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Collective cheating scandal alleged at Taiwan's NTU

Students threaten, offer to bribe anonymous snitch on online forum Dcard

Students on the National Taiwan University campus. (Facebook, National Taiwan University photo)

Students on the National Taiwan University campus. (Facebook, National Taiwan University photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Discussion threads on online student forum Dcard have revealed alleged cheating during National Taiwan University’s (NTU) midterm exams, prompting the school to launch an investigation.

In a post on Friday (Nov. 26), an anonymous student accused her peers of cheating during an exam by posting a photo of students gathering together. The photo has since been deleted, while the original poster promised to report the incident to the school on Monday (Nov. 29) if the course’s instructor does nothing to punish the students.

Commentators revealed that the midterm was an online, open-book exam.

As people flooded into the comment section of the post, other anonymous students repeatedly threatened the original poster or begged her to not say anything.

“You’re all talk, anyone can talk, I bet you don’t dare say it; when I find out who’s the snitch, I’ll show you,” wrote an anonymous NTU student.

“You can try [talking], see if you’ll get a beating,” another comment read, with a winking emoji at the end.

In response to one comment that listed the surnames of the four students in the photo, an anonymous NTU student wrote, “Please delete this, what kind of classmate are you? I can kind of guess who you are, don’t let me find dirt on you someday.”

“I am one of the students featured in the photo, I am very sorry about cheating, please don’t make this big, if my parents know, I’m dead,” an anonymous NTU commentator wrote. “I did this because I didn’t have a choice, they wanted to do it, and I couldn’t say no since we’re all friends, I didn’t want there to be bad blood.”

She added, “So say it, whatever you want, I can grant it to you. Money, or grades, or recommendation letters. Anything below 1 million, if you dare ask for it, I’ll dare give it to you. Just don’t make this big.”

One commentator claiming to be the course’s teaching assistant said he will announce what measures will be taken against cheating students on Monday in class. “Basically, I’ve looked into all relevant records, and after marking the exams I’m pretty certain who the cheaters are.”

“A few test questions obviously don’t have standard answers, so to get the exact same numbers and units, or deliver identical answers in other short answer questions, that’s just asking for us to catch you,” the commentator added. “I can at least guarantee that we won’t ask all students to retake the exam, we won’t harm the good students’ rights.”

NTU Secretary-General Wang Gun-shuh (王根樹) told CNA that the school is currently investigating the legitimacy of the online rumor. If proven true, relevant information will be sent to the NTU Student Award and Punishment Committee, which will manage the situation according to school rules.

Updated : 2022-01-18 19:43 GMT+08:00