When the news broke that a cheating scandal had erupted at Harvard University, rumors began flying as to what would happen to those involved, especially since the alleged cheating took place in the spring. While it’s not yet clear who will face punishment, word is that the class in question–Government 1310: “Introduction to Congress”–consisted of different class levels, and some of the students involved have already graduated.
The trouble began when a teaching assistant found issues with several take-home final exams, including written answers which were not just similar from paper to paper, but contained identical wording. The assistant notified the professor immediately and the matter was turned over to the administrative board, which is reviewing the case with each student with suspected involvement…some 125 people. If a student is found guilty of cheating, they will be asked to leave the school for one year, but no reprimand has been planned out yet for any student who may have graduated since the spring.
“These allegations, if proven, represent totally unacceptable behavior that betrays the trust upon which intellectual inquiry at Harvard depends,” President Drew Faust said.
Given Harvard’s reputation for the best and the brightest, many people are surprised that a scandal of this size would touch the university, but others think that any weight behind the allegations could point to the pressure the students face to be at the top of their class.