So I just took a very simple, all-multiple choice test. I will straight up say I did not cheat, put bags phone etc across the room from where I sat, and the test was very easy. I marked all questions that I’m not sure of with an asterisk, and then when I went over the test papers, I wrote down the questions in the palm of my hand so I could check for answers immediately after handing in the test and getting out of the room. This is something I suddenly wanted to do so I know what I did wrong immediately and get a slightly clearer idea of how I did. I probably should’ve just asked the TA for an extra scrap of paper to make it transparent but I didn’t think of it at the time. I handed in the test and waved him goodbye. I’m not sure if he saw that stuff was written in my palm when I waved at him, but he just said like have a good one. Now that I think about it, this is far from cheating but probably an ambiguous move that might stir up misunderstandings. Just in case I took a picture of my palm with the contents to show that the contents are not like cheat reminders, just a list of the questions I didn’t feel confident about in the test so I could check them later, but still I’m worried that misunderstandings will crop up later and I will be swept into confrontations. Should I be concerned about my academia integrity standing?

Also it’s not an exam, not sure why the testing tag shows up like that. It’s a normal quiz.

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    I don't understand why you think you will be accused if you haven't been already. Showing the questions to others might be a violation, of course.
    – Buffy
    Oct 18, 2018 at 20:55
  • Oh...I didn’t think about that...geez, my understanding of cheating is limited to using inhibited methods to score unfairly on a test...never thought that taking down test questions might be considered a breach as well. Short answer is I don’t know. I didn’t think it would be because we’ll students can just memorize the questions and replicate them again outside right? But I don’t know if I’ll get into trouble for that. Sitting in Canada Ontario btw. Oct 18, 2018 at 20:55
  • Thank you. I didn’t show them to others at all — I would never do something like that or ask someone to do something like that. I just checked them after I got out and washed them off. Reason I’m asking is it somehow doesn’t feel right after I did it so just wanted to ask, if you were the TA/Proctor for example how would you see this behavior. Oct 18, 2018 at 20:59
  • Also it’s not an exam, just a normal quiz, I don’t understand why the tag shows up as exam. Oct 18, 2018 at 21:03
  • Tags have synonyms. If you use a synonym, the main tag name is what appears.
    – Buffy
    Oct 18, 2018 at 21:04

3 Answers 3


I'm going to just guess here that there won't be any problem. If there were, you'd likely have been challenged when you left the room. I'll also guess that no one even noticed.

You seem to have a decent sense of what is allowed. If you are challenged, just tell it like it happened and your thinking about what you did at the time. No one but your instructors can judge, but I think the issue is past you. Probably fine to just relax.

But note, also, that none of my statements are definitive. Too hard to make firm statements from a distance.

  • 1
    Thanks, the statements pretty much do echo what I feel about the situation, no one noticed etc., but I wanted to check with an objective third party as well. And thanks for the tips on further steps, I’ll be sure to keep that in check. Oct 18, 2018 at 21:15
  • @RosaryLightningX you should go ahead and accept this answer so Buffy gets the points.
    – Raydot
    Oct 18, 2018 at 21:33
  • @DaveKanter, actually, while I like a few points, it is good to let questions sit a bit to give others a chance to give even better answers. Oops. too late. But note to the OP, it is possible to change the accepted answer later if you see something you like better.
    – Buffy
    Oct 18, 2018 at 21:38
  • @Buffy I hear you. Just wanted to make sure that didn't go undone as Rosary is a new poster...
    – Raydot
    Oct 18, 2018 at 21:39
  • Thank you both for your insightful advice :) it gives me a lot more confidence about what to do next. Both answers sufficiently helped me with this problem and more. Oct 18, 2018 at 21:44

Also, in addition to other reasonable answers, a key point is not only to "not cheat", but to avoid any appearance of cheating, as much as anything because this distracts other students, but, yes, also because an appearance of cheating is what gets people into trouble. That is, don't cheat, and avoid small actions that may give the appearance of cheating.

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    Yes that’s exactly what I’m worried about, thank you for pointing that out. Normally I would probably pick something more smart to do like ask for a scrap paper to do rough work and ask if I can keep the paper after the test is done, but today I don’t know if I was just tired or what...and now I feel so punished fretting over something that I didn’t need to if I was upfront about it. Definitely not repeating this next quiz. Oct 18, 2018 at 21:29

If you're really worried about it than ask the TA. Simple as that. That said, if you were in trouble for this I have to believe you would have been contacted by now, so you probably don't have much to worry about. In the future it's probably best if you're not sure to simply ask what's allowed. That removes any suspicion from you right off the bat.

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    Thank you, yeah normally that’s what I would’ve done but I guess lack of sleep and bunch of midterms disrupts common sense occasionally. Probably too late to ask the TA now but thats what I’ll do for sure next time another quiz comes. Oct 18, 2018 at 21:17

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