Harvard University: 42 Percent of Incoming Students Admit Cheating

By Zack
September 6, 2013 2:27 pm Last Updated: July 18, 2015 5:19 pm

In a school newspaper survey, more than four out of 10 future Harvard University students said they have cheated on a homework assignment or problem set.

A lesser amount admitted to cheating on a paper or take-home assignment (17 percent) or an exam (10 percent), reported the Harvard Crimson, which conducted the survey.

Recruited athletes admitted to cheating more than their peers.

The large survey of the Class of 2017 was of more than 1,300 incoming freshmen, nearly 80 percent of the class.

The survey comes after several cheating scandals over the past several years have harmed Harvard’s reputation. In one case, the school announced that more than half of the 250 students under investigation for cheating in an undergraduate course were ordered to withdraw from the school.

“Even though this is a national problem, the numbers reported from the student newspaper’s informal survey align with the decision Harvard College made last year to take action,” Jeff Neal, a Harvard spokesman, told the Boston Globe in an emailed statement. 

Neal said Harvard is going to communicate to first-year students especially, and all students, the importance of academic integrity.

“At the end of this process, we hope that Harvard will not only continue to beat national averages in reports of cheating, but also strengthen Harvard’s culture of integrity, in which cheating is the rare exception,”