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Thread: Ethics Dilemma

  1. #1

    Unhappy Ethics Dilemma

    This is one of those, "What would you do if...?" scenarios. Here's the situation.

    I'm currently enrolled in a series of courses for technical certification. (Which shall remain nameless.) This semester is particularly difficult, and many people in the class have been struggling academically.

    Somehow, and I didn't ask, nor want to, someone in the class got ahold of a copy of the final exam.

    Here's the options.

    1. Take the copy, revel in my good fortune and get an A.

    2. Refuse the copy, ignore the situation.

    3. Refuse the copy, report the class.

    4. Dunno, I can't come up with any other options.

    Now I already refused the copy. Personally I figure I've worked this hard to get this far, I'm not taking the cop-out way now.

    The dilemma is between 2 and 3.

    If I report the class, they get in trouble, maybe even kicked out of the courses/flunked. I've gotten to know them pretty well and don't want to do that to them. I'm the only one I know of that refused the test, so it would be fairly obvious who tattled.

    If I don't report:

    a. They all get 100%, nothing happens.
    b. They all get 100%, the company investigates why a class that's been collectively getting 60%-70% on exams just "suddenly" all happen to get 100%. Everyone, including me, goes down for cheating. Even if they defended me, and said I didn't take it, I still didn't say anything. I've gotten to know them pretty well, but not enough to want to take a fall with them for something I didn't do.



    Read them.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Hrmmm, this does indeed sound like a tricky situation.
    It's just my paranoia playing up now, but are you sure that it wasn't left for people to take on purpose? Almost like the tutors checking up to see how many people would cheat...
    My advice would be to send an anonymous e-mail to the head honcho for your course, explaining what has happened.
    And surely other people would have refused it... Surely?
    I\'m drunk, and right now I\'m so in love with you.

  3. #3
    Old Fart
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Anonymously let the instructor know that a copy of the final exam has been leaked, explain that you are the only student who refused a copy and ask him to change the final exam. Do so in a manner that will allow you to identify yourself if needed (sign it "Rasputin" or something unusual). I know that the thoughts of an easy 'A' are tempting, but the risk to your reputation and potential career choices is far too serious to even consider taking the easy way out on this one. Just a thought, and if someone else has a better way to handle this, by all means say so.
    It isn't paranoia when you KNOW they're out to get you...

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    If you've already decided to refuse the test then I would let the professor know that the final exam is circulating throughout the class. You're right when you say that everyone's grades will mysteriously increase if the class has been getting 60-70% in the past. That will look very suspicious and I don't think that the professor will overlook such a BIG change. That means you will have to take the test again. If you let the professor know now, he will write up a new test and this will avoid all of the class having to take the test twice. It will save you time. You're in the class to pass and you've already proved your honesty by not getting a copy of the exam. Now be honest with the professor and let him know what's going on. Who cares what everyone else thinks. Cheating will get them no where and if you do not tell your professor, you are providing an easy way out for your classmates when you have worked hard for this class.
    \"When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist.\" -- Dom Helder Camara

  5. #5
    Old-Fogey:Addicts founder Terr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Seattle, WA
    Take number 3, but don't finger a specific person, and request anonymity. I mean, if average scores suddenly explode, you don't want to be known as one of the people who 'went along with it', do you? I think it's more likely to be found out, than not, if the test copy is circulating so widely.
    [HvC]Terr: L33T Technical Proficiency

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    i mean if your really talking ethically what you should do its number 3.... because that IS the ethical choice.... and you seem like an ethical person otherwise you wouldnt of worried about it or posted it on here....

    go ahead and report the class, like terr said dont specify who or what just tell them that you know theres a copy goin around and u dont want any part to do with it.

  7. #7
    Developer Extraordinar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    I'm going to agree with Chilied, send an e-mail anonymous, don't give out hints to who you are, tell them what is going on, and as Chilied said other people must have turned the exam down. And if someone sapects you just tell them they were the ones that were going to Cheat, or say it wasn't you. Just my opinion.

    Come to UnError.com

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Number 3 for sure.

    I'd have to agree with letting the prof know it was you that reported it but asking for anominity as far as the rest of the class goes. This way the prof knows that you are trying your best to get your grade, and he/she will respect you for coming forth.

    Hopefully others in your class will have done the same.

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    It is good to see that you refused to look at the exam. IMHO, I would do exactly what everyone else has said.

    Anonymously let your lecturer that the final exam has leaked. Dont specifically mention any names, just bring it to his/her attention. Hopefully he/she will change the exam and all those people who cheated will bomb out, while your grades soar!

    Good luck!

    [glowpurple]There were so many fewer questions when the stars where still just the holes to heaven - JJ[/glowpurple] [gloworange]I sure could use a vacation from this bull$hit, three ringed circus side show of freaks. - Tool. [/gloworange]

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    You have to think.Yes,the you'd ace the exam,but to the negative consequences balance the positive.Lets say nobody ever even investigates why the whole class aced it,and everything works out for the better.Then you're going to go out into the work field not knowing some of the stuff you need to know.So even if you don't learn the stuff for the test,you're eventually going to have to learn it anyway.Why not do it when you have the advantage of having instructors,tutors,and the various materials available to you through your school to make learning easier.
    [shadow]I don\'t believe in anarchy.If you\'re not smart enough to beat the system it\'s your problem. [/shadow]

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