Why Students Cheat


Clayton Keeling

Students in recent years have admitted to cheating more than any generation before.

By Clayton Keeling, Staff Writer

Students today are more influenced to cheat than any generation before them and the problem isn’t as simple as students looking off someone else’s paper. The majority of cheating cases are a result of changes that students didn’t make, but reacted to. 

The transformation of school from a place of learning to a place of competition is a huge cause. Schools no longer focus on their students knowing the material, and instead teach them what will be on standardized tests and what they need to know to get an A in the class. This only shows students that getting high grades is more important than learning the content, leading them to cheat. 

Pressure is another factor. Parents want their children to succeed and drill into them how important it is to maintain a high GPA so that they can get into a good college. This further reinforces the idea that grades are more important than actual knowledge. Students are pressured by parents, coaches , directors and AP’s to keep their grades high as they decide their ever looming future.

Students today are stressed by a hundred different things, and in such a competitive setting, cutting corners is inevitable. Teachers say not to cheat, but the rules are hardly upheld unless it’s plagiarism or cheating on a major grade, and even then there are gray areas. When it’s easy, helps you get a better grade, and doesn’t carry real negative consequences, how can one expect students not to cheat? 

That being said, cheating isn’t morally right. But that doesn’t stop many. It’s easy to simply condemn everyone who’s participated in cheating and tell them they’re terrible students, but what if instead we looked at changes in the education system that forced such competitive attitudes that lead to cheating?

Maybe changing the ideas that brought cheating into acceptance would help more, rather than crucifying students for trying to cope to a harsh institution.