Poll: School - Is This Cheating?

mitchell271

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I'm in a bit of a predicament. My math teacher teaches 2 Gr. 12 Adv. Functions classes at the moment; one is a regular textbook class, the other is an iOS class. The iOS class has a pdf version of the textbook and can use any app they like during a test, quiz or exam. He also set up WiFi in that room. He also doesn't change his tests from year to year.

What this means is that the iOS class can scan tests from last year and then cheat during a test. Or if they didn't do that, they can use http://www.wolframalpha.com/ (I don't know how to hyperlink text) to look up what a function should look like or the answer to a specific problem.

What's above isn't the problem; their marks are. The lowest mark in that class is a 90. With all 3 Adv. Functions classes, the course median is 89. I'm not in the iOS class, I'm in the other class and I have a 78. I have friends who still have their tests from last year and offer them to me to look at so I know the answers/questions beforehand to boost my mark, which is kind of important because this is my last year of highschool but I refuse because I don't want to cheat.

So my big question is, is it cheating to look at old tests that are the exact same as this year's tests?

EDIT: I haven't been accepted/rejected by any universities yet, so marks are really important right now.

EDIT 2: Wow, pretty much split down the middle.
[sub]Some people's ethics are maybe too flexible.[/sub]

EDIT 3: I should clarify; it's not reviewing old tests in general, that's a great way to study. It's "reviewing" tests that are the exact same so I just memorize it and get 100% on it when I have to write it.
 

SirNerd

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May 3, 2010
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Teachers fault for using the exact same test as last year. This happens with certain teachers in my college, and if i can get someone whose taken the tests a year before, they questions are almost exactly the same. If you ask me it's studying and I don't see anything wrong with it.
 

lacktheknack

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Jan 19, 2009
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Yes. Under what's stopping you from memorizing the previous test? Try pulling this in university and see what they do.

(Hint... It involves being thrown out and academically disgraced for the rest of your life.)

EDIT: People, read the OP... it says that the previous test is EXACTLY THE SAME and the upcoming one.
 

PAGEToap44

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Jul 16, 2008
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Nope, not at all. In fact we were given and encouraged to use previous years' tests and exams to get a feel for them and to know the sort of questions we might get at the end of term.

EDIT: Obviously only acceptable at school. University's all about learning for yourself, being original in your arguments, etc.
 

fenrizz

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Feb 7, 2009
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In Norway it is standard practice to get the last few years exams for preparation.
Though they change the exam each year, for obvious reasons.

Sounds a little like cheating, but I would do it.
Perfect grades are always nice, and if you are comfortable with the material, then I see no problem with it.

Life ain't fair, so I say take the advantages that you can take.
 

Guffe

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Jul 12, 2009
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If the teacher is too lazy to change the tests and everyone knows it then it's basically the same as he would give you 10 math problems in a book and say, these are the exact problems you must solve in my test.
That's how I view it. If you want to make it a challenge and test your abilities then don't take the offer, if you want good grades do it. My math teacher used to give us his older tests a week before the test so we could se what kind of problems we might have to solve but he didn't have the exact same test.
 

DailonCmann

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School is a test of how well you can survive in the real world. To cheat and not get caught teaches you skills invaluable in corporate hierarchy. Cheat now, climb those corporate ladders later!
 

hopeneverdies

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Regardless of whether it's the exact same test, they're viewing study material during a test. Unless it's an open book exam, I'm pretty sure that counts as cheating. However, studying it before, well, it's a gray area. On the one hand, you're using resources that your teacher provides, on the other hand, it's the exact same test. However, I don't think it's fair that they can look at things like Wolfram Alpha during an exam.

My advice, look at the problems on the old test, and then change the numbers and practice the new problems you just made. It's not quite cheating if you're studying a technically different test.

You don't deserve to get a lower score than your friends because they're being provided advantages that you don't have access to.
 

uzo

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Jul 5, 2011
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My teachers back in school used to make copies of the previous year's tests and hand them out for us to practice on.

But then again, they would change the test from year to year.

