17 percent of Harvard’s graduating class admits to cheating in academics

Campus Reform Reporter

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  • Figures come from a survey of graduating seniors conducted by the official campus newspaper.
  • The school has a newly adopted honor code that will go into effect this fall.
  • Harvard was involved in a major cheating scandal in 2012, in which nearly half of a government class was investigated for cheating on a take-home final.
  • Seventeen percent of Harvard University’s graduating class admitted that they had cheated in academics during their time at the school, according to a survey conducted by the campus newspaper.

    Seniors’ evaluations of other students suggest that the actual number may be much higher.

    On average, those surveyed guessed that “53 percent of their peers had cheated on a homework assignment, 32 percent on a paper or take-home exam, and 14 percent on an in-class exam.”

    On May 6, the school adopted an undergraduate honor code—effective beginning next semester—but only 12 percent of students said they would have had a different “approach to integrity at Harvard” if the school had one.

    Harvard was involved in a major cheating scandal in 2012, in which nearly half of the 279 students in the same government class were investigated for cheating on a take-home final.

    Nearly half the 2014 class—758 students—responded to the annual survey, although some did not answer all of the questions.

    The survey was conducted from May 13 through May 20, and also covered other topics; including drinking, sex and pornography.

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter @kctimpf

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