Academic “Ghost-Writing”: The Cheating Scandal No One Will Discuss

Stewart Lawrence:

Getting a good college education turns out to be a lot easier than it used to be. It’s not that the courses have gotten any easier, but academic cheating has, and most schools seem powerless to stop it.

In recent months much of the media has focused on the high-profile college admissions scandals involving Hollywood celebrities like Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin. But that’s just the tip of the ice berg.

While getting students into prestige schools is one way parents and their children “game” the college system, it’s what they do afterwards that may be even more shocking.

I spent weeks interviewing unemployed writers and assistant professors who say they are earning a lucrative side income by writing student term papers and essays for a fee – sometimes posing as these students online and taking an entire load of semester courses anonymously on their behalf.

It turns out that academic “ghost-writing” isn’t illegal but it is highly unethical. Schools have “intellectual integrity” guidelines in place that require students to do their own work or risk being expelled.