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Gcse coursework cheating

Parents and teachers are to get tougher guidelines on helping pupils with their coursework, in a bid to curb cheating. Education Secretary Ruth Kelly gcse coursework cheating called for an urgent review of the use of coursework in GCSE subjects. This follows a report from the QCA exam watchdog that pupils have been copying each others’ work and downloading essays from the internet.

The report says some parents and teachers are effectively doing children’s coursework for them. Its report said there was clear agreement that things such as extended essays, projects, practical work and performances were valuable. Ms Kelly said coursework should be used only where it was the most appropriate assessment method. Parents quite properly want to play an active part in their children’s education,” she said. I am therefore particularly concerned that they are given clear guidance on what is or is not permissible as soon as possible. The rules on how much teachers could help were “limited and open to interpretation”.

In some cases so much was given in the form of writing frames, templates and checklists the report said it amounted to “coursework cloning” with little original work. There was a similar range of help from parents, guardians, siblings and friends. The report said: “The availability of the internet is a powerful aid to learning but carries a new generation of risks of plagiarism. Assignments were available from at least 10 popular websites at any level and in any subject, either free or custom-made and for sale, and “cannot be controlled”. Professor Jean Underwood, of Nottingham Trent University, is being asked to provide technical advice on detecting this. But collusion with friends was a bigger problem.

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