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Old 04-01-2006, 09:00 AM   #1
Bob Russell
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Mobile devices encourage exam cheating

We hear a lot about how technology and inexpensive computing is already beginning to revolutionize the education industry. Unfortunately, there may be a somewhat negative effect now that students have some pretty powerful and connected computing capabilities in their hands.

There was a time when calculators were banned from test takers. And when they were allowed at test time, even the earliest models of programmable calculators could be used in clever ways to contain help that wasn't allowed by teachers. But now, you pretty much can hold full documents of information and cheat sheets on a typical cell phone. They can be contained in watches and mp3 players and shoes and belts and just about any form factor. You can even instant message people for help, or do a web search for more information. Quite handy, I suppose, for the reckless student willing to cheat needing a date in history or a definition.

According to the BBC, "Cases of malpractice detected by exam boards in England rose by more than a quarter last summer, new figures show." The good news is that "The level of cheating is up but still relatively low." And if you are wondering how they are cheating, it turns out that "[a] third of cases involved plagiarism, collusion or copying work."

But in my experience, those students that really wanted to cheat and were willing to take the risk of being caught, were also the ones that would find a way regardless of the technology. Paper is still doing pretty well in the battle against e-books, and paper is probably also a pretty popular choice for students that are cheating. Clearly, technology is no good or bad in its inherent nature. It's a facilitator... whether for good purposes or bad.

Related Link: One of the sites that seems to frequently pop up on web sites about mobile devices is Handheld Learning, where they currently seem to have some information on how Origami devices may be used in education.

And, finally, lest we be accused of plagerism in this article, here is where you can get all of the original scoop!... BBC News
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Old 04-02-2006, 02:19 PM   #2
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Quote:
But in my experience, those students that really wanted to cheat and were willing to take the risk of being caught, were also the ones that would find a way regardless of the technology.
Yup. Technology has nothing to do with lack of moral character. It just makes it easier for some people to engage in such behavior.
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Old 04-06-2006, 04:16 PM   #3
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Here's an interesting example of how "technology" can help cheating...
http://www.redferret.net/?p=6052
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Old 04-06-2006, 05:15 PM   #4
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LOL! Imagine that pen using flexible paper technology
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