More students cheat in exams, and most are in Auckland

More students are cheating in NCEA exams, figures show. Photo / iStock
More students are cheating in NCEA exams, figures show. Photo / iStock

The number of students cheating on their NCEA exams went up last year.

Of 305 students investigated, 290 were caught cheating.

That's 10 more than the 280 who were caught cheating in the 2014 exams, out of 299 investigated pupils, according to the New Zealand Qualifications Authority's (NZQA) report, released today.

Of those caught cheating in last year's exams, 102 were using or had a cellphone on them, and 59 were either using notes or had notes on them during their test.

A further 39 were found with unauthorised material, eight with inappropriate or offensive material/language, and 20 had an unauthorised absence from the exam room.

Two students were caught with similar answers to another candidate, 34 were caught communicating with another student in the exam room, and 20 were found to have caused a disturbance. A further 10 had the authenticity of their answers questioned.

Most of those caught cheating were in Auckland (159), followed by Wellington with 27. Central Plateau and the Cook Islands were the only two regions listed as having no cheaters.

This was similar to 2014 results, which also found Auckland had the most cheats -- 124 that year -- followed by Wellington with 41. Again Central Plateau and the Cook Islands had no cheaters, and Wairarapa and Southland students were also honest

Using cellphones was also the most popular method of cheating in 2014, when 116 pupils caught using or in possession of phones.

NZQA received 1,314,207 entries in NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship examinations from 145,464 students last year.

Using roll-based results, analysis of this year's data found girls outshone boys across NCEA Levels 1, 2 and 3, as well as literacy and numeracy.

Asian students fared better across NCEA Level 1, with 87.9 per cent achieving the grade, followed by NZ European pupils (81.7 per cent), then Pacific Islanders (71.9 per cent) and Maori students (63.5). Similar trends were seen at Level 2 and Level 3.

At University Entrance, Asian students again coming out on top, with 64.5 per cent gaining UE, followed by NZ European pupils at 57.4 per cent, 31 per cent of Maori students gained UE, followed by 29.5 per cent of Pacific pupils.

High-decile schools also saw more of their pupils achieve NCEA Levels 1, 2 and 3, as well as UE, although it was close at the top for Level 2, with 80.3 per cent of high decile school pupils achieving the grade, and 78.8 per cent of mid decile school pupils.

Number of cheats per year:

• 2015 - 290
• 2014 - 280
• 2013 - 273
• 2012 - 354
• 2011 - 299

2015 cheats by region:

• Auckland - 159
• Bay of Plenty - 6
• Canterbury - 23
• Central Plateau -
• East Coast - 3
• Hawke's Bay - 12
• Manawatu - 7
• Nelson/Marlborough - 5
• Northland - 25
• Otago - 5
• Southland - 2
• Taranaki - 4
• Waikato - 20
• Wairarapa - 2
• Wanganui - 1
• Wellington - 27
• West Coast - 4
• Cook Islands -

(Source: NZQA)

- NZ Herald

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