Sample Essay on why do Some Students Cheat?

When doing examinations, some students are more predisposed to cheating than others. Some of the factors that cause one to cheat are psychological while others are environmental. The psychological ones are majorly concerned with the cheat being under some duress to perform well academically. The environmental factors, however, have to do with the influence of the culture of the institution, and the behaviors of the fellow students. Reasons for students to cheat include high expectations, the culture in the learning institutions, and the environment in which the tests are taken.

First, the education system is more concerned with the results of the tests taken by the students, as opposed to the level of understanding or real life application of the content taught. The education background of a person determines to a significant degree whether they will advance in their careers and succeed in life. This leads some parents to pressuring their children to perform well in school even when they lack academic prowess (Konnikova par 8). The need to appease parents and avoid the embarrassment of being branded a failure causes the students to cheat in exams.

Second, the culture prevalent in the educational institution determines the likelihood of a student cheating in exams. There are certain environments where cheating during the tests is the norm. Despite not having the intent to cheat, the student might feel that he/she will be at a disadvantage (Konnikova par 9). This then prompts such a student to cheat. In such instances, the assertion that ‘everybody is doing it’ is used to rationalize the action of cheating.

The third reason for cheating is the environment in which the test is done. If there is minimal or insufficient supervision by the teaching authorities, then it is likely that some of the students will cheat. The lighting of the exam room has also been found to influence cheating habits. The dimmer the lighting, the more the students feel anonymous, tempting them to cheat more. If the exam room is disorganized, has graffiti on the wall and peeling paint, then cheating levels go higher (Konnikova par 4).

All in all, high expectations of the students, the culture prevalent in the learning institutions, and the examination environment are not the only ones that cause students to cheat in schools. There are many others, and they may even be student-specific. The ones listed above are the ones that are most common. They mainly stem from the societal expectations of the student and the schooling environment that the student is exposed to. The best way to curb cheating, as it is a vice, is to encourage moral development of the students at an early age.



Works Cited

Konnikova, Maria. ‘The Psychology Of Cheating’. The New Yorker. N. p., 2013. Web. 6 Jun. 2014.