information wants to be free but not in my class
October 26, 2011 7:38 PM Subscribe
I've been accused of cheating on an exam, and I am in danger of losing my scholarship, but I don't think I cheated. Help!
posted by anonymous to Education (80 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
The exam was an short-essay based test. The professor gave us the case-study that the exam would be based on the night before. We were allowed to read the case as well as discuss with other students our analysis of the case the night before but would come into school and take the exam individually.
As an aid in studying, I used a syllabus from another university that had the same case-study as the exam, along with study questions ranging from the general (what is this case about) to more specific (do this calculation based on this table etc). I shared these questions with other classmates.
I go in to take the test and the test questions are the EXACT SAME questions as the ones in the syllabus from the other school. Somehow word got to the professor that I had these questions prior to the test and now I'm being punished very severely. His argument is that he explicitly told us not to "look things up on the Internet" but I interpreted that as looking up answers or papers or cases written by other people (and that this warning was mostly about plagiarism) not study questions. He dismisses the distinction and is punishing me as harshly as if I intended to actually cheat, even though I did not know that the questions were going to be the same, and everything I wrote on the test I came up with myself. I did not steal a previous years exam, nor did I have insider information that these questions would be on the test.
Has anyone encountered anything like this before? Should I appeal? What complicates things is I have this professor again in another class that is required for my major (and he's the only one who teachers this class) and he has suggested that appealing will make things harder for me in this other class.
Please, if you want more details, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org .