34 min

The Score on Academic Integrity - Eren Bilen of Dickinson College & Dr. Alexander Matros of University of South Carolina The Score

    • Education

On this episode of The Score, we're speaking with Dr. Alexander Matros, a professor in the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina, and Eren Bilen, Assistant Professor of Data Analytics at Dickinson College. Both are chess players and in their September 2020 study, online cheating, amid COVID-19, they examined the connection between cheating and online chess and the extent of online cheating in universities. The report describes how the International Chess Federation and the Internet Chess Club deal with cheating and suggests what universities can learn from that. Welcome to The Score.

Eren Bilen (05:08):

Yeah, the 2020 AP exams were the first time that these AP exams were given online because of, this was basically because of COVID. And so, what happened was this, so if you look at Google searches, and this is public information, you can just access this information, easily. What you see is this, so the 2020 AP exam for the math subject was given on May 12. This was in the afternoon Eastern time. So, we had 2:00 PM on May 12. And so, if you look at some of the keywords related to math concepts, such as derivative, integral, critical points, inflection point, things like that, you'll see a spike, exactly 2:00 PM, and then following 3:00 PM, and so on, the spike basically disappears.

Eren Bilen (06:03):

And so, the next day, on May 13, it was the English literature subject. If you do a similar study, so you check, this time instead of checking math related keywords, you check literature related keywords. So, you can do imagery, literary techniques, diction, things like that. You get the spike, exactly at 2:00 PM on May 13. This is again the time of the test.

Eren Bilen (06:29):

And then last, you can even check physics, for example, this was the next day on May 14, but this time not 2:00 PM, it was 4:00 PM in the afternoon. And you get this spike on physics related keywords at exactly 4:00 PM on May 14. So, it looks like students basically do some Google searching in order to find the answers, was this helpful? Yes, no, we're not sure, but at least students tried.

Kathryn Baron (06:57):

At least they tried to cheat. So, was this an unproctored online exam?

Eren Bilen (07:06):

That is correct. It was unproctored.
Eren Bilen (10:21):

Sure. Yeah. So, in the data, so we were quote on quote, "lucky," in the sense that we had one special tool that enabled us to basically pinpoint what's going on, what's going on? The issue was this, so we looked at the time the students took to answer their questions. So we gave them basically a test with 20 questions. And these questions were not multiple choice. So, the students had to basically enter numbers using their keyboards. And what we saw was that some of the students had very strange timings.

Eren Bilen (11:02):

So, for example, on a question that you will expect a student to take on average, let's say five minutes, the student gave an answer in seven seconds. You can say, "Okay, this is one occasion. The student just input a random number or something." That was not the case. That was the correct answer. So, for example, the correct answer was let's say 347. So, a student was able to pick that number 347 in less than 10 seconds. And this kept going and going. So next question. Similar. Third question, again, somethings similar. So, it kept on going for 20 questions.

Eren Bilen (11:40):

So, the overall time the student took to complete the exam was about 10 minutes.

Kathryn Baron (12:30):

But Eren, in seven seconds, how did they cheat, could they actually look something up online that quickly?

Eren Bilen (12:36):

So, you cannot do this in seven seconds. So, what we believe that students had was that they had the answers from other students who volunteered to take the test before they did, and they gave them the correct answers. And then you basically had a list in front of you with question names and th

On this episode of The Score, we're speaking with Dr. Alexander Matros, a professor in the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina, and Eren Bilen, Assistant Professor of Data Analytics at Dickinson College. Both are chess players and in their September 2020 study, online cheating, amid COVID-19, they examined the connection between cheating and online chess and the extent of online cheating in universities. The report describes how the International Chess Federation and the Internet Chess Club deal with cheating and suggests what universities can learn from that. Welcome to The Score.

Eren Bilen (05:08):

Yeah, the 2020 AP exams were the first time that these AP exams were given online because of, this was basically because of COVID. And so, what happened was this, so if you look at Google searches, and this is public information, you can just access this information, easily. What you see is this, so the 2020 AP exam for the math subject was given on May 12. This was in the afternoon Eastern time. So, we had 2:00 PM on May 12. And so, if you look at some of the keywords related to math concepts, such as derivative, integral, critical points, inflection point, things like that, you'll see a spike, exactly 2:00 PM, and then following 3:00 PM, and so on, the spike basically disappears.

Eren Bilen (06:03):

And so, the next day, on May 13, it was the English literature subject. If you do a similar study, so you check, this time instead of checking math related keywords, you check literature related keywords. So, you can do imagery, literary techniques, diction, things like that. You get the spike, exactly at 2:00 PM on May 13. This is again the time of the test.

Eren Bilen (06:29):

And then last, you can even check physics, for example, this was the next day on May 14, but this time not 2:00 PM, it was 4:00 PM in the afternoon. And you get this spike on physics related keywords at exactly 4:00 PM on May 14. So, it looks like students basically do some Google searching in order to find the answers, was this helpful? Yes, no, we're not sure, but at least students tried.

Kathryn Baron (06:57):

At least they tried to cheat. So, was this an unproctored online exam?

Eren Bilen (07:06):

That is correct. It was unproctored.
Eren Bilen (10:21):

Sure. Yeah. So, in the data, so we were quote on quote, "lucky," in the sense that we had one special tool that enabled us to basically pinpoint what's going on, what's going on? The issue was this, so we looked at the time the students took to answer their questions. So we gave them basically a test with 20 questions. And these questions were not multiple choice. So, the students had to basically enter numbers using their keyboards. And what we saw was that some of the students had very strange timings.

Eren Bilen (11:02):

So, for example, on a question that you will expect a student to take on average, let's say five minutes, the student gave an answer in seven seconds. You can say, "Okay, this is one occasion. The student just input a random number or something." That was not the case. That was the correct answer. So, for example, the correct answer was let's say 347. So, a student was able to pick that number 347 in less than 10 seconds. And this kept going and going. So next question. Similar. Third question, again, somethings similar. So, it kept on going for 20 questions.

Eren Bilen (11:40):

So, the overall time the student took to complete the exam was about 10 minutes.

Kathryn Baron (12:30):

But Eren, in seven seconds, how did they cheat, could they actually look something up online that quickly?

Eren Bilen (12:36):

So, you cannot do this in seven seconds. So, what we believe that students had was that they had the answers from other students who volunteered to take the test before they did, and they gave them the correct answers. And then you basically had a list in front of you with question names and th

34 min

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