach any French maths.

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I see we've qukcly dropped 'foriegn' and are using 'Indian' - with Chinese chucked in at he end.

As I've had more experience over the years, I find it harder to to believe anything an Indian-Indian tells me.

Its not like the an odd bad apple, the behavior is so common.

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I did a 'degree' course, early 2000 in London - about 50% of the course were from overseas (thai, malay, HK chinese, India) & I got on well with the majority of them.

Most were from money & it was quite obvious that a fair few of them were getting others to do their work - this was mostly graphic based work with some written elements

I even did some work for one of them that was very well paid!

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In early 2012 I was offered $25k USD per dissertation for Arab undergraduates. The trick apparently is to deliberately aim for a 3rd or 2:2.

I declined the offer as I had other pressing issues in my life but I reckon if I'd stayed in KSA I could have comfortable raked in another 50-75 k USD a year tax free ;)

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I had to do a big dissertation for a postgraduate degree; I didn't enjoy it and didn't learn much from doing it; other than there was no way that I was going on to do a PhD and have another four years if the same.

They don't seem to have much value in terms of learning things and I have a distrust of "projects" in general.

I have worked with numerous people who have taken the junior accountancy qualification AAT and the majority of them haven't completed it because it ends with a big project which assesses little bar their ability to do projects which is not what an intensely practical bookkeeping course should be doing.

I guess they are one of those things that will always be with us but they don't seem to serve any educational purposes.

Looking back if I could have paid for one for a reasonable sum then I would have done as it would have meant a six month summer holiday.

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The current security requirements when sitting Microsoft computer-based exams at testing centres suggest that cheating is a major problem:

- they ask for 2 forms of photo ID

- you have a photo taken before each exam

- you have to roll up your sleeves to show there's nothing hidden

- you have to turn your pockets inside out to show they're empty

- you have to pull up your trouser legs to show the top of your socks

- you have to "pat yourself down" (I'm not sure what the point of this is)

I suspect some of the test centres themselves are security risks, given that some are of the college-above-a-chipshop variety.

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Apparently, they have some clever software with an algorithm that checks it against all other essays in academia or somefink. At least that's what they told me when I was studying. I call bo110x, it sounds like a tv detector can.

No, the software definitely exists - we use it to check plagiarism in submissions to our journals which is a lot more common than you'd think (or hope) especially from certain countries. Since all journal content is now online it's relatively simple for the software to compare against this vast database and look for similar strings of text. It outputs a score of how plagiarise-y the paper is, plus the matches. A low score indicates just the odd random phrase repeating, or maybe a sentence or two, and you can safely let this pass; a higher score indicates whole paragraphs are the same, and this needs following up with the authors.

I imagine most student plagiarism is copying chunks of text from the published literature, so the same principle applies. What it won't catch is someone else writing the essay for you, or 'standard' essays in circulation but not published somewhere the program can pick them up.

Edit to add: Apparently some (most?) universities also load up all submitted essays from their students to a local version of this software ("Authenticate") and compare against this. So that would pick up standard essays in circulation.

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Apparently, they have some clever software with an algorithm that checks it against all other essays in academia or somefink. At least that's what they told me when I was studying. I call bo110x, it sounds like a tv detector can.

Why would it need to be clever? All it needs to do is scan the text of all previous essays in that area and scan published papers and books. I doubt it's that complex for a good programmer to write.

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The current security requirements when sitting Microsoft computer-based exams at testing centres suggest that cheating is a major problem:

I suspect some of the test centres themselves are security risks, given that some are of the college-above-a-chipshop variety.

The big clue that people don't do the work themselves is in the teacher training adverts.

They run something like "Got a geography degree? Want to teach geography? First you need to pass a basic maths and english test before you can do the PCGE"

No one who has genuinely got a degree should need to do a maths and english test.

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What about all those fictious places of learning where no lesson was ever attended?

Someone some time ago did confide to me once that someone took their driving test for them......

I suppose these misdemenors evolve, adapt and change over time.

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