There are reasons why an instructor gives the assignment to be done individually. They include enhancing responsibility in the learner, improving thinking and memory, way of revising what the teacher has taught in the classroom, enhances time management skills, etc.
Therefore, copying homework is a way of earning a good score, but the student fails to gain the required skillset (i.e. time management, responsibility, self-initiative and critical thinking).
In this blog we answer a commonly asked question: is copying homework cheating?
Is copying homework is cheating?
Essentially, copying homework from another student or from previously completed works is cheating.
Cheating in homework can be in the form of someone doing the student’s assignment without any contribution from the learner, copying the work of another student or referring to the answer booklet
Why do learners copy homework?
Some of the reasons learners copy homework include;
- Poor time management skills. If a student is poor at managing time, they will focus on other activities such as playing and forget to handle homework. They end up copying the work from another student.
- To get a higher grade. It is common in students who are often under-achieving.
- Laziness. A lazy student finds it more appealing to copy homework instead of doing it themselves.
- Lack of confidence.
However, there is no justification for copying homework, and if by any chance your instructor catches you, expect severe consequences.
Is getting help on an assignment cheating?
No, getting help with your assignment is not cheating.
Assignments help the student to get in-depth knowledge about the subject. Therefore, it is not a surprise if you find unfamiliar terms and questions in your homework.
If the assignment proves to be difficult, it is not against the rules to get help. It is not logical to fail your work, whereas it is legal to ask for help.
How do you get help with your assignment?
First, hire an expert to help you out. An expert has vast knowledge and experience in that particular subject.
They will, therefore, do their research well and explain all the points in a manner the student understands them and also learns in the process.
The expert could be a private tutor, a student that is on a higher level or a freelancer. The advantage of hiring a homework help expert is that they are affordable, and they guarantee quality services.
Secondly, form a group with your colleagues and solve the questions together. All the students must contribute to the discussion so that everyone learns.
Many instructors encourage discussions because they help the students to express their ideas. They are beneficial to learners who are shy in the classroom.
Is letting someone copy your homework cheating?
Letting someone copy your homework is cheating.
Letting someone copy your work means that the student did not have the initiative nor the time to do the assignment themselves.
If your colleague tells you that the homework was difficult for them to handle, let them show evidence of where they tried to complete the work.
If they fail to show it, and you let them copy your work, then you are guilty of cheating too, because you have aided in the process of cheating.
Allowing someone to copy your homework promotes laziness among students. A student is likely to take advantage of you each time the instructor gives work.
They will fail to do the assignment because they already know they have someone who lets them copy theirs.
If a student copies homework from a classmate, the instructor is likely to know.
The work looks the same. For example, where two learners have the same wrong answers. Allowing someone to copy your homework is unethical.
You will be both found guilty of cheating, regardless of who copied from who, and the consequences may be severe.
If the assignment is individual, do not let someone else copy your work. It is that simple.
Also see: Is Cheating Bad In College?
What happens if someone copies your assignment?
All learning institutions have rules and regulations governing the conduct of students. They restrict students from cheating in assignments.
If someone copies your homework, it is a direct way of cheating, and there are dire consequences. The probability of getting caught is very high because it is easy to know copied work.
Consequences of copying assignment
Assignments are submitted to gauge the learner’s understanding of the subject, and the penalties may not be severe.
The instructor can choose to fail you in that class, and you would have to repeat the coursework the following semester/term.
However, this is inconvenient because you will waste precious time doing the same subject all over again. Additionally, your peers will be ahead of you, and they may even graduate before you.
In some institutions, copying assignment is strictly prohibited. If you cheat and get caught, you get suspended for a particular duration.
It could range from one term to several years. The suspension is highly inconvenient for you because you will be away from school while your fellow students are learning.
You will lose significant time, and you will lag in terms of syllabus coverage. Catching up with the rest will be tedious.
The likelihood of never catching up is high, and you will complete your course after the others. The workload also increases as you have to juggle in between classes.
The instructor may also choose to omit the marks for that assignment. You will have to be lucky, that the instructor is not strict enough.
However, when the instructor excludes scores, it has a long term effect on your overall grade. The subject grade will be low because of the missing score.
You will pass the class, but your overall performance will be affected. For example, if your target for that semester is to achieve an average score of 70, it becomes difficult as that subject pulls down the other grades.
Maintaining balance becomes a problem.
More work for you
Getting more work to do from your instructor if you are guilty of cheating is common in various institutions.
The instructor disregards the first assignment and gives you something different to do. The homework is often a workload that requires your commitment.
You, therefore, dedicate much of your time completing the assignment. Time is a precious commodity, and this could prove to be an uphill task to accomplish, especially in cases where you have other subjects to handle.
However, it is a small price to pay, considering you committed an offence.
Remark on your transcript
Your instructor may attach a review on your transcript, indicating that you copied or assisted someone else in copying your assignment.
It has an impact on your future endeavors as no one will want to associate themselves with you. It could have an impact on your chances of landing a scholarship or a job.
Copying assignments is not as severe as cheating in examinations. Therefore, it is not likely that you get expelled. However, some institutions are strict, and if by any chance the assignment was part of the coursework, you could get an expulsion.
It is smart to avoid cheating in school. It could be copying work, or aiding in cheating by sharing your work. The consequences are severe, and you should try your level best to avoid them.
If the assignment proves to be difficult, there are efficient ways to deal with it, like asking for guidance from your instructor. If someone copies your work without your consent or knowledge, report it as soon as possible.
My friend copied my assignment: am I in trouble?
Yes, you are in deep trouble. Allowing your colleague to copy your work is unethical and illegal. Let them take responsibility and complete their assignments.
However, if you let them copy your work, then that is cheating, on your side and theirs. Of course, you will have to get caught, but why risk suspension or a failed class because you let someone copy your work?
On the other hand, there are cases where some learners copy assignment, without the knowledge of the other student.
If this happens, explain it to your instructor and provide evidence to show you did the original work.
It could be where you did your rough work. It is also essential that you keep your work safe to prevent this from happening.
Also see: Is using google translate cheating?
Is giving someone answers cheating?
Yes, giving someone answers is a form of cheating. You may have completed the assignment by yourself, but giving answers is enabling cheating.
Look at it this way, by failing to give someone answers, they are likely to do the homework and find the answers themselves.
On the other hand, if you give them answers, they will not bother doing the work. They score undeserving grades. It is outright cheating.
In some cases, having only the answers does not guarantee the student a good score because the instructor will be looking for the descriptions and analysis.
Therefore, if the student only submits the answers, the instructor will know that they are cheating.
Is sharing homework cheating?
Yes, sharing your homework to help someone who has not completed theirs is cheating.
It is a common practice among students where they form secret groups to do the assignment. Forming group discussions is not wrong, but if everyone is not contributing, then it is unethical.
For example, students may form a group where if one student completes the assignment, they share it to the group for the rest to copy. Both the student who shared the homework and the ones copying are guilty of cheating.
However, after the students have submitted the assignment and it is graded, they can share the work among themselves. It broadens their understanding of the subject.
Is copying homework cheating? We dig deep and find out that indeed copying homework is cheating. Avoid it as it might lead you to deep problems with your instructor.