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College students take shortcuts with essay purchasing sites

by Margaret Stewart - Managing Editor
Tue, Sep 17th 2019 10:00 pm
College students around the world are finding ways to cut corners, purchasing original essays online through globally recognized sites.
Photo Credit: @NPR via Twitter
College students around the world are finding ways to cut corners, purchasing original essays online through globally recognized sites. Photo Credit: @NPR via Twitter

There are thousands of colleges across America filled with different students from different backgrounds studying different subjects. The differences are astounding and if looked at too closely, they can be overwhelming. However, despite all of their differences, every classroom, student and professor have something in common. They all have a syllabus which defines academic dishonesty. 

While academic dishonesty has become a prevalent problem within the classroom, writer for The Independent Farah Stockman reports “academic writing” is a lucrative business to get into. 

“Millions of essays [are] ordered annually in a vast, worldwide industry that provides enough income for some writers to make it a full-time job,” Stockman wrote. 

The job requires its free-lancers to write school assignments for “college students in the United States, Britain and Australia.” 

According to the International Center for Academic Integrity (ICAI), approximately 71,000 students participated in a survey that revealed 62% of students say they have cheated on written assignments. 

“A Facebook group for academic writers in Kenya has over 50,000 members,” Stockman wrote. 

As the pressure increases for undergraduate students, the essay-for-hire field is becoming more popular as well. In an article with NPR, students acknowledge plagiarism is easier to catch thanks to the updates in technology, so they have found an alternative. 

“Students justify essay buying as the only way to keep up,” NPR reports. “They figure that everyone is doing it one way or another — whether they're purchasing help online or getting it from family or friends.” 

While the technology and programs are there for finding plagiarism, this kind of cheating is harder to catch as the essays are original works. 

“A few nations have recently proposed or passed laws outlawing essay mills, and more than a dozen U.S. states have laws on the books against them,” NPR said. “But prosecuting essay mills, which are often based overseas in Pakistan, Kenya and Ukraine, for example, is complicated.” 

All of this is taking center stage as the other school scandal, where the rich and famous are bribing colleges in order to insure their child’s attendance, is coming to a close. Colleges are scrutinizing not only how potential students are enrolled but how they maintain their academic status after they are admitted. 

Paperell, an online site that sells essays, has 4.9 stars, 42 reviews and allows students to shop by author. “Get your college task done with a personal approach,” Paperell boasts. “Papers from pros you can trust!” 

Paperell prides itself on being built by students for students. 

“It all began a few years ago when we, as students, helped each other complete our own assignments,” the Paperell site states. “Shortly after, we discovered that other students need help too: that is when Paperell was created. Our main aim is to help hundreds of students pass their tests and home assignments by giving advice and helping to get to know the subject better.” 

EssayShark is another site for students looking to buy college essays. Through an email correspondence with EssayShark’s public relations department, “the company did not consider its services to be cheating, and that it warned students the essays are for ‘research and reference purposes only’ and are not to be passed off as a student’s own work,” according to The New York Times. 

Though the site was not created for cheating, it was only a matter of time before students began taking advantage of the site’s services. 

“We do not condone, encourage or knowingly take part in plagiarism or any other acts of academic fraud,” EssayShark said. 

Whether it meant for it to happen or not, the essay industry needs stricter regulations in order for students to remain academically honest. 

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