Professor Insists Anti-Cheating Rules Aren’t Fair to ‘Black and Latinx’ Students – Opinion

Antar A. Tichavakunda from the University of Cincinnati has strong opinions on regulation regarding students who are particularly pigmented.

The professor has penned a piece for Inside Higher Ed insisting darker individuals don’t deserve the same rules as whites.

In “Let’s Talk About Race and Academic Integrity,” he serves up stats:

[In a study], Black and Asian…students reported being accused of plagiarism [twice that of] any other group… Further, Black students were the most likely to report being accused of cheating in college (9 percent of Black students reported being accused of cheating in a college course, compared to 6 percent of all students).

Hence, we need to take a serious look at race related to “academic integrity.”

You are not familiar with these words:

Already, academic integrity has to do with race. The idea of academic integrity, from who cheats to what punishments are given to cheaters to how technology monitors cheating to determine which cheating is considered cheating, has always been about race.

It appears Antar’s positions hold that only white people can be racist; and white people are indeed racist. He gave the example of a woman from Africa to whom he was speaking while researching books. She stated that she was the black only female major in her field and had never cheated. She was once caught by someone copying her in a test. She moved across the room, fearing she’d be the one accused.

Antar said that this proved to be a valid point.

The measures she took…are telling. … Racist and sexist beliefs shape assumptions about who looks like they are cheating and who is likely to be believed in front of a non-Black instructor.

He assails anti-cheating software, which “does not always accurately assess people who have darker skin.”

[A]As Ruha Benjamin, Safiya Nobel and other scholars have demonstrated, algorithms and codes that are used to create such technology can reinforce racial stereotypes.

Amid our ideas on academic integrity, he poses, “we can be too punitive.”

He wouldn’t destructively ding a student solely for lifting lines:

I won’t be failing a student for one copy and paste too many when the option of a redirection and a resetting of expectations is right there. Often, the problem lies in pedagogy — not the student. It can be more harmful than beneficial to have a zero tolerance policy regarding plagiarism and academic integrity.

Inequity = intolerance

Zero-tolerance education policies are a lesson in how they can disproportionately affect Black and Latinx students. Similar results can be expected for academic integrity policies.

It sounds as if whitey makes the rules; and he’s boldly bigoted:

It is not possible to have race-neutral decisions regarding which transgressions should be forgivable or which ones must be reported.

Interrogation’s on order:

Decision makers, from faculty members to student conduct officers, hold beliefs about identity that — if uninterrogated — could potentially be racist and discriminatory.

The instructor also asserts — “from experience” — that white fraternities and sororities “sometimes have test banks that members can use.”

The takeaway from his experience:

Many students do not understand the value of homework or taking exams.


Black students who are part of the extreme minority can have negative effects on their education by colluding or cheating in exams.

Everybody cheats. Blacks, however, have less chance; See: racism

[O]ne woman told me about the school of engineering, “There is rampant cheating, which is why [during exams]White people sit alongside white people. And the Asians sit where the Asians sit.” For Black students, who were usually one of few or the only one in their classes, it would be harder to collaborate on tests even if they wanted to. Race can influence access to academic unfair advantages, which some may consider dishonest.

The college man’s conclusion: “‘Academic’ integrity and ‘academic honesty’ are fraught terms.”

[W]We must accept the reality that policies and discourses around academic integrity do not reflect our race.

Is Antar’s approach to education workable? Or is it merely that same word, minus the “r”?

No matter what the situation, we must continue our evolutionary journey.

The notion of earning success existed in America as well as school. It was actually hailed as the virtue of the greatest country on Earth.

As far as I know, these days are long gone.

Professes, Stand for Excellence: The Case of Ending Grades

Professor Decries the Racism of Enforced High School Rules and the ‘Overvaluation of White Feelings’

Law Professor Denounces the Constitution’s ‘White Supremacy,’ Calls for an ‘Antiracist’ Replacement

Professor Razes The Evil of Writing Rules and Whacks White Supremacy By Gonging Grades

College Schools Students and Staff on Microaggressions’ ‘Death by a Thousand Cuts’ and the ‘Myth of Meritocracy’

In fact, to suggest certain races couldn’t be expected to keep up was once considered…racist.

But it’s a new world — of dog whistles and codes, in a country increasingly color-coded.



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