NEW YORK |   Kessler International issued the results of a revealing new survey that shows that students are cheating frequently using a variety of methods, particularly in the face of the advent of online schools and mobile devices.

Conversely, some teachers were found to be becoming increasing unethical in the face of increased pressure to have their students perform while others have left the profession because of the pressures of universities to pass students so the income stream continues. In total, Kessler surveyed 300 students from both public and private colleges and universities, including online universities.

Relative to students, the Kessler survey found:

  • 86% of the students surveyed claimed they cheated in some way in school.
  • 54% of the students surveyed indicated that cheating was OK.  Some went so far as to say it is necessary to stay competitive.
  • 97% of the admitted cheaters say that they have never been identified as cheating.
  • 76% copied word for word someone else’s assignments
  • 79% of the students surveyed admitted to plagiarizing their assignments from the Internet or citing sources when appropriate.
  • Only 12% indicated that they would never cheat because of ethics.
  • 42% indicated that they purchased custom term papers, essays and thesis online.
  • 28% indicated that they had a service take their online classes for them.
  • 72% indicated that they had used their phone, tablet or computer to cheat in class.

Kessler’s survey also questioned the students regarding how they perceive the ethics of their teachers and professors, and the results were astounding.  Several relayed knowledge of sexual exploits of teachers with students that often resulted in adjustments to grades.  Others relayed stories of teachers taking bribes in exchange for altering grades.

Teachers were cited as pressuring students to purchase books that the teacher authored in order to complete the class.  Students also reported professors that would tell them exam answers while they were taking the test or provide the questions in advance and those that routinely graded their exams on a curve as a result of the poor results students were achieving.

Kessler’s experience in conducting background checks applicable to potential job candidates clearly shows that unethical students very often follow through in becoming unethical job applicants.  Kessler estimates that as many as one in every three job applicants lie about some aspect of their resume. These include not just harmless exaggerations, but also deliberate misrepresentations, such as claiming degrees never earned and positions never held. This trend, perpetrated by everyone from recent college graduates to seasoned executives at the pinnacle of their careers, has serious implications for companies.

One way people create a fictitious past is by claiming a degree from a university they never attended. Such fake degrees are widely available over the Internet. For a price, you can obtain either a “real” degree from a fake university, or receive a fake copy of a degree from an actual university. Sophisticated technology also makes it easy to create more realistic-looking fake documents than ever before. People also stretch the truth by claiming degrees from universities they actually attended but never completed studies, by upgrading an undergraduate degree to a M.B.A. or Ph.D., or by claiming a degree in one specialty when their degree is really in another.

About Kessler International

Kessler provides private investigation services, forensic accounting, digital forensics and business intelligence, to corporations and individuals worldwide from its offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Washington DC, Chicago, Puerto Rico, Hong Kong and London and affiliates throughout the world.

Established in 1988, Kessler’s satisfied clients are comprised of an extensive and distinguished list of Fortune 500 companies, prestigious law firms and individuals worldwide. Its diverse staff includes attorneys, certified forensic digital engineers, forensic accountants, licensed investigators and researchers. More information about Kessler’s full range of investigative services can be found at

MEDIA Contact:
Kelly Mattmuller of Kessler International
45 Rockefeller Plaza – 20th Floor
New York, NY 10111-2000
Phone: 212-286-9100 | |

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