Teachers’ way to monitor remote learning


photo by Robert Le Cates

Teachers have adapted to using Google Classroom to teach during remote periods. Google Classroom has many behind-the-scenes additions such as an online plagiarism bot.

Even before COVID, academic dishonesty was a big problem in schools. Nowadays, with a large percentage of schools being online, teachers have to deal with cheaters on a larger scale.

“We really have to rely on students seeing the value in really learning materials, developing good study habits, and challenging themselves to do true assessments of what they are learning vs just sitting there on Google or with notes open,” science teacher Payton Cloe said. “I try my best to monitor student work for honesty but I admit I am fallible and probably have overlooked many instances of dishonesty.”

While some teachers might have overlooked student cheaters, some haven’t.

“When I see students use apps to translate their Spanish homework or solve their math problems or copy from the teachers’ edition of the textbook they found online, I wonder if they will understand later that the reason they didn’t learn was a direct result of their actions and not because the teacher didn’t teach or provide opportunities for them to learn,” high school history teacher Michelle McKinney said.

In certain subjects, students use aids like Google Translate and PhotoMath to finish their homework faster.

I cannot control students at home communicating and sharing homework or even test answers. I see students copying and pasting from Quizlet.” McKinney said. “By the way, Google Classroom lets me know if submitted homework is copied and pasted from the internet.”

To work around this new struggle of computerized dishonesty, some teachers have adapted to new methods of teaching.

Academic dishonesty has been around long before any of us were born. I rely on free responses and extended responses more so this year than years past, as students are tasked with explaining their reasoning and applying information,” math teacher Cara Gatchel said. “The respect I have for students who approach school with academic integrity will outlast the satisfaction a student has of receiving an ‘easy’ grade.”

Some teachers feel as if they are being lied to by their students when they decide to cheat.

“Sometimes I think students are so focused on grades that they forget the point of an education is to learn and to think critically. When students copy homework or plagiarize a paper, you are also lying. You are saying this is your work when it isn’t,” McKinney said. “No one likes to be lied to, ever. Cheating is morally wrong.”