Asian kids cheating

Hey everyone,

I wanted to do a quick rant and ask about a topic me and a lot of friends from different unis have been discussing. I'm based in a target school in the UK and I've noticed that (a lot) of students from China cheat to get into programmes and cheat during the program. They have access to entrance exams, assignments, and share everything of WeChat before it even gets realised. Other times they will pay ridiculous sums to hire people to complete their exams. Only problem is: grades are curved so these kids artificially pull everyone else down.

This happens in my programme and every programme from my school. I've spoken to other people from target schools think (Oxbridge, LSE, LBS, Imperial, UCL) and the've all faced similar complaints. I've also read news about US schools with similar problems.

 What do you guys think?

Comments (15)

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov

Slow your roll, Derek Chauvin. Remember where you are. Cheating at universities is not a race based thing. Everyone does it. In the US, frats and sororities all have massive databases of assignments, tests, quizzes, etc. What percentage of those organizations are Asian? Like 1%? Happens globally. To address your point on them paying "ridiculous sums", sounds like they have resources you don't. Get over it.

However, I agree with you whole heartedly that it's annoying to see it unfold while you (presumably) don't have access to any of these resources. I truly understand your point but bringing race into it is low. A more professional take would be to say they have created an ecosystem that is more efficient than anything anyone else has. Still, it doesn't mean others aren't doing it or they are the only ones that are. Why don't you befriend them? Take 4 seconds and learn greetings in Chinese. Someone will be open to being a friend. My advice? Ignore it - as hard as that is. They are beating you to the resource. If you're complaining about cheating as a whole, I strongly suggest switching your program to Art History. 

J.Castro, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Thanks for your comment I really appreciate the wise words. I actually worked with Hong Kong a lot for a year, I never got to go there because of COVID but I was consistently waking up Hong Kong time and I've met everyone at that office. It's a difficult topic because on the one side, they are real hustlers and do will do anything that it takes. I do respect that in some way.

However, if you've ever been in China or have really had the time to interact a lot with Chinese colleagues you know how bad this problem is. It's so bad that parents get mad at schools that actually prevent cheating because they claim "if everyone else cheats and my kids don't, they will be at a disadvantage". They don't take SAT is in China and there's a reason why.

Why does this matter? Because it affects everyone, it affects the Chinese students who are brilliant and it affects those who don't have access to the same resources. For us non cheaters it means unfair competition, specially for students from a bad background who can't afford to pay someone 1000 pounds per course to do their exams. However, it also affects the best Chinese students, because you'll always treat their achievements differently and you'll never trust them fully, even if they are brilliant. Some of my Chinese colleagues have complained about this, about how we never realise how hard unis are in China, specially if you don't cheat.

Finally, China is a huge country. Think about all the wasted talent. Education is supposed to be a meritocracy because then we can allocate the right people to the right jobs.

NewIndustryHorizon, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Ditto to this. There was a notorious frat at my undergrad that had a lot of answers to exams for pre-med classes and it was pretty hilarious when the ring got busted (some upperclassman TA whose part of that frat shared answers for a future exam with a pledge I believe and the pledge stupidly shared the answers with friends, eventually more than 90% of the class got the answers before the exam and the bio department did a full on investigation when the class average was 20%+ higher than it's historic average in previous years). Doesn't come down to race (although this was one of those S Asian frats...) because I know for other majors like engineers - some of the larger nationally recognized frats on campus had test banks that weren't made available to the average student and had at least one frat friend admit that some of these 'test banks' saved their butt for last minute final studying (aka repeat questions or very similar questions).

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Why Didn't I do a Spring Week, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I don't think they are directlyBut they can be indirectly, for example, harsher marking of a Qor if everyone finds the exam really difficult, more lax markinghave seen both sides of this

edit: this is probably a minor effect

sleepypigeon, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Well thats not grading on a curve, is it? Plus this only happens if the vast majority of students find it difficult/easy. A handful of dishonest students won't warrant it. So OP is just being assuming that his bad grades are due to "grade curving" when they probably just sit exams very mediocrely

lilgrizz, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Chinese kids were bold at my school. Was taking an econ exam once in a huge lecture hall and they would sit in the back and loudly compare answers together in mandarin as if it were a homework assignment. Professor walked up to them to give them a "warning" then nothing happened. 

