Cheating on nursing exams - page 4

What would you do if you found out people were cheating on nursing exams? I don't mean just copying during the tests, but I've seen people share questions from the previous semester, since some... Read More

  1. by   ukstudent
    What bothers me the most is that when I commented about how some
    students are cheating, to my family and other friends outside the school, they seemed to imply that my school was too lax and probably easy to pass anway. Some said that maybe the instructors realize students will share questions and answers, but want their school to have high averages since they get funding from the govt. Or else they would change their tests every semester. I don't know if there is any truth to this, but it bothers me that people would think this way, since I don't want them to think it's so easy to be a nurse and my study efforts are meaningless.
    I can understand that the lack of respect from your family and friends about how hard nursing school is getting to you. However, even if your school kicked out everyone that had been cheating your family and friends would still not understand nursing school and it's difficulty level. Only people that have gone through nursing school will understand. You are trying to get validation from people that can't give it to you. Please remeber that schools seem to have a way of weeding out students as they go through the system. Each semester gets harder and schools want a high NCLEX pass rate that can't be achieved if a larger or even medium amount of the students are cheating.
  2. by   Jules A
    I know what you mean, in my class there seemed to be a small group of students that could get away with anything and it was almost as if the instructors were afraid to say something. The good news is that my grades and my close friends grades were better than the ones that cheated anyway. Even if they pass the boards they will not be in a position to advance like I hope to be because once in the real world they will be held accountable for their actions and being lazy will take its toll. I hope.
  3. by   cabkrun
    Quote from EDValerieRN
    I suggest not worrying about what other people are doing. If they are cheating, it doesn't really matter too much. The only test that matters is the NCLEX, and they can't cheat on it. Really they are only doing a disservice to theirselves. I know it isn't fair.. but remember karma.
    The instructors should really vary their questions from semester to semester to prevent this type of thing. Ours did, and people still found a way to cheat. The thing is, the one that cheated a lot still hasn't passed NCLEX, and that was over a year ago.

    Sorry, I disagree. I surely wouldn't want someone taking care of me that cheated all the way thru nursing school. It's like the recent NYT article about Phillipine Nurses cheating on their exams in order to come over to the US as nurses, and people dismissing it by saying "well, they still have to pass the exam over in the US". There are a ton of prep courses out there that you can take and prepare for to pass NCLEX. Someone might cheat all the way thru school, then spend a good amount of effort to study and pass NCLEX. Not the same kind of nurse IMO. It does a huge disservice to the profession, and it's a lazy instructor that doesn't change the exams. On the flip side, people cheat ... no matter what profession, but it doesn't mean it's right, and KARMA doesn't always prevail.
  4. by   MiaNJ
    [QUOTE=Jules A]I know what you mean, in my class there seemed to be a small group of students that could get away with anything and it was almost as if the instructors were afraid to say something. The good news is that my grades and my close friends grades were better than the ones that cheated anyway. Even if they pass the boards they will not be in a position to advance like I hope to be because once in the real world they will be held accountable for their actions and being lazy will take its toll. I hope. [/QUOTE

    I hope so too. When I say all this cheating bothers me, some people seem to think I'm either envious of the cheaters' high grades or I wish I could also get access to the questions ahead of time, or I'm jealous that I had to study. But none of that is true, since I do get good grades and don't need to cheat, and I also want to study since I want to learn all I can. How would I feel good about a high grade that I didn't put much effort into getting? It's not the same to memorize questions and answers, than to read almost an entire book and understand more nursing process.

    I think it's sad that some don't understand the real ethical dilemma here, and what it could mean to nursing profession in general.
    If students can find it easy to cheat, and more start to do it, even at other schools since I read and heard it happens elsewhere also, even out of the country (check out the Phillipine nursing student cheating scandal), then eventually the general public will to think that most nurses are not competent professionals, since there are so many incidents of students cheating. If a person likes to cheat in school, what makes them not want to cut corners at work?
    Of course there will always be good honest nurses, but people can start to form stereotypes.

