Best Ways to Cheat in College

Posted by Professor Cram in Good Study Habits

As both a student and professor, I have seen the variety of ways students have tried to cheat their way through college. Which ones work the best, and which aren't worth your time? Let's take a look below…

Your accounting professor might describe cheating as "unbalanced," while your college algebra teacher might say it "doesn't add up," and your theology instructor might simply say "cheating is wrong, wrong, wrong." I've always defined cheating as "Getting a favorable outcome without expending the same effort everyone else does."

Here are some popular cheating approaches, including the dead-ends and the ones that actually work:

Copying homework – In grade school this was the lowest of low tech; you met with somebody in the schoolyard and physically wrote down their answers on your paper. These days, a ton of websites advertise their vast store of essays and term papers on a variety of topics that they are willing to sell to the unsuspecting student. The reality is that most of these websites have the same materials (are they copying them from each other…?) and that almost all instructors are aware of them. In fact, there are a growing number of "counter-copying" websites that will check your submitted work and let the instructor know if you are guilty of plagiarism.

Verdict: If the favorable outcome you were chasing is getting a failing grade, you could have turned in a blank sheet of paper and saved yourself some money.

Computer hacking – OK, the movie "War Games" was made like 20 years ago, right? These days, college computer networks are big-time systems managed by a host of computer professionals. Security software monitors access to vital parts of the school network, and databases are equipped with password protection and data encryption. Sure, sometimes somebody screws up and a data-encrusted laptop goes missing, but while that could net you some social security numbers it doesn't help you change your grade. This approach was never that realistic back when the movie was made, and even less so now.

Verdict: If your favorable outcome is getting thrown in jail, there are easier ways to accomplish that than hacking into the university computer system.

Cheat notes – This was popular when I went to high school. We'd write definitions… I mean, other kids would write definitions on tiny pieces of paper and sneak them into the class during tests. The trouble was, half the time you couldn't read the tiny handwriting and you'd end up copying it down wrong. The other half of the time the teacher would catch you and you'd flunk the test. Of course, college work is much different than high school – the papers would need to be bigger and the writing even smaller still. I never encountered this one myself in college, but having seen lots of other high school behaviors from some college students I don't doubt there are some who still make the attempt.

Technology can help this one, though. Replace the tiny papers with a PDA or cell phone and you can have legible notes in a small item commonly found in classrooms. Unfortunately, most instructors require that students put these items away during tests, and in those cases tiny papers are much easier to hide than a fist-sized electronic device.

Verdict: The odds are against you here, so if your favorable outcome is a failing grade then go for it.

Well, we've pretty much shot through the traditional cheating methods. So what really works? What are Professor Cram's recommendations for how to succeed in college by cheating? How do college students get a "favorable outcome without expending the same effort everyone else does?" Here you go:

You'll end up spending far less time and learn a lot more about yourself and the world around you.

Good studying,
Professor Cram



17 Responses to “Best Ways to Cheat in College”

  1. fail says:

    Wow…. u suck.

  2. mitchelle salubre says:

    Good day!

    this is mitchelle salubre. i am a nurse taking up masteral in nursing. i have a research proposal about cheating in college. the title is: perception of liceo de cagayan university nursing community towards cheating. this study would help the school in taking better actions towards cheating. i am intersted with your article.

    I would greatly appreciate it if you may spend a bit of your time to comment or criticize my research proposal.

    thank you so much.

    Mitchelle Salubre, RN

  3. Professor Cram says:

    I guess you were looking for actually ways to cheat, huh?

  4. lawl says:

    Yea you are a complete idiot. The title of your article is misleading. I suppose that was your intention though. Get a life

  5. Mike says:

    dude….cmon, you know all we want is an easier way to cheat not do all that bull…………

  6. angel says:

    haha…how funny..

  7. angel says:

    btw i do cheatin on

  8. MMP says:

    This article was a total waste of time & you only tricked us into reading it for your page advertising campaigns.

  9. I Go to Harvard says:

    I took Economics at Harvard and cheated on the final. I got nearly a perfect score; I accidentally wrote out of the line on an essay question and my professor took a few points off. I win, losers.

  10. Professor Cram says:

    You guys are a bunch of failures.

  11. Margaret Rainford says:

    I did my essay all by myself,I would like you to read it for me and let me how I did thank you.

  12. Margaret Rainford says:

    I did my essay all by myself,I would like you to read it for me and let me know how I did.If you can help me in this way I will send my essay to you thank you.

  13. Failing college: Top 10 ways to screw up before graduation | Citations says:

    [...] someone else write your term paper. These are all great ways to get expelled. Professor Cram in “Best Ways to Cheat in College,” a post in Good Study Habits published by, helps guide students in the [...]

  14. howtocheat says:

    I can tell you exactly how to get thru college without trying. It’s not even technically cheating.

    You take an online class, don’t turn in your work, and then cry to the college that the instructor dropped you because they are prejudice against you because you are……….

    Doesn’t matter, fill in anything. Of course there is nothing in the instructors bio to say what race or sex thy are and no picture. And there is no way for them to tell what you are, race wise. Doesn’t matter. You could both be pink and purple lizards from Mars.

    Scream racism or sexual prejudice. Even religious prejudice can work. Never mind that you have never mentioned race, religion or sexual orientation anywhere in the class website. They don’t check for proof.

    The college is so freaked out that they could get a race or sex suit that they order the instructors to pass you without doing any work or taking any tests.

    I am not lying, I was an instructor for years until I got fed up with how they favored these bogus complaints and didn’t care about those who were actually doing the work. The crying student screaming unfair got an A just like those who did all the work all semester.

    Yes, I turned in mountains of proof that they were failing because they didn’t do their homework or show up for class, but its all about money. The college gets money for students who pass, especially those on financial aid, and that is more important than the other 45 students who are really trying. They would rather pass one liar than to cater to the others who want to come back and learn.
    Im done venting now.

  15. Samantha says:

    Most students do cheat at some point in college. College is a game to get through and learn to manage time and use your brain. Most subjects will have nothing to do with what you will do later in life. I used programs to get through calculus with my TI-89 calculator called every step calculus. It helped me get through easier problems and then I could concentrate on the tougher ones. Worked like a charm.

  16. Candance Abdulaziz says:

    Hi I like everything about mobiles and games and here I own a lot to read great work!

  17. Kizzy Quear says:

    This web site does not render correctly on my iphone 4 – you may want to try and repair that

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