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Recent figures publicised by the Independent on Sunday, have revealed that cheating within universities is on the rise with over 45,000 students across 80 institutions having been found guilty of ‘academic misconduct’ in the last three years alone. It is, however, a problem that could be reduced by close and accurate student monitoring, says Perspective, a leading provider of learning management tools.

From the 16,000 cases reported last year, students were caught bringing crib-sheets or mobile phones into exam rooms right through to paying private firms to write essays for them, but Perspective questions whether the figures could be reduced if the students were supported closer throughout the course and helped if grades began to fall?

Paul Davis, managing director of Perspective, commented: “Tracking learner progression is absolutely vital on so many levels and in this instance, it could help reduce the pressure placed on students that subsequently leads to some of them cheating to get by. Of course there are many elements that could be the cause of a student cheating but if they felt they were supported to a greater degree by lecturers and teachers, they would be more likely to turn to them for help and guidance if they were struggling to understand a part of their degree course.”

Universities are trying to stamp out the growing issue but through means of catching cheats rather than stopping students cheating in the first instance.

Paul continued: “Huge sums of money are being spent on software that identifies plagiarised material, but with some students apparently paying hundreds of pounds for bespoke, one-off essays, the software falls at the first hurdle, and with the current climate, it’s money that could be reinvested in improving courses and facilities.

“Perspective’s student management system, Sunesis, provides users with the ability to track a learners progression in real-time, allowing for any dips in performance to be pulled into question and rectified before the problem spirals out of control.”

For more information about Perspective and its learner management products, please visit www.perspective-uk.com

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