Mystery Solved: Why Students Cheat?

Posted on May 30, 2011
Filed Under >Tamashbeen, Education
17 Comments
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Have you ever wondered why students, specially Pakistani students, cheat. A news reporter from The Express Tribune has finally cracked the mystery. ‘We cheat only to pass our exams’ screams the headline. In case you did not already know, students cheat only because they need to pass their exams, otherwise they would never do such a thing!

One should, of course, not be unfair to the newspaper reporter. The headline is in quotes, after all. However, after reading all the surreal student quotes in the story one is left dumbfounded. Supposedly, the students in their responses were serious about what they were saying in trying to explain and justify why they ‘have to’ cheat.

According to the students interviewed in the story, the fault lies with everyone and everything except themselves: the pesky issue of having to pass exams; the fact that its easier to cheat than to study; teachers because they do not do their job; private and government schools disparity; studies are too ‘complicated’. The solutions suggested are even more wonderful: lets abolish grades and just do pass/fail; lets instill fear of God in people. Amazing stuff from the custodians of our future!

Here are some excerpts from The Express Tribune story which is about the Higher Secondary Certificate exams in Sukhur:

The students argue, however, that they “cheat only to pass exams.”

“It’s easier to copy and paste than to cudgel your brains recalling what you have studied and remember,” says Hassan, a student of a leading private college. But for Akhtar Ali the blame for cheating falls squarely on the shoulders of the teachers, who do not do their job properly. “While giving lessons at evening tuition centres, they don’t have any problem answering a thousand questions. During a lecture at the college, however, even a single query ruffles them.”

Zulqarnain, a pre-engineering student of a government institute, blames the disparity of education standards between private and government colleges as well as a lack of admissions prospects at universities. “My parents can’t afford a private college. I need a good percentage to get admission in an engineering university as thousands of students are pitted against each other for a few hundred seats.”

Some students find fault with their course books, which they say are more complicated than the guides that contain simple answers. “The examiner expects us to pen memorised answers which are set down in the guides,” says one student.

… The students proposed remedies to reinvigorate the process of learning. Hassan opines that, “The system of board examinations from class IX should be abandoned and replaced by the semester system.” Seconding this view, Shiraz says that after being checked by the examiner, the papers should be handed over to the parents.

Zulqarnain proposes that the grading and percentage system should be abolished and a student should only be declared as either having passed or failed. Athar argues that the fear of God would work wonders as well. “Cheating is a sin which students will not commit if they fear God,” he argues.

I guess if the students quoted in this story are the ones to go by, we now know why students cheat: because they are just plain stupid!

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17 responses to “Mystery Solved: Why Students Cheat?”

  1. Saima says:

    The sense of entitlement is everywhere in Pakistan. Even amongst cheaters it seems

  2. Irene says:

    Cheaters are stupid. YES.

  3. Shiraz says:

    Being settled in Sweden, I recall the good old days when the examiner used to arrive at the examination hall in the morning, distribute examination papers, work books and that’s it. No one used to be inside the room to keep a check on us as everyone considers him/herself honor bound to not to cheat. It’s usually a 5 hour exam here and everyone used to bring food, beverages and chocolates with them. Its only after 1 hour or so when the examiner used to start visiting us for clarifications etc, and then every hour.

    Ever since sub-continentals have started to invade Swedish and Norwegian universities, the concerned authorities have implemented not just one but two invigilators in each and every examination hall. Keeping up the highest levels of cheating standards, during the first years of this invasion, the first few passed the exam in flying colors, rest is history.

    It’s a shame.

  4. Fellow-Pakistani says:

    Pakistani students are TRUE PAKISTANIS. They do what rest of SUCCESSFUL Pakistanis do in today’s Pakistan. THEY CHEAT!!!!

    Why author of article has problem with that????

    TODAY Pakistan is nation of cheaters. Who so ever cheats more, is more successful.

    Just get it dude!

  5. Maleeha Khan says:

    hahahaha … students never feels ashamed of cheating they think they are doing nothing wrong… and they have excuses for it too as u have read …. actually as far i think our education system has a problem if there is strictness in “actual” than there will b no concept of cheating at all!!

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