PrivateTechquity 🚀GME+BBBY🚀, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I want to preface this by saying I knew of people from all ethnicities, national origins, and social groups throughout college who cheated. My intent here is not to generalize any particular group of people as cheaters while the rest are saints, because that could not be further from the truth. That said, I have never seen organized cheating on the scale that I have with foreign Chinese students from any other group. Not only that, but I don't hear about other nationalities being as frequently investigated by the US government for stealing research and passing it back to their own government (albeit I'm sure it happens).

I took a CS course in college that failed nearly 100 Chinese students for sharing a final exam, turned out the professor's TA was the ring leader and had specifically taken the position so he could then turn around and sell the test answers to the group. A similar thing happened with a completely separate group of Chinese students in one of my chemistry courses, again with a TA being in on it (and she'd apparently been sleeping with the head TA). I heard about similar instances in statistics and engineering courses taken by former roommates. As far as I am aware the only people who got expelled from the first 2 instances were the TAs themselves, so it's not like the universities actually care because they're still more than happy to keep taking the money and letting these students keep attending. Meanwhile I know of instances of individuals or small groups of domestic students cheating who were summarily dismissed from the university as soon as their actions came to light. 

It's disturbing how little universities are willing to do to actually address this disparity considering how it devalues their own degrees and is flat out disrespectful to the rest of the student body. The higher education system itself has been grossly corrupted by its addiction to cash to feed their ever growing budgets. I don't think this changes unless some sort of legislation is implemented, but I have no idea what that would even look like and frankly don't like the idea of the government getting more involved in a system they already fucked up with the student loan scam. That said, considering the larger national security implications of having anything to do with China, especially as it relates to research/information, I think there's a case to be made for some sort of action being taken. We already see plenty of other instances of Chinese nationals taking valuable publicly-funded IP/research from universities. I just don't see how this sort of thing can be fixed by anything short of a flat out ban on Chinese nationals in the university system, which I hate because one of my best friends from uni is just that.


  • 2
trying_my_best, what's your opinion? Comment below:

i can attest to this. I'm at a UK target and I see this all the time, I get rlly disillusioned at how rampant it is, plus how dismissive unis are, not just at administering exams but also in general teaching and student welfare. (My profs and tutors regularly ghost students' emails inquiring about formal matters such as questions regarding the course content. My departmental tutor ghosted me for about 3 weeks regarding an urgent matter, when he finally picked up my call he approved my request in one second without even looking at my profile/ application form. Just to illustrate how dismissive the unis are)

From my observation Chinese students are a real cult in uni (I say Chinese students not Asian students. I have no comment toward Asian students). They boldly stick posters on public uni posterboards advertising their assignment/ exam services in Chinese. Some Chinese tutors look out for them and turn a blind eye to this behavior. 

Regarding getting into the program itself, they have dedicated services in China which do this full time. My Chinese friend initially got into Columbia but didn't attend. Ask him how he got in, he said he paid the equivalent of 40k pounds to a Chinese service to settle all this. The Chinese service paid a faculty member to write this student a glowing recommendation - the faculty member never knew this student. When I asked him, how do u get hold of the equivalent of 40k pounds. He laughed it off saying 'That's nothing for a rich family in China'

He didn't attend Columbia because during Covid times the US barred Chinese students from entering their borders. So he sunk another couple thousand pounds for the service to get him into a UK uni. He just told the service, 'Get me into a good uni for STEM'. He didn't know what uni and what course he got into until he arrived in the UK. He only knew what degree he was doing the day b4 term started, cuz he just didn't need to care cuz everything was taken care of. 

He keeps bitching to me he doesn't like his course. He expected the service to get him into a good physics program cuz he likes physics, but instead they got him into a statistics program. Didn't even bother to tell the service he prefers physics

Regarding recruiting and applying for jobs, they have services too. I can't attest for London recruiting because compliance is pretty tight here, so i reckon it happens over at native mainland Chinese recruiting.

All this makes uni a very disillusioning experience as you begin to wonder what else is going on under the surface and what else do u not know. You wonder why are there people who can afford to dish out thousands of pounds a pop? Aren't Chinese kids known to be rlly studious, competitive and smart - why are they doing this rampantly? And you wonder why are unis so dismissive of student welfare and if anything is real

Theo Hernandez, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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