    When I got into nursing, I read that it's the most trusted profession, and it would be sad to see this reputation dwindle as time goes on. I don't mean because of what is happening in my class, but since it happens elsewhere, things can start to get worse, and students cheat more, etc. etc. Then more gossip about nursing students get started, how many are lazy, etc. The good students who get high grades from studying, will suffer since people will not be able to know who are the cheaters, if everyone gets very high grades, since some are cheating.
  5. by   BarbieBrains
    Quote from firstyearstudent
    Cheating does affect everyone. It seems likely that some students in our class cheated on an exam and the entire class suffered from the bad feelings and association when it came to light. There were some students who had a great improvement on the same exam because they had studied extremely hard -- and they fell under suspicion (it was sad). I was personally hurt because I stood up to the instructor and vouched for all my classmates, only to find out later that it is likely that people did cheat. Now I no longer trust or have faith in the honesty of my classmates.
    I think the original poster has a legitimate reason to be concerned about students cheating in her class. There was a recent cheating incident at my college during the summer semester. Even though eventually most of the cheaters have been identified (including the ringleader), initially every single student in our entire class was placed under academic probation because the nursing administration couldn't differentiate the honest students from those who were dishonest. As stated, cheating in nursing school has a way of affecting everybody in the classroom. It may not happen now, but sooner or later it will cause major problems.
  6. by   HM2VikingRN
    I think that schools need to take a zero tolerance approach to cheating. Integrity is a core value of Nursing and I don't want to risk either my career or patients safety by working with a liar and a cheat.
  7. by   MiaNJ
    Quote from BarbieBrains
    I think the original poster has a legitimate reason to be concerned about students cheating in her class. There was a recent cheating incident at my college during the summer semester. Even though eventually most of the cheaters have been identified (including the ringleader), initially every single student in our entire class was placed under academic probation because the nursing administration couldn't differentiate the honest students from those who were dishonest. As stated, cheating in nursing school has a way of affecting everybody in the classroom. It may not happen now, but sooner or later it will cause major problems.
    That's so sad, what happened to your class. It's simply not fair. When people say look the other way or 'don't be concerned about cheating' and 'worry about yourself', they don't realize that cheating can and will eventually affect everyone in some way.
  8. by   MiaNJ
    Quote from HM2Viking
    I think that schools need to take a zero tolerance approach to cheating. Integrity is a core value of Nursing and I don't want to risk either my career or patients safety by working with a liar and a cheat.
    That's my point exactly. Even if professors don't actually see the students cheat, I'm certain they do realize that students can remember questions and provide them to their friends. If the prof. does it so they can look good when most students score high, then it's a shame.

    Even those nurses who did well in school and studied hard, may eventually lose credibility if people will start to wonder if they cheated all along in school, if they continue to hear rumors about how nursing students cheat in schools. It happened in the Phillipines recently (was in the news), where some students were caught cheating on their licensing exam and then All students were punished and had to take the test over again. Even if they do pass, they can eventually be viewed in a bad light and people will not be as trusting of nurses in general.
    I agree that nursing is about Integrity, and if people start to find out how easy students can cheat in nursing school, they may also wonder if they can cheat on the NCLEX, which may be possible according to the article below. It's not about nursing specifically, but it's pointed out that it can happen in any health care licensing exam.


    http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/03215/208353.stm
  9. by   Agnus
    Quote from MiaNJ
    They may have learned 'something' but I don't think learning nursing by remote memory of questions and answers truly will make a good nurse.
    I did not say it was right. But I doubt that porfessors believe this does not happen.

    And as far as memorizing questions. You are very correct in saying that it takes more than that to learn nursing. It also takes more than that to pass the NELEX. IF all you did to get through school was to memorize test questions you would not have what it takes to pass the NCLEX. There is not way you will get those questions and the answers to memorize. These questions are based on critical thinking. That is why occasionally a student will say the NCLEX was a surprise and the questions "were not anything I learned in school." Actually they were what you leanred in school but to answer one question you have to draw on knowledge from several different sources, and aspects of what you learned, and be able to apply it.

