Nepali Times
Online cheats


At students reveal 59 different tricks for cheating and 173 tried-and-true excuses for incomplete assignments.

Alex is running short on times, just three days to go until he has to hold an oral report in biology class, and the student has yet to read a single sentence on his topic.

"Could you guys tell me something about wasting natural resources? A complete report would be best,"Alex writes to the internet homework service

Tim, a student at a state- funded college preparatory school, is even more of a hurry."Why does oxygen contain decrease as the depth of lake increase? Please help me fast, my head is bursting,"he begs .Tim promptly receives the correct answer, along with a few Internet addresses for further reading thrown in for good measure.

The biology forum is just one of several dozen German-language homework pages on the inernet."Wheather you're simply busy to complete a homework assignment, want to do some research or need help from competent teachers, we're there for you, completely unselfish and free,"adcertises, for example, www.hausaufgaben (homework). de

A total of 4,517 reports are available for downloading at The site also offer suffers a glimpse of the duller side of students life. Great works of German -language literature-such as Max Frisch's homo Faber or Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis -are dutifully dealt with in countless variations. Under the subject of English you can find the report on such perennial favourites as George Orwell's Animal Farm and J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye. A look at the reports on offer, however, reveal that the pages apparently have no quality control process in place.

"Knowledge has no prestige value to speak of anymore for young people," observes professor klaus Boeckman, a specialist in teaching methology at the University of Klagenfurt in Austria. Proud public confessions by pop culture icons like the recent one by German reality TV overmight sensation (and real -life unemployed car mechanic)"Zlatko"that he had never read anything by Shakespeare-are excellent examples of this mental shift, says boeckmann.

"The person who is considered 'smart' is not the person who has crammed his dead full of knowledge, the clever one is the one who manages to obtain what he needs just in the nick of time," says boeckmann .At least, through the homework service pages attest ot a lot of hard work on the part of the high school and university students who run most of them.

The people behind www.referate) oral exams).de were quit industrious in collecting their information, offering a neat lost of Internet sources for reports with the exact contents noted for each website.Theie so-called hotbox feature offers overwork students the opportunity to have other internet users complete their assignment for them ,or to have explained at special discussion forums.

At students reveal 59 different tricks for cheating and 173 tried-and -true excuses for incomplete assignments- most of them presumably better than "the dog ate my homework." Yet cheating and copying other people's work are not the only thing the internet-savvy kids are interested in. Tim's questions, for example, caused quite a stir in the biology forum by provoking a general debate on photosynthesis and underwater oxygen levels.

(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)