It's hard to be absolutely certain in software programs. However, we are careful to give students the benefit of the doubt, and do not report cheating unless we are very sure it has occurred.
My student says that he/she did not cheat.
- Because of the caution we take, it is very unlikely that Membean has made a mistake.
- Most commonly, students will claim that they didn't cheat and then reluctantly admit that they did later.
- If the training session in question happened in school and on a shared computer, perhaps someone installed a program there that your student accidentally used.
- If the training session occurred outside of school hours, it is possible that a sibling or friend loaded the script onto the device the student uses.
- If a student notices anything suspicious during training, they should stop and use a different computer.
My student doesn't know how to program or use a script.
- Students don't need to know how to program, they just need the internet.
- A 'script' is code that plugs into the student's browser. It is relatively easy to find scripts online to do anything you want. Many students and paid professionals write them. It takes just a couple of clicks to install them on any browser.
- Students can also tamper with our code by opening up the inspector on their browser. There are Youtube how-tos that offer instructions on how to do this.
- We detect and flag both of these methods reliably.
How do you suggest we control this problem?
- Students will continue to try to circumvent the system if they believe no penalty will be enforced. We've noticed a drop in cheating when teachers show their classes how easy it is to spot.
- Please let students know that we will always find a way to detect bad training. They should not trust online programs that claim to do their training for them.
How does your cheating detector work?
- When students train on Membean, they leave electronic fingerprints behind that our system analyzes. When students employ a script or peek into code, the data that is sent back to us is subtly altered. This allows us to identify cheating cases.
- Our analogy: If there's one large visible door and one human-invisible door to a room and a user walks in through the invisible door, we know that there's something funny going on. Normal users will walk in through the large visible door. Bots use the invisible door. This allows us to mark sessions that are suspect.
Can you tell me which script a student used?
We can tell you what specific days and sessions were suspicious. We cannot tell you specifically which script was used to cheat (ask your student).