What is contract cheating?
The University defines contract cheating as getting someone to complete part or all of your assessment (hand in or exam). This includes:
- buying an assignment from a tutoring company
- having a friend complete some of your assessment
- having someone coach you through an assessment
- using a model answer from a tutoring website or social media (e.g., facebook or wechat)
- uploading or downloading lecture notes, assignments or exams to an information sharing site, e.g., CourseHero, Github, CHEGG, or
- getting someone to do your exam.
Is it serious?
The University considers contract cheating very seriously. It puts your integrity and the integrity of your course at risk. It also leaves you vulnerable to blackmail in the future, where we have seen some students being threatened with being exposed to the University, family, or future employers, if they did not pay an ongoing “fee”. The likely penalty for contract cheating is a suspension from the Uni for a semester or two.
How can you get help for your assessments?
If you need help with your assessments the best place to start is with your tutor. Ask them to clarify information you do not fully understand. If you are not satisfied with the help you are getting from your tutor, talk to your lecturer or subject coordinator about getting extra help. Tell them the websites or tutoring supports that you would like to use and ask them if it is ok. If you are in any facebook or wechat groups for your subjects, do not use any answers to assessment questions that are published, nor should you share any answers or course notes. Be aware that most of those groups have members who are contract cheaters who are there to try to make money. It is extremely likely that anytime you use sites like CHEGG, Github or CourseHero that you will be accused of contract cheating, so it is best to completely avoid these sites. If you are working with another student on an assignment only talk generally about the concepts, rather than specifically discussing the structure or content of your assignment. Do not make notes while you talk. Do not give them a copy of your assignment or take a copy of theirs.
If you have any doubts at all, explain your situation to your tutor to check if they think you are legitimately cooperating or if you would be considered academically dishonest.
What if you are accused of academic dishonesty?
SRC Caseworkers can help you to respond to allegations of academic dishonesty or academic misconduct. Start by reading our leaflet to get a better understanding of your situation, then book an appointment by calling the office on 9660 5222. The SRC is independent of the University and caseworkers will give you confidential advice.