AS EXAM pressure piles up, some pupils and students may be tempted to cheat . . . but DON’T do it!
Dr Gillian Mooney, dean for academic development and support at the Independent Institute of Education, said some may feel cheating is the only option left for them.
“If you cheat, you risk turning what would have remained a private challenge that could have been overcome within a year or two, into a public scandal that could ruin your reputation for life,” she warned.
Mooney said anyone thinking of cheating should do a quick Google search to see how slim their chances are of getting away with it, and to understand the dire consequences of getting caught.
“Every year, without fail, we hear about scores of matriculants whose results are held back, who face criminal charges, who are banned from writing NSC exams for years, and who spend ages in court as a result of cheating.
“Quite simply, it is not worth it. Cheating methods have become more sophisticated and no longer fall in the domain of scribbling crib notes on the back of a ruler. But if you think your teachers and lecturers are not aware of today’s tricks of the trickery trade, you are quite mistaken,” she said.
Mooney said prospective cheaters should take note that they still have time to put in an extra push and pull in extra resources to give themselves the best, honest shot.
They should also know that – if the worst case scenario of failure did come to pass –- an additional year working towards a qualification is better than living with a lifetime of reputational damage.
She warned innocent pupils and students who are not contemplating cheating to immediately distance themselves from anyone discussing it.
“Do not engage in that kind of conversation. If you do hear or see it happening, immediately report it. Often cheating happens where a teacher is complicit by, for instance, leaking an exam paper ahead of time,” she said.
She said bad results or even failure doesn’t need to mean the end of one’s dreams.
“You may just need to review your options and tweak your plans for the next few years. It may even turn out to be a blessing in disguise.” she said.