Thursday, December 30, 2004

[This post is also on my blog - here]

This post might be my attempt to be "intellectual" or something like that, cuz I usually don't pen down such serious thoughts. Most of them are more about specific incidents and not about a general idea or concept.

But anyways, this incident got me thinking... has idealism finished its term. I mean is it passe? Or are we morally/socially so corrupt that we have no ideals, and any sort of moral/ethical act seems to be a burden on us.

Consider this... a student is caught cheating in an end semester examination and he's given an F grade (ie he is failed in that course) PLUS he is also given a "semester drop" (ie suspended for one whole semester)!! Don't you think that giving the F grade was punishment enough? I mean how many times are you supposed to punish a person for one act.

I probably feel that a semester drop is too big a punishment cuz I feel that cheating is not such a big crime. Probably that's cuz of the inherent level of corruption in me. I probably accept corruption to some level. It's like a de-facto standard. It's part of the system. Anyone not corrupt upto that level is a menace for the system.

For example, if, in an exam I ask my neighbour for help - and he denies it. He's breaking the system. I'll be displeased with him. Kya, behen chod, satyawadi harishchand bana firta hai! That's exactly what I'd say.

I won't come back from the examination and think, Fuck man, I was wrong - I should not have asked him for assistance during the exam! I'm certainly not going to do that!!

Now, where am I wrong. How many people can I (or you) find who do not cheat! Hell, I mean how many professors can "cross their hearts and hope to die" and swear that they did not cheat during their student days! What makes them take this path of rigid ideology once they earn their PhD's and become professors. I'm sure even during their PhD thesis they must've machaod some fraud

That somehow bring me back to my "intellectual" point - has ideology lived its life? Is it over? Is it dead?

What do you think?

35 Comments:

At December 30, 2004 at 9:26 AM, Blogger A Good Man said...

Well, first of all thanks for thinking of writing the post. I was getting worried that people had stopped visiting the blog.

As for your post, I do agree that a sem drop is way too severe a punishment for cheating in the exam. At the same time, I know of several people who don't cheat in exams, including yours truly. I don't see it as a supremely idealist act, and it's not that I don't do immoral things, or look down upon people who cheat. I just don't think grades in a test are worth doing anything wrong. I don't think I will feel guilty if I do cheat, at least I never did when I would do it in my junior classes in school. It's not a big crime. And if I get good marks, which I rarely do otherwise, I might actually feel pleased, but it's not really worth it for me.
The definition of 'right' and 'wrong' is very subjective, though most of us don't realise that, and most students today don't even consider cheating a wrong deed. It's a natural part of the exam taking process.
I haven't thought about it much, but it could even be that I am just not brave enough to take the risk of getting caught and facing the ignominy of an F or, if the prof is an inconsiderate prick, a sem-drop.

 
At December 30, 2004 at 10:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Surprising that you feel cheating durng exams is THAT rampant! I happen to know lots of people who dont cheat. (This may be because they do not consider their neighbours worthy enough to copy from though ;)) With me its more of an ego issue than any ideal whatsoever.

- elanor

 
At February 7, 2005 at 2:21 PM, Blogger Amit Agarwal said...

hey, you got a nice collection of IIT blogs.

Amit - The Indian Blogger

 
At February 14, 2005 at 10:06 PM, Blogger Vivek Kumar said...

Hey 'Good Man'...

Can you remove me from the contributors' list for this blog.. I don't think I'm contributing anything.. and it's highly unlikely that I'll do so..

Spare me the pangs of guilt :(

 
At February 18, 2005 at 11:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Must say, a though-provoking thought....I'm new to this blod..just got here by chance, but am an IITian all right, and as far as this post is concerned i agree to a very large extent with what 'Good Man' had to say....
i believe, words like idealism and morality have no meaning unless we define it our own way, for our own selves, fully believing in that definition...It's as subjective, as it's relative...

Personally I dont cheat...I can't take the guilt of having got a better grt by copying my neighbour's answer...and so far I do not face the D-F tightrope walk dilemma, where marks are really really crucial(thank god for that:))...but I do noit have too many qualms in letting someone else copy down my answer sheet if he/she can do that effectively.....

 
At February 21, 2005 at 12:52 AM, Anonymous bhasam said...

do u ppl know that at IIT B 5 final yr students were given a year drop for so called "mis behaving ", now i wont call it ragging, with a sophie.
I know 3 of them personally and they r very nice people with brilliant academic record.
These students were not even allowed to plead their case.
3 of them were not even involved in this act but they happen to be sleeping in the next room.
So if such is the scenario at IITs, how can one be expected to be satisfied with the system??

 
At March 3, 2005 at 7:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If only you could kindly change my blog address to http://catcher.blogdrive.com

Sanket (ex-IIT Roorkee)

 
At April 6, 2005 at 1:34 PM, Blogger muskaan said...

