Original reporting by Lakewood High Spartan News Network staffer Marilyn Parker, who is a tb-two* intern.
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Ask anyone at any school and chances are great you'll find someone who knows someone who has cheated on a test or assignment at least once. Or, if the people are being honest, maybe you'll be talking to the cheaters themselves. - A study from Stanford reports that it's not the struggling students as much as the high achieving ones feeling pressure about college admission. The Josephson Institute of Ethics, an organization that collects data on high school behavior every two years, reported that nationally, students who said they had cheated on an exam in the past year dropped from 59 percent in 2010 to 51 percent in 2012. - Our colleagues at the Spartan News Network, the newspaper and website at Lakewood High in St. Petersburg, recently gathered statistics about the dirty deed and found a higher number. Remember, no finger pointing at Lakewood; cheating happens (see above). -From a survey of 302 Lakewood students (in its Center for Advanced Technologies, Center for Journalism and Multimedia and Academy for Aquatic Management Systems and Environmental Technology), here are some telling results:
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BY THE NUMBERS
79.4 percent said they have cheated at least once in school
1 in 4 people said they cheat on tests or exams
49.2 percent said that copying homework is not cheating
52.5 percent said they cheat on class work
63.1 percent said they cheat on homework
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OUT OF THE MOUTHS OF CHEATERS
"Sometimes I just feel the need to succeed." - sophomore boy
"A lot of times I don't have time to do the homework." - senior boy
"I'm in CAT, and the unofficial thing for CAT is 'Cheating All the Time,'" - senior boy
"Yes, I think cheating is wrong. But I do it anyway." - junior girl
"Our school system is awful and we learn useless stuff. Why do I need to know the Pythagorean theorem? Why do I need to know Newton's laws? I don't care about that. I don't think cheating matters, because in the real world we have an unlimited source for all information, so I think if you're good at cheating, just do it." - senior boy
"Everyone does it (allow others to copy their homework), and if they need help I'll give it to them." - senior girl
"It's just sometimes you may study, but at times you can forget and you feel like you really need that grade and just have that feeling just to look around that class and get a couple answers." - senior boy
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IT'S NOT ROCKET SCIENCE
Most cheating techniques are not particularly ingenious, or even effective. Here are methods some Lakewood teachers have encountered.
- A student wears long sleeves (IN FLORIDA) to conceal the answers written on arms.
- Whispering coded comments: "Boys are ugly" means the answer is B; Apples are good, A, etc.
- Taping chords on the back of a guitar.
- Installing the free Spanish translator application on a smartphone, then hiding it under the desk.