UCLA Professor: Why I Let My Students "Cheat" On Their Exam

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UCLA Professor: Why I Let My Students "Cheat" On Their Exam

Postby *-* » April 26th, 2013, 3:33 pm

Article here. Not sure if this is legit or not, but I looked it up and got a couple results so I'm assuming it's true. The word "cheat" in the title could've been replaced with a more suitable one though.

TL;DR for the people who don't like reading:
A week before the test, I told my class that the Game Theory exam would be insanely hard—far harder than any that had established my rep as a hard prof. But as recompense, for this one time only, students could cheat. They could bring and use anything or anyone they liked, including animal behavior experts. (Richard Dawkins in town? Bring him!) They could surf the Web. They could talk to each other or call friends who’d taken the course before. They could offer me bribes. (I wouldn’t take them, but neither would I report it to the dean.) Only violations of state or federal criminal law such as kidnapping my dog, blackmail, or threats of violence were out of bounds.

- Professor Peter Nonacs of UCLA set up his Behavioral Ecology exam allowing students to "cheat"
BASICALLY: They could use the internet, their classmates' opinions/ideas, their notes, bribery @ the prof, almost anything. Except blackmail/threaten him.
- The majority of his students (the "mob") wrote their exam together, and chose to share their grade
- 3 students (the "Lone Wolves") stayed out, and listened to the mob's ideas, but wrote their own answers
- The professor set the exam up like this so his students "learned what social insects like ants and termites have known for hundreds of millions of years. To win at some games, cooperation is better than competition. Unity that arises through a diversity of opinion is stronger than any solitary competitor."
- The mob's final grade was much higher than the professor's old midterms averages
- 1 lone wolf was above the mob, 1 at around the same level, 1 below the mob
- Using Game Theory, the professor was able to make his students play the role of behavioral ecologists

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I noticed in the comments of a lot of similar articles saying this has been done before, but I thought it was cool so /post. ;GrinP. I wish I could try something like this though, sadly the subjects I prefer revolve more around calculations so it'll probably never happen xD. I saw this in my Facebook news feed with a friend wishing all his exams could be written like this, sadly that'll never happen ;Spy..
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Re: UCLA Professor: Why I Let My Students "Cheat" On Their E

Postby Kraft » April 26th, 2013, 4:08 pm

that was an interesting read
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Re: UCLA Professor: Why I Let My Students "Cheat" On Their E

Postby Jackeh«3 » April 26th, 2013, 5:10 pm

Read this a while ago too. I think the professor is just nuts.
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Re: UCLA Professor: Why I Let My Students "Cheat" On Their E

Postby Hmm » April 26th, 2013, 5:27 pm

That. Lol. ^
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Re: UCLA Professor: Why I Let My Students "Cheat" On Their E

Postby tgfcoder » April 26th, 2013, 5:47 pm

Eh, I think it's interesting that some people are taking alternate methods to try to inspire or encourage students to try harder. Maybe if students think that this "cheating" (really it's just studying) gives them an advantage, it might actually convince them to learn something when they would otherwise be like "Meh, it's just study"

Dunno if the ends justify the means though, ;haha i.e. is it ethical, will they carry on and try to "cheat" in other aspects of their life, etc.? Idk.
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Re: UCLA Professor: Why I Let My Students "Cheat" On Their E

Postby Paukky«3 » April 26th, 2013, 6:08 pm

It's not really cheating if the prof said it's allowed, but it brings the click and interest. (same thought from the article comment) ;Mkup

The article reminds me of this video. (I showed it on Rb forum before)



For some reason
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“Wisdom isn’t something your're born with. You stumble upon it and become it. Those who see it must not reach, for it will come to you.”
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Re: UCLA Professor: Why I Let My Students "Cheat" On Their E

Postby *-* » April 26th, 2013, 8:41 pm

@Paul my computer science teacher showed me that video before LOL... He said he didn't have the time to teach like that though :c

I just remembered I had a test similar to this in the 8th grade, my quarter of the studying (groups of 4, 1 test on 8 chapters I think) was the easiest & I never learned the other 3/4 of the 8 chapters so in that way it wasn't helpful but I feel like the discussion & work put into the ucla exam would've been more helpful for me. I learn from mistakes so if someone told me 'no you're wrong b/c ...' I'd probably learn it ;Pray.
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