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Internet Cheating on the Rise

By: Paige Lambrecht
By: Paige Lambrecht

Cheating in school used to consist primarily of writing answers on your hand or looking over your neighbor's shoulder during a test, but technology has given way to a whole new way to cheat.

Local teachers say they've seen the number of students who use the Internet to cheat. Students are either buying term papers online or simply cutting and then pasting entire paragraphs from the Internet on to their papers, and it's not just those students that are struggling in class.

"We find just as many top students do it probably out of pressure to make good grades," says Stephen Schmidt, a science teacher at Wausau Newman High School.

Teachers say they still encourage students to research online, but apply it to their own original work.

Nolan Beck is the director of student services at UW Marathon County. He says, "It's not inappropriate to use the information, but it's how you use it. We want them to use it in the proper way.”

That's why both Wausau Newman and UWMC have written ethics codes and cheating guidelines, so students understand exactly what constitutes plagiarism and how serious it is.

Teachers want to emphasize that even though cheating is on the rise, it's still a small fraction of students that don't do their own work.