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Exam Cheating Scandal: Students, Staff may Face Tough Action

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Staff Writer, TLR

Published on March 15, 2024, 12:08:13

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uae, students, examination, cheating, penalty, school

Several cases of cheating have been uncovered among students during the end-of-semester exams. These incidents were reported by a leading school organisation in the UAE on Thursday.

They said that strict actions will be taken, including giving zero marks to students caught cheating. Moreover, any staff members involved will be reported to the public prosecution, in line with Federal Decree Law No. (33) of 2023, which aims to prevent fraud and maintain integrity in the examination process, school authorities confirmed.

Hefty Fines

Examinations, be they class tests, board exams, or university assessments, inevitably induce stress. However, before succumbing to temptation, reconsider your actions; Federal Decree Law No. (33) of 2023, the law introduced last year to counter cheating in examinations, imposes fines of up to Dh200,000 for offenders.

The penalty is imposed on anyone other than a student who commits any of three acts before, during, or after the exams. These offences include printing, publishing, promoting, transmitting, or leaking exam-related information, altering answers or grades and impersonating a student during the exam.

“Maintaining academic integrity is paramount in any educational institution, and the recent federal law addressing cheating in examinations underscores this commitment. Upholding high standards of honesty and integrity not only ensures a fair academic environment but also cultivates ethical values in students,” said Sunil Ambalavelil, Principal Partner of Dubai-based NYK Law Firm, while talking to The Law Reporters.

The law extends liability to those who participate or contribute as original perpetrators or partners in the commission of these acts, subjecting them to the same penalties.

Additionally, if convicted, individuals may be required to perform community service for a maximum of six months, either in addition to or instead of the monetary fine.

If students are caught cheating, disciplinary procedures will be initiated following the conduct rules and regulations set forth by the Ministry of Education, educational authorities in each emirate and individual educational institutions.

The law provides a comprehensive definition of cheating, encompassing actions such as obtaining or attempting to obtain, giving, or leaking exam-related information through illegal means.

This includes unauthorised access to electronic examination systems, falsification of results, or the use of any prohibited information technology or other illegal means within examination premises.

“It's imperative that schools emphasise the importance of academic integrity through training, clear guidelines and compassionate discipline. While education is about nurturing growth, there must be firm consequences for misconduct to uphold the integrity of the system," said Sunil.

Additionally, these regulations apply to governmental and private educational institutions, including schools, universities and colleges, ensuring uniformity in enforcement across the education sector.

For any enquiries or information, contact ask@tlr.ae or call us on +971 52 644 3004Follow The Law Reporters on WhatsApp Channels.

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