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I took a test today morning and I saw that the person sitting next to me used her phone repeatedly, I believe it was to check the power point slides for answers. The fact that this student also asked me for the answer to a question before I left also raises my suspicious slightly.

I don't know this person. I decided not to report it this morning because I don't feel quite alright accusing anyone, at least not in person. I am tempted to send an anonymous email and explain what happened, although I don't think it will make any difference. I'm not happy at all with the incident, because the test wasn't exactly trivial and some of us might fail, while other people could pass simply copying the answers from their phone.

What should I do?

  • If your school has an academic integrity clause, you should follow through with this. – Sean Roberson Jun 2 '18 at 16:42
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    You should have called an invigilator over - explained quietly what you saw and they could have then watched and dealt with it if she continued. Now it is much more difficult - posting on here won’t condone your inaction. – Solar Mike Jun 2 '18 at 16:54
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    @SolarMike This woman was sitting next to me. She would have noticed, and also a lot other people. It would have been impossible to do it without causing a general disruption. – M.S Jun 2 '18 at 17:09
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    You could have handed the invigilator a note asking to go to the back to explain... but its over now. – Solar Mike Jun 2 '18 at 17:12
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A good question!

There is not much you can do now. You cannot prove anything and can not even name the cheating person. If you think that explaining the situation can help the invilgator to make cheating less likely the next time, you should write them an anonymous email.

I've heard that there are some universities with so-called "honor codes" that tell you to report this - if this is the case for you, do absolutely report it (anonymously).

  • >and can not even name the cheating person. Well, I could find out easily, but I won't bother to look into it. My problem is with the institution that allows this kind of situation. – M.S Jun 2 '18 at 18:10
  • What do you mean by that? What is the problem? – Tahabe Jun 2 '18 at 18:11
  • "What do you mean by that?" We students have access to a list with all the people taking the course, including our pictures. I believe it would be easy to find out who this person was. "What is the problem?" Crowded classrooms with not enough assistants (just one in fact) to avoid having people cheating. – M.S Jun 2 '18 at 18:17
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    "Do you want to tell the department that they do not prevent cheating effectively?" I think that's the idea. But I'm worried about what kind of measures the department might take with us knowing someone in the class cheated. – M.S Jun 2 '18 at 19:21
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    If you report this anonymously, they can not do anything besides taking better care the next time. (It is also possible/likely that nothing changes.) I don't think you should be worried. – Tahabe Jun 2 '18 at 22:45
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The fact that this student also asked me for the answer to a question before I left also raises my suspicious slightly.

Slightly?!

I decided not to report it this morning because I don't feel quite alright accusing anyone, at least not in person.

Why not?

You can also do this via email or phone call.

Imagine yourself in the position of the instructor, or the proctor, or the department administrator, ten years from now. Wouldn't you want the student who saw irregularities to let you know? You can't revamp your exam proctoring procedures unless you're aware that there are opportunities to cheat in the current set-up.

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