Is It Time to Retrain B-Schools? in the 3/14 New York Times contained this revealing, disturbing fact:

A study of cheating among graduate students, published in 2006 in the journal Academy of Management Learning & Education, found that 56 percent of all M.B.A. students cheated regularly — more than in any other discipline. The authors attributed that to “perceived peer behavior” — in other words, students believed everyone else was doing it.

How depressing.  We need to throw the ethics curriculum out the window and start fresh because whatever we’ve been doing is inadequate.  How do you reach someone whose sole value is to make as much money as possible?

5 Replies to “Cheats”

  1. pmachoka

    Did you read a similar study that came out a while ago that suggested that students who were in very prestigious schools are actually more prone to cheating than colleges that are less prestigious?

  2. ajgershen

    Here are a few examples that I have seen within SMG and one example I read about in Rick Lax’s Lawyer Boy:

    1) A student has access to older PowerPoints, papers, and business plans of former SMG core students. The student does not plagiarize any work but uses these resources as a foundation for their own work.

    2) A student that asks another student to assist them in a computer design image for their CORE project. CORE professors state ANY work done by a student outside of the group is a violation of the academic conduct code. Teammates were part of the process with the student who did the computer design and were with him the whole time in a tutorial-type learning environment.

    3) A student the night before an exam sends an e-mail through SMGTools to all students in the class asking for notes from the class. The student clearly did not do work in the class, but is sharing the notes cheating? The student is not putting in an honest effort and is using a deceptive e-mail to gain access to notes they do not deserve.

    4)Online tests and students working together to complete the test.

    5) Not knowing one or two answers on an assignment before class begins. Asking a friend or neighbor and blindly writing their answer because some answer is better than no answer.

    6) This example comes from Rick Lax’s book Lawyer Boy. A law professor was known to give the same test each semester and students got access to a 3L’s paper from the year prior. The paper was an A and students used this paper as a basis for their own argument. The e-mail with the 3L’s paper was submitted to over half of the class. One of the students contemplated telling the professor (which he in turn did) and the professor had them write a new paper. In my experience, it was common knowledge that my High School Physics teacher recycled tests and we would often try and gain access to previous ones. But how different is that from students who can buy recycled LSAT tests and hope that they can apply similar logic and see similar concepts or even the exact questions in future tests?

  3. David Randall Post author

    The students in this study acknowledged that they cheated. The cheating label was not put on them by professors. And I’m curious: what vague things do students do that professors might think is cheating?

  4. ajgershen

    But what does cheating this situation mean? I think if you asked the majority of students if they cheat they would say no. But if professors knew what all students are doing they might think what we do does constitute cheating. I’m not condoning cheating, but I think its a vague term.

  5. Angelo H

    What I don’t understand is if they cheat their way through to get their MBA, how does any one ever actually learn the information. Not only are they cheating themselves, they are cheating their employers, who think that they are getting these great employees, but in fact, they are not what they make themselves out to be.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.