Rise in number of cheating cases in DCU

Muiris O'Cearbhaill

A 36.36% rise in cheating cases was reported by DCU since 2018.

Dublin City University reported 99 cases of plagiarism or cheating in the university between 2019 and 2021. Out of these cases, 73 of them were upheld with four students being stopped from re-registering for their course. 

This publication reported, in 2018, that between 2013 and 2018 only 36 cases of plagiarism were found by the university. A 36.36% rise in cheating and plagiarism cases in the University has been recorded since that then. 

Other universities nationwide reported their cases which totalled to ‘at least’ 1,500 cases of cheating or plagiarism occurring across institutions since 2019.

A spokesperson for Dublin City University (DCU) told The College View that “This threat is as much to students and the value of their degrees as it is to institutions, and that is well understood by students.”

The University added they recognise “that the affordances of technology and predatory practices of illegal global cheating companies are increasing the pressures on students to cheat.”

Contracted cheating services, also referred to as ‘essay mills’, sparked headlines at the end of the last academic year after a number of students were targeted and contacted through social media. These services provide paid-for essays that allow students to pass exams.

DCU told The College View that these services are becoming a sector-wide challenge to tackle and investigate, and labelled the companies as “a threat to Higher Education institutions internationally.”

Maynooth University was the only institution to report that the use of these services were found, where four cases of students using an essay mill to cheat in their assignments. The university had over 200 cases of cheating between 2019-2021, with 11 cases of students found to be using notes during a written exam.

186 cases of plagiarism were reported to Maynooth University but no expulsions as many of the cases were “first time instances”.

TU Dublin and Trinity College Dublin had the largest number of cases, with over 1,000 cases combined. TU Dublin reported two expulsions of students and Trinity College Dublin (TCD) had not expelled any students. 

TU Dublin had 568 cases since 2019, with 33 cheating reports and 138 plagiarism reports occurring in the 2021/22 academic year. TCD reported 445 cases between 2019-2021, the university did not have figures for the 2021/22 academic year.

Muiris O’Cearbhaill

Image Credit: Original Image by The College View