Well.. This is the first time i am commenting on somebody's views... i usually am too lazy to take that trouble..But Seriously Buddy, just coz u have never seen somebody who never cheats in their life doesn't mean there aren't such people... I never cheated till date.. nor do i lie... i remember my mom telling me when i was in my 1st std .. that it is a lot better to get just 1 mark that is YOURS rather than getting 10 marks by cheating!! I am surprised that your mom didn't teach u the basics... I am all for the punishment..HELLO!! IF WE DO NOT DO IT NOW..THEN WE ARE SAYING THAT IT IS OK TO CHEAT .. and thats what the next generation is gonna say... sth like "My dad says everybody cheats.. and its ok to do that... so i guess it is really kool if i tried that !" and if ur basics are not right .. then evrything u do wud be a reflection of the same.. Maybe thats why India has still not reached its potential because most ppl have this "CHALTHA HEI ATTIUDE" nd that shows in everything... whether it is the pathetic state of our roads.. or the rampant bribery......

PLEASE DO NOT THINK THAT U CAN'T MAKE A DIFFERENCE .. AND DON'T DO STH WRONG JUST COZ U THINK" EVERYBODY IS DNG THAT!!

 
At April 11, 2005 at 6:43 PM, Blogger Srikar said...

Yeah I agree with you man. It's the system that compels us to do somethings with otherwise we wouldn't have done. also it's difficult to go against the system, since you yourself are a part of it ...

 
At April 20, 2005 at 9:27 PM, Blogger Divya Sagar said...

obviously luck plays a very important role! if you're having a terrible day, you're gonna get caught cheating. what about that guy in the back row who had his text book open and wasn't caught. but i guess punishments are given only to strike a balance between what you should do and what you're not supposed to do, only in order to follow the norms society has idealized. ofocurse they aren't administered appropriately or equally. so when there is a sudden surge of bad doing in a social setting a more severe punishment is imposed on the individual however petty his actions may be. its like a gruesome warning to everyone else that someone's there watching and taking strict action, although that someone is too distracted or does not want to spend enough resources to implement their punishments on all wrong doers. so what they're doing now is screw up one life and threaten the rest, thus setting a terrible example. every system should b just and fair but ofcourse thats just being idealistic. Reality is often more than mutilated. where is the frikkin value for a human life!

 
At May 16, 2005 at 10:25 AM, Blogger junkie said...

why is this blog dead?

 
At May 23, 2005 at 7:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cheating is a very sensitive topic and one which should not be lightly accepted as part of the system. Personally I am not going to say that I have never cheated/copied. I did. I got away with it too. But that was some time back. On reflection it was perhaps because it was easier that way. It wasnt because I was underprepared or that I needed to cheat to pass. Which just makes the whole thing sadder...

As far as the severity of the punishment goes, it was sleisha too much. But now whats done is done, it will serve its purpose and others will think before doing anything like this. Though it can hardly stop the thing altogether.

 
At July 24, 2005 at 6:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't cheat. Not wanting to look like a geek-loser-cum-angel in your nazrein.
That apart, cheating is very prevalent. I'm in school, and 98% of my class cheats. Sometimes people take for granted, as you did, that the person they ask will let them chhapofy whatever they're writing. Personally I feel no obligation towards my classmates to do the same, which made me pretty unpopular back in eighth.
A dude told me an answer, and I refused to copy it off from him, and I was actually told, "Gandhi kyun ban rahi hai?"

 
At August 28, 2005 at 3:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW, talk about rationalizing a cheating event... If one cheats in an exam, that person will lie (cheating is lying) to you, if one will lie to you, he/she will steal. If one steals from you, he/she is merely using you for their own convenience. Its pretty simple.

Lives by the rules

 
At September 18, 2005 at 11:21 AM, Anonymous Brad said...

The next time you are looking for a person who has never cheated (for himself) on an exam, lemme know ;) Serious.

 
At September 28, 2005 at 11:12 AM, Blogger Subash said...

Hey I am too an IITian, from IITKGP, currently 5th yr Dual. I want to contribute to this blog. It will be nice if you allow me to do so ... thanx

--Subash

 
At October 13, 2005 at 11:05 AM, Anonymous Ash said...

I don't think its too severe a punishment. Not having EVER cheated throughout my four years at IIT and still having maintained a decent CPI (GPA), I am proud to have been honest with my work. Anyone who tries to 'break' the rules (and is stupid enought to get caught :-) deserves strict action. Period. Chootiye agar cogg maarna hi thaa to dhung se maarta..

 
At February 1, 2006 at 8:22 PM, Blogger Chetan said...

Well,first of all,all i wanna say is "behenchod the system sucks".
Even how tough the system is made we have to face it.
What if our professors have cheated in their examinations,all we should care about is our careers.Why should we nagging about the things they did?
We should face it,if we make through then we would be respected well.

 
At March 9, 2006 at 11:13 PM, Anonymous nitika said...

giving an "F" and then the sem drop!! thats double jeopardy!! one person cannot be punished twice for the same offence!! :)

 
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At July 12, 2007 at 10:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have gotten the point completely wrong. Cheating is something you do or you don't. If you dont cheat, why do you have to worry about how harsh the punishment is going to be?
You want to impose a situation where it is ok to cheat because the punishment is not harsh.
Personally, and world over, it is believed that not cheating is not for you to get honest grades. More than that, it is only for you to test your understanding of the subject.
In short, you pose a ridiculous question.

 
At August 13, 2007 at 1:31 PM, Blogger isha said...

well everyone is free to have an opinion...

 
At October 6, 2007 at 1:34 PM, Blogger Abhishek said...

"Now, where am I wrong. How many people can I (or you) find who do not cheat!" That was quite a statement!!

If all the people in the world start killing each other, that won't make killing a virtue. Period.

 
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