    The NCLEX will be the telling. And the cream will indeed rise.
  10. by   mercyteapot
    We've had similar conversations on these boards many times. I am in the ''stay out of it'' school of thought. Professors have been through school themselves, so they should know very well how important it is to change up tests so that their students aren't able to cheat this way. More likely than not, telling them is just going cause you nothing but grief.
  11. by   goats'r'us
    IMHO, what you describe isn't cheating. previous exam papers were a readily available study aid where i went to school, and if the teachers didn't bother to change the exam between years, then that was their problem.

    i think it's ridiculous to show exam questions and say 'don't write this down'. that's like placing the exam paper in front of everyone and saying 'hey! this is the exam paper. i want you all to read this, but don't you dare remember it'.

    i would have no problem taking down the questions and answers, and i'd have no problem with anyone else doing it either.
  12. by   goriodel
    "It's scary that it's also happening in other schools. But how do we know for sure if these people can't find a way to cheat on the NCLEX? I had read some posts a while back about people sharing questions they remembered from NCLEX. Of course not everyone will get the same questions, but it's possible to have groups of people join together and share their questions, and eventually form a large collection of exact questions. At least some of those may be encountered on the NCLEX. There was an incident like recently that in the Phillipines, where a group of students were found to have cheated on the licensing nursing exam. It was a big deal on the news, and some people want the nursing school where these students attended to close down." As mentioned in this message, we had a very big national issue regarding the most recent Nursing Licensure Exam in here. It has really grown in such a huge story, that it has been occupying prime spaces on the national broad-sheets and prime-time TV news and even talk shows almost everyday. The saddest part of it all is that, it has practically put the lives of hopeful individuals in limbo, not knowing what will become of them or to the fruition of their life-long dreams and aspirations of someday becoming a duly licensed nurse, as the whole Licensure Exam altogether is being contemplated to be disregarded and a new exam be administered. Yes, thanks to the callousness and blatant inpropriety of a few "bull-hearted" individuals (students) (in connivance with other equally dishonest and "enterprising" school, review center officials and (yes) the national nursing association officials-all boils down to business and bragging rigths of producing a big number of RNs from their own institutions, which will yield more money eventually). Just a clear example why cheating or being dishonest is a bad, bad thing to do. It's like a sweet fresh banana or apple or even freshly baked pecan pie, nice and appealing at first but eventually will stink like a filthy garbage after a long while out in the open. Of course even innocent individuals like who really toiled, worked and "burned their eye-brows" to learn and pass the Exams would have to suffer. Their efforts came to naught and their sweet dreams and ambitions into a pffft. As of late, even us, RNs who took the Local Boards way ahead could be "tinted" and looked upon, disdained if you will by the whole world, and tagged as nurses coming from a country of cheats and of callous morality. That's farthest from from the truth. God forbid. Because there are more or most who did it the right way, and to generalize this uneventful, sorry "adventurism" of a handful is way uncalled for. There's no way to do it but the proper way.
  13. by   RN-Diane
    I knew people in nursing school who never did one thing by themselves. Every quiz, worksheet, careplan, ect. was a group effort. They cheated themselves through all of nursing school. They all passed NCLEX, so as for the whole sorting out thing....not sure. You can still learn plenty when you cheat, but it is still cheating. I am just glad that I do not have to work with any of them because they will probably need their hand held just to clock in.

    Anyway, I think Lilpeanut made a good point. When there is any sort of "cheating patients" going on in the workplace, it is important to report it. It is very scary that these students are in clinicals with patients. I also think it is sad that we are the #1 (I think) most trusted profession, but there is so much lying and cheating going on. If everyone knew how some people got through nursing school, we probably would not be as trusted.

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