Alexandra Petri, on the Harvard scandal of cheating, explores an option other than simple cheating. It’s about failure, it’s about collaboration, it’s about too many who don’t think it is cheating. I’ve clipped some lines from her article, so if you want full context and article — and there’s more there — go to the link.
It’s about the demise of failure.
The mark of greatness used to be failing greatly….
The stories are legion. From Bill Gates to Mark Zuckerberg, many of its most famous graduates [?] failed to graduate.
Bright students avoid challenges like the plague. Take a course where you might not succeed, just to learn something? What are you, some sort of moron? If we fail, even once, we’ll become failures….
After all, the only thing more embarrassing than taking a course where your entire grade is dependent on open-book, open-note, open-Internet, take-home exams is taking a course like that and not getting an A.
So you collaborate.
It’s just collaboration. It’s what happens when you are faced with a difficult question and the idea of doing it badly is more galling than the idea of doing it wrongly.