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Dartmouth Students Suspected Of Cheating In Ethics Class

Jim Cole
A Dartmouth professor found a discrepancy between the number of students in a Sports, Ethics and Religion class who digitally submitted answers to in-class questions and the number of students present in class on Oct. 30.

Dozens of students at Dartmouth College are being investigated for allegedly cheating on an exam in a Sports, Ethics and Religion class.

According to an article in the student newspaper, The Dartmouth:

Religion professor Randall Balmer found a discrepancy between the number of students digitally submitting answers to in-class questions and the number of students present in class on Oct. 30. Balmer held the accused students, enrolled in ‘Sports, Ethics and Religion,’ after class on Tuesday so that judicial affairs director Leigh Remy could inform them of their rights and possible disciplinary action.

There are reportedly over 272 students enrolled in the class, and about 68 percent are varsity athletes. According to The Dartmouth, tests are administered using clickers, which allow students to submit answers to in-class questions. Those answers are electronically sent to a grade book in real time. But it is possible for students to skip class, and send their clickers with students who do attend and take the test for them.

College officials are declining to comment pending an investigation. But Provost Carolyn Dever sent this letter out to the College community today:

To the Dartmouth community, As we approach the end of fall term and the start of final exams, it is essential that we all take a moment to consider the importance of the Standards of Conduct and the Academic Honor Principle, to which all students must adhere while attending Dartmouth College. The integrity of a Dartmouth education and of Dartmouth College require a level of trust between faculty and students. The actions of a group of students for possible violations of the honor code relating to misrepresentation of class attendance and participation are currently under judicial review. No students have been found responsible for honor code violations at this time. The Academic Honor Principle is clear: "Fundamental to the principle of independent learning are the requirements of honesty and integrity in the performance of academic assignments, both in the classroom and outside." The Academic Honor Principle depends on the willingness of students, individually and collectively, to uphold standards of academic honesty. Each Dartmouth student accepts the responsibility to be honorable in his or her own academic affairs, as well as to support the Principle as it applies to others. Students should recognize that membership in the Dartmouth community is a privilege, and that certain types of misbehavior will result in temporary or, where appropriate, permanent revocation of membership. The Academic Honor Principle can be read here: The Standards of Conduct are contained here: Sincerely, Carolyn Dever Provost

Charlotte Albright lives in Lyndonville and currently works in the Office of Communication at Dartmouth College. She was a VPR reporter from 2012 - 2015, covering the Upper Valley and the Northeast Kingdom. Prior to that she freelanced for VPR for several years.
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