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S/O PD Student Darwinism

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There were so many recent stories in the pd thread of student darwinism, I thought it would be fun to have one just for student stories.

I don't have any at the moment (of classmates), but figured we have enough teachers for some!

The retired physics teacher I am married to had a student claim that his copy of the test didn't have a certain page in it. The triangle of paper left when he tore the page out was left under the staple.

There is always the classic kid who was told to use a pencil on his test (not Scantron) had written on the top of his page "Reason for pen, no pencil." The person who copied his test very carefully wrote the same on his test, in pencil.

My husband also had two versions of each test, often with completely different questions in certain places and often with just different numbers in the problems. I did his typing for him and was very careful to make them look the same at a casual glance, except of course for the tiny number at the bottom that indicated the version, and there were only a few differences anyway. He caught a lot of copiers that way, and the kids learned a lesson to not try it again. (It also was nice that all the kids got to review the varying questions at review when the tests were returned.)

He also had a student scheduled to take a makeup exam after a legitimate absence. The kid came storming into the office saying that this wasn't the same test Jason had taken. Husband said "No, but it covers the same material." The student threw the test down, said, "Well! I might as well just not take the test then!" and stormed out.

There were very strict safety rules in the science department. Each student was required to bring in a copy of the contract, signed by himself and a parent. Students who violated the rules were not allowed to take the class that day. Every year a few parents would come in whining about the kid's being kicked out, so the teacher would just go to the file cabinet and pull out student's contract. He never had trouble from special snowflakes, but some kids really got into trouble with their parents for forgery.

Some girls were stooped below the desk setting pieces of paper on fire, just for the fun of it! We never did figure that one out, but it was known they couldn't work together when the Bunson burners were turned on. 

I suppose I could submit myself when I took Chemistry in college.  The teacher liked to encourage intellectual curiosity and let us make explosives if we wanted to try them out.  I figured it was no biggie if everyone was doing it and our lab tables were fire-proof.

I hope my kids never do that. 

I have many.

One which sticks in my mind was from my first year of teaching at college.  I was teaching a first year intro course and it was first semester so everyone was new to the game.  After the first essay came back, a student came to see me demanding to know why she got such a low grade (fail).  I went through the essay explaining the problems.

Me:  So now do you understand where you went wrong?
Student: Not really.  My dad wrote the essay, and he's a lawyer, and he thinks it's a good essay!
Me:  :o  I'm sorry.  Did you just say that your dad wrote the essay?  You didn't?
Student:  Ummmmm....  Anyway, he's a lawyer, and he thinks it's a good essay.
Me:  Who wrote the essay?
Student:  Silence.
Me:  Allow me to be clear.  If you wrote the essay, it is a fail for all the reasons I explained before.  If your father wrote the essay, you have submitted work which is not your own, signed an academic honesty statement indicating that the work is your own, and you will fail the essay AND also be pulled up for academic misconduct.  Which is it?
Student:  It's my essay.
Me:  Right.  (Knowing if it came to the crunch it would be my word against hers and a lot of paperwork).  You fail the essay.  Tell your father that he might be a good lawyer, but he's rubbish at (subject I teach which is not related to law).  Get out.

This is my own story:

When I was taking Computer Science at my local university in the 80's, my two best friends and I all registered at the same time (this is important).  We did pretty well in our classes for the most part, but there was one week in which we had a ton of work, and one assignment in particular that completely baffled us.  A friend of ours took pity on us and gave us the answers.  We knew that copying his work was wrong, but we were desperate, so we did it.

A couple of days after the assignments were handed in, the three of us plus our helpful friend were called into the professor's office.  When we submitted our work, you see, the computer sorted it by our student numbers.  Because we three had registered at the same time, our student numbers were all very similar. Therefore, the fact that all of our assignments were identical (right down to the errors) was glaringly obvious.  A little detective work on the professor's part found our helpful friend's assignment, and he had a full picture of what had happened.

He was very kind, though.  He said "I'm not going to get you in trouble - THIS time.  I'm going to give all four of you a zero, and if you ever do this again, we'll be having a different conversation."  We never did!


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