ERIC Number: EJ853593
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Sep
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Meaningless Grades and a New Dishonesty
Dowling, William C.
Academic Questions, v16 n4 p57-62 Sep 2003
In the days when university grades were given out as an honest measure of academic and intellectual performance, cheating on exams or papers was a a situation in which everyone was immediately aware that people who cheated were mocking or disvaluing the achievement of those who were acting honestly. Today, all this has changed. It's the cheaters who are in control of the moral climate in which exams are given and papers assigned, and students who act honorably are very nearly paralyzed by a diffidence or timorousness about calling public attention to what is going on. The author points to this change, and argues that a lot of the explanation of why this change has occurred has to do with grade inflation. He contends that taking away all legitimate standards of actual performance has turned cheating into a matter of "beating the system." A discussion of the ugliness and moral implications of cheating as a common practice as well as awarding high grades for minimal performance is presented.
Descriptors: Higher Education, Moral Values, Academic Standards, Student Attitudes, Cheating, Grade Inflation, Educational Objectives, College Administration, Group Unity
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A