Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Markets in Everything: Pay Somebody to Take Your Online Classes, Get an A 99% of the Time

You can now hire somebody to take your online classes, with a 99% chance of getting an A:
 

"WeTakeYourClass.com is a site dedicated to helping students with online classes. I’m sure you are here because you are wondering “how will I have time to take my online class?” It may be that one class such as statistics or accounting. We know some people have trouble with numbers. We get that. We are here to help. We offer an affordable solution, which includes having a tutor take your class for you. Whether it’s one test, homework, project, or whole class we are there for you when you need us."

"We get As 99% of the time. If you have a course that falls outside our range of ability we will not take it. We will not put your grade at risk. We guarantee an A or B on all work or its [sic] free."

"We specialize in math, business or science classes, but we also offer assistance in a wide variety of other subjects. Please contact a specialist to discuss your class needs and we will let you know what we can do for you." 

23 Comments:

At 9/12/2012 4:27 PM, Blogger juandos said...

Oh this is just BS!!!

Where were folks like this when I needed them in my college days, back in the 'slide rule' era?..:-(

 
At 9/12/2012 4:58 PM, Blogger Mike said...

I find it hard to believe that there's a college where this would actually work (at least as far as taking the whole class or classes).

I took a couple of online classes for fun at the community college here and every class has 3 or 4 tests each semester that you have to take, in person, with photo ID. The online classes they offer at The London School require you to fly to their testing center in Chicago.

 
At 9/12/2012 5:45 PM, Blogger Jim said...

I am somewhat troubled by this. I followed the link and found out that there are many sites that offer this service. One quotes a fee a low as $695 for grad level courses and only $430 for undergrad economics courses. I teach live and hybrid classes part time at a local Community College and the instructors talk about online cheating often. Evidently these sites are able to cover up their different IP addresses but live ID'd testing would stop this. But it would hurt most distance learning unless remote centers could be used. Newer laptops have a thumb print device on them so that might put a stop to all this. I just can't believe these sites are legal. It is certainly unethical to do this. This is the downside to "markets in everything". Maybe I can start a business tracking down these cheater sites and sabatoging them or exposing their customer lists. Surely universities and accrediting agencies would be willing to pay a fee....:)

 
At 9/12/2012 6:39 PM, Blogger Hydra said...

Another free market fraud.

 
At 9/12/2012 8:21 PM, Blogger John B. Chilton said...

But they confuse its and it's!
====From the website:

3) If its an online assignment, we will complete it for you and send an invoice when its done. If its an offline assignment we will send an invoice and once its paid, we will complete your work and send it to you within the deadline.

 
At 9/12/2012 8:22 PM, Blogger John B. Chilton said...

But they confuse its and it's!
====From the website:

3) If its an online assignment, we will complete it for you and send an invoice when its done. If its an offline assignment we will send an invoice and once its paid, we will complete your work and send it to you within the deadline.

 
At 9/12/2012 9:32 PM, Blogger Soozcat said...

One thing's for sure, you'd get an F in ethics.

 
At 9/13/2012 1:20 AM, Blogger Don Culo said...

"One thing's for sure, you'd get an F in ethics"

**************

That would make you a perfect graduate for making millions on Wall Street.

 
At 9/13/2012 1:35 AM, Blogger Ken said...

Another free market fraud.

The universities that hand out the A's? The universities that get enormous funding from state and federal governments? The universities that aren't interested in providing an education, but on keeping the government gravy train going?

A fraud I agree. But as you previously defined free market as government intrusion, I guess the university system, in your mind anyway, qualifies as a free market.

 
At 9/13/2012 3:59 AM, Blogger bluecollartrader said...

Solve the distance learning problem by video conferencing the test, along with retina scan or thumbprint ID. Have these facilities in the major cities of each state. All colleges and universities could share the cost.

 
At 9/13/2012 6:12 AM, OpenID Sprewell said...

How is this different than university classes on campus? Nobody ever checked ID on my campus: I could sign up for any class and just send someone else to turn in the homework and take the tests. If someone wants to cheat for a credential, there is little you can do about it today.

 
At 9/13/2012 8:21 AM, Blogger Krishnan said...

Universities were offering "distance learning" for years - often providing financial incentives to do so - They were unconcerned about the problems with cheating - the market was expanding for credentials - so the administrators said "Hey, need to get onto this and make money"

Re: Sprewell - Yes, one can indeed cheat while on campus - but that is certainly easy to clamp down on - even in large classes - The real problem is the almost complete lack of attention being paid to cheating in general - Why are HW's being graded and why do HW's count for so much? Why are exams not changed every year, every semester? Why are not all exams open book, open notes? (Because it is difficult to write such exams and so people do not make the effort to - they hide their exams as if they are some CIA secret when the students already know what the exam has)

There ARE ways to combat cheating - it takes an attitude that says "I will test them appropriately and make sure that whoever is taking the test is indeed the person he/she supposed to be"

 
At 9/13/2012 9:09 AM, Blogger Don said...

