Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Cell Phones and Cheating, by Sam Giunta

            Increasingly, schoolchildren 13-17 are using their cell phones to cheat in school instead of paper notes, writing on arms or on the brims of hats.
            According to Commonsensemedia.org, 83% of high school students have cell phones, and over half of them since they were twelve.  Compared to even five or ten years ago, this number is drastically changing.
            Even more startling, over 35% of students with cell phones admit to using them to cheat on tests.  52% of these students say that they used the Internet on their smart phones to cheat.  Commonsensemedia.org states that the problem lies within the mindset of students and parents.  Parents whose kids have cell phones are unaware and unwilling to consider that their kids use their cell phones in school.  65% of kids admit to using their phones in school, whether for cheating or other reasons, but only 23% of parents think their children do this.  Additionally, many students do not even realize that they are cheating or doing something against school policies.  One in four students think that accessing notes on a cell phone, texting friends with answers, or using a phone to search the Internet for answers during a test isn't cheating.
            This sort of cheating carries over into the home as well.  38% of students say they have copied things from the web and passed them off as their own work. It also carries over into college, but not in the same ways.  “My teachers don’t seem to care if I have my phone out during class.  I could cheat but it would be difficult.  Tests are really different than in high school,” says a University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.