Is it better to cheat on a test and get a good grade or fail a class because you get bad grades?

I’ll always remember one of my profs (3rd year measure theory). German. And someone asked him about his thoughts on take home exams. He said he didn’t like them because people would work together, share answers, or simply look them up in a textbook so they weren’t a true measure of an individual’s knowledge or ability.

Then he went on to talk about first coming to North America and discovering that many (most?) students adhered to an honor code (or would like they think they did). A code where cheating was frowned upon. But in Germany ….

So here we are, expecting to hear him go on about how nobody in the “old country” would dream of cheating in any way. Instead we got “But in Germany there was never any of that nonsense. If it’s a choice between cheat and fail, of course you cheat.”

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