At the end of the day, if people pay somebody else to take their classes, so what? The credentials only tell an interviewer that you've completed a series of examinations in a controlled environment. It doesn't say a darned thing about what you can do in the real world, and after you've gotten your first job, those credentials are largely just a small hurdle you must jump in the HR department in order to get the next interview (exceptions, of course, are academia and government, but those tend to be exceptions on almost every other front too ;^).

Besides, after paying the insanely inflated prices of today's university education, who has the money to pay these guys?

Oh, wait... $430? Hmmm, I paid more than that for some of my BOOKS in the late '80s, so I guess I can see where there's a serious market here :^).

 
At 9/13/2012 9:49 AM, OpenID ulvog said...

Jim –
To take your tongue-in-cheek suggestion of a business to hunt down the cheaters forward one step, how about this?

Such a business could have skilled people take the college’s course and have dummy students hire the course-takers-for-hire. That way you can identify a specific course completed by a hired-tutor.

Then compare all of the electronic traces of participation from the three different types of ‘students’. I’m guessing there may be identifiable differences between a legit student, known professional, and a hired tutor.

A smart entrepreneur might be able to sell that service to lots of colleges.

 
At 9/13/2012 10:16 AM, Blogger givemefreedom said...

Hydra said...
Another free market fraud.



Again Hydra, you have no clue what free markets are about.

This is all about human flaws, not free markets. Some people will cheat to get what they want. That happens in all kinds of markets, it is not a symptom of free markets.

In a free market, employers will come to understand that graduates of these online courses that do not have controls in place to prevent such cheating can have fraudulent credentials and as such employers will place less value on them. This will decrease the atractiveness of those slack online programs and less people will register.

The ones who prevent this tyoe of behaviour will get the better reputations and have more demand from students since the value of the institutions creditial will be higher as employers will view them as less likely to be fraudulent. These institutions will grow, the other ones will not.

That is a free market.

 
At 9/13/2012 2:17 PM, Blogger cactusKP said...

"Students" are demanding degrees, not an education. So much so, that the cost of a college degree is growing exponentially, while the information and even the coursework is now available online for free!

What are employers demanding?

 
At 9/13/2012 3:32 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

Sprewell

"How is this different than university classes on campus? Nobody ever checked ID on my campus: I could sign up for any class and just send someone else to turn in the homework and take the tests. If someone wants to cheat for a credential, there is little you can do about it today."

And why would anybody care? If someone is willing to spend money and get nothing in return its their loss.

Surely a counterfeit diploma is cheaper than the cost of classes plus paying someone to take them for you.

And if the job or career you seek doesn't require that you actually know anything, why are you taking classes in the first place?

It's all a big mystery.

 
At 9/13/2012 3:49 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"A smart entrepreneur might be able to sell that service to lots of colleges."

I doubt it. It's too much trouble. Other than taking reasonable precautions to prevent cheating, why would colleges care? They provide a course, they get paid for it.

The loss, if there is one, is to the person who pays for a course but doesn't actually take it. So what?

 
At 9/14/2012 4:14 AM, OpenID Sprewell said...

Ron, right, my only point was that such cheating is just as easy to do "offline" at college campuses as it is to do online. As to whether colleges care, I suppose givemefreedom's explanation would make sense for why they would care, if employers were actually monitoring quality of various degrees from various institutions. However, my impression is that they don't much care about the degree beyond as a checkmark on the resume, so you could scrap the whole college system and come out ahead, which is what's essentially about to happen with online learning. :)

 
At 9/14/2012 10:58 AM, Blogger wright said...

Gee, when I went to the trouble of taking online classes, it was actually to learn something. What a concept.
I think this article shines a bright light on the whole 'credentialing' notion - what was once a noble concept has degenerated, as so much in our society has, into just another opportunity for scammers, cheaters and profiteers.

 
At 9/14/2012 10:39 PM, Blogger Mogumbo Gono said...

The onus is on employers. Any employer that wants a truly educated employee will construct a real test that cannot be faked.

Then all these shenanigans will fall by the wayside. You can't fake proficiency in English composition, or grammar, or spelling, or math. Employers can easily separate the wheat from the chaff.

 
At 9/15/2012 6:32 AM, Blogger Jim said...

Robert Half, a recruiting and temp service for accountants tests accounting candidates even if they are senior controllers and CFOs. Those who faked their way through college and careers get filtered out. In many professions and technical fields, there are more and more non-college credentials that are becomming accepted over collegiate credentials. A good example would be MSCE certification vs. a computer science degree. Colleges will move to prevent fraud if they want to stay in business. Employers just want people with usable skills and will prefer credentials that were thoroughly tested with the proper fraud controls.

 
At 9/15/2012 6:38 AM, Blogger Jim said...

Mogumbo, It is expensive for most employers to give comprehensive examinations. Also, the EEOC takes a dim view of testing applicants and this imposes a legal risk on employers. Employers use college credentials as a cheap screening device because that is the only method that is unquestioned by the EEOC and the courts. Since employers pay taxes to support these institutions, it's only fair for them to expect colleges to screen their degree holders. If not, then employers will use other means and colleges are out of business. Besides, many factors go into selecting employees and a single written exam can't be expected to separate the wheat from the chaff.

 

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