Monday, July 18, 2011

Washington Post Roundtable on Cheating

"You are what you measure", according to a Washington Post article from a leadership roundtable on education.  Dan Ariely, a behavioral economics professor from Duke, argues that by measuring a particular statistic and including it in employee evaluation, employees will devote a disproportional amount of their effort to maximizing that measure.  His analysis from the corporate word seems to support this.

Steven Pearlson writes that based on the actions of other employees across a whole host of sectors, we shouldn't be surprised to find teachers cheating.  His solution is to punish the offenders so as to deter others from engaging in similar behavior.  Certainly that's true, but I hope there can be structural changes to reduce cheating because it impacts not only data and things that matter to adults but also the futures of children.  Cheating has consequences for kids, and actively minimizing such dishonesty requires a multi-pronged approach.

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