If you ask me though, cheating is not something that's actually that important until university. If I could have cheated through university I would have - more time for drinking and womanising, the REAL point of higher education!
 

Smooth Operator

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Oct 5, 2010
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Jesus christ no, do not ask the teacher!
Yes it's cheating and you will get scolded before even doing anything, word of wordly advice do not play strictly by the book if you want to get anywhere in life, because noone else does.

If you want to do this by your moral compass and get the best of both sides, then I suggest you learn the material as you normally do and at the end go over the test to see if you got all the knowledge and fill in the gaps if anything is missing.
 

Dyme

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Nov 18, 2009
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Doesn't sound like cheating to me. If the teacher doesn't change his tests, he is bad teacher though.
 

BreakfastMan

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Jul 22, 2010
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Not if A: The test is different from year to year/quarter to quarter, and B: if the teacher gives you a past exam to help study. Otherwise, it should be a no-go.
 

Elivercury

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May 25, 2009
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lacktheknack said:
Yes. Under what's stopping you from memorizing the previous test? Try pulling this in university and see what they do.

(Hint... It involves being thrown out and academically disgraced for the rest of your life.)
I have studied at university for 3 years and never had an issue with this. We're given access to previous years questions to practice on for pretty much every module.

They do actually change the questions slightly/rotate picking 3-4 questions from 10 total each year though. So you can't just memorise the results and pass.

I say go for it, what do you have to lose? If nothing else, it sound like you're pretty much being encouraged to do it, and everyone else on your course probably will be. Why be lowest in the class because you were unsure if it was alright?
 

Viral_Lola

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Jul 13, 2009
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I?m just wondering why the teacher doesn?t change the test from year to year. Anywho, I had a teacher that would give out last years test as a practice test. She would use it to show how the questions could be posed, what would be deemed a complete answer, etc.
 

Daveman

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Jan 8, 2009
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Frankly it sounds like they want you to cheat. I highly doubt you telling them it was going on would change their perception. Not changing the exam is just them helping you cheat so in this rare case I'd say go ahead and cheat, because to not do so is to unfairly hamper yourself when basically everyone else is doing it and the teachers are practically encouraging it.

I mean past exams are basically the best revision so you learn the marking format and the way they will phrase questions. The fact that they don't change the answers is ridiculous. If anyone should be blamed it's the teachers. Reminds me of when we did french oral exams when one of the teachers in our school would ask the question in french and then try to mime the answer for the kids.

It's cheating, Jim, but not as we know it.
 

lacktheknack

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Elivercury said:
lacktheknack said:
Yes. Under what's stopping you from memorizing the previous test? Try pulling this in university and see what they do.

(Hint... It involves being thrown out and academically disgraced for the rest of your life.)
I have studied at university for 3 years and never had an issue with this. We're given access to previous years questions to practice on for pretty much every module.

They do actually change the questions slightly/rotate picking 3-4 questions from 10 total each year though. So you can't just memorise the results and pass.

I say go for it, what do you have to lose? If nothing else, it sound like you're pretty much being encouraged to do it, and everyone else on your course probably will be. Why be lowest in the class because you were unsure if it was alright?
So have I been given previous tests. The keyword here is "identical".
 

SckizoBoy

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lacktheknack said:
Yes. Under what's stopping you from memorizing the previous test? Try pulling this in university and see what they do.

(Hint... It involves being thrown out and academically disgraced for the rest of your life.)
... huh... IC must've been a lot nicer than where you've been to, mate... (SIC!)

Went through all of UG and PG basically studying off past exams.

mitchell271 said:
I don't know how it is in Canada, but in the UK, in pretty much every examined area, part of the revision process involves past exam papers, and a lot of schools/universities use the previous year's exam paper as a mock exam.

Personally, I'd take full advantage of it, because there is technically nothing wrong with looking up exams from prior years (so long as you don't ogle the answers during the test, which sounds to me like some of your peers are doing) and IMO, your maths teacher's either an idiot or lazy or both for not even varying his exam questions.