Barnard College, the all-girls college within the Columbia University undergraduate system of four schools, has recently released statistics revealing significantly higher levels of academic dishonesty than years past.
Moreover, the number of cases is more than likely much higher than the number cited by administrators, as cheating has become a pervasive trait in many of the nation's top universities and many of the perpetrators go unnoticed.
According to a recent article by the Columbia Spectator,
Some faculty and administrators cite as contributing factors stress, improper time management, and lack of understanding of what constitutes cheating.
The majority of Barnard cases are plagiarism, Blank said. The rest included charges such as cheating on an exam, inappropriate collaboration on an assignment, and illegal downloading.
With the rise of internet, access to other people's writing and the amount of writing on a topic available has vastly increased. Older norms such as plagirism have been warped as more and more students have come to see the internet as a "free" source of words and ideas, a place where copying the work of others happens all the time as opposed to, per say, a hard copy of a book.