ARLINGTON - UTA students will soon be required to sign pledges that they are not cheating on exams and papers. University officials presented the plan to faculty and student representatives Wednesday afternoon.

Man, that's weird, but I don't see nothing wrong with it, said student Larry Green.

Another student, Bryan Albers, agreed.

It's something I don't have a problem with, Albers said. Not a big deal.

That's what we heard from most students and what school officials hope for.

It reminds them to be a person of character, said UTA Vice President of Student Affairs Frank Lamas. And I think that will translate into positive ways in the community.

Like other universities, UTA has seen a spike in reports of academic dishonesty.

They've come close to doubling in the last four or five years, and we have been monitoring it, Lamas said.

It's just a few hundred cases out of more than 33,000 students. But educators say it's a troubling, nationwide trend.

In addition to having students sign pledges, in the spring, UTA is hiring an assistant director for academic integrity to oversee the problem of student dishonesty.

Researchers say increased cheating on campus appears to be driven by increased competition, heavier workloads and the internet.

Bio major Danielle Carlton sees a simple lesson in it.

You can't be expected to do well in life if you cheat your way through school, she said.


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