Is it okay to cheat at school?

Young students are much less likely to cheat than older students. Psychologists at the University of Leipzig found in long-term studies that only 20 percent of sixth graders think chipping and copying is okay. In the twelfth graders it is 80 percent.

Younger people are afraid of being caught, says study director Brigitte Latzko, 94 percent of them said they have a guilty conscience. In the course of the school career, the tendency to cheat grows. "With the twelfth graders it was expressed: They feel that it is accepted. It is a school rule that you should definitely cheat. But you shouldn't get caught."

The educators, of all people, often subliminally ensure that the willingness to cheat increases over the course of the school career, according to the expert: "On the one hand, teachers explain that cheating is not acceptable. On the other hand, the pressure to perform is often very high and subliminally it is suggested that it is okay to cheat if you don't get caught. " The educational scientist is convinced: "If a class test were used not only as a performance indicator, but as a diagnostic tool, where there are still knowledge gaps in the class that you work through together, then there would be less cheating."

Basically, it is still up to the individual teacher to determine how badly they cheat during their tests and classwork. "The students can differentiate very precisely who is more likely to look away and who is 'a sharp dog'", Latzko knows from the surveys.

The tricks are largely similar, such as notes on drinking bottles and pencil cases, notes on the hand or on the ruler. But the cell phone is also used, especially when going to the toilet: instead of cheat sheets in the quiet place, technology is used, such as the "telephone joker" in the TV quiz.