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Note To Cheaters: Next Time Hire the Brains

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the in-canada-of-all-places dept.

Canada 349

An anonymous reader writes "A man and his accomplice are accused of cheating on a Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) by using a wireless pinhole camera and cellphone to send realtime images of the exam questions to a team of people supplying the 'correct' answers. One problem: the 'answer team' was tricked into the job by being told they were taking a test to qualify them as MCAT tutors. There were several clues the 'tutor exam' was bogus, including the poor quality of the images of the questions. Suspicious, the 'answer team' discovered the real MCAT test was occurring at the same time. They started feeding wrong answers to the accused cheaters and called campus security. The two accused cheaters now face several charges as a result."

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Criminal Charges? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303140)

Since when does cheating on an exam result in criminal charges????

Re:Criminal Charges? (4, Interesting)

enderjsv (1128541) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303154)

Could be fraud charges related less to them cheating, and more to them duping people into thinking they were applying for a job. But I'm not a lawyer.

Re:Criminal Charges? (2)

knotprawn (1935752) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303180)

Oh that's because they were using an i-Phone

Re:Criminal Charges? (5, Funny)

PPH (736903) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303270)

Oh that's because they were using an i-Phone

It was a pin-hole camera, not a pin-head camera.

Re:Criminal Charges? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303442)

The diceman says Ooooooow!

Re:Criminal Charges? (1)

FatdogHaiku (978357) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303452)

Oh that's because they were using an i-Phone

It was a pin-hole camera, not a pin-head camera.

Cue Larry the Cable Guy:
"Now that's funny I don't care who you are..."
I post because I have no points to give.

Re:Criminal Charges? (3, Interesting)

Alien Being (18488) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304068)

It's more abhorrent since it's a medical test. I had the recent displeasure of working in an IT job related to med schools. From the bits and pieces that I saw of the more promising applications I processed, I'm truly horrified by the entire "profession". How could someone have such good college transcripts and MCAT scores yet write such stupid essays, I wondered? This explains a lot.

Re:Criminal Charges? (1)

magnusrex1280 (1075361) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304140)

That sucks, you were working in IT but got stuck processing applications.

Re:Criminal Charges? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303170)

Sounds like the right kind of punishment. And throw away the key, while they're at it.

Re:Criminal Charges? (5, Insightful)

pclminion (145572) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303204)

Since when does cheating on an exam result in criminal charges????

Next time a "doctor" is about to put you under and saw through your sternum to operate on your heart, ask yourself the same question.

Re:Criminal Charges? (4, Insightful)

Velex (120469) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303282)

Next time a "doctor" is about to put you under and saw through your sternum to operate on your heart, ask yourself the same question.

I hope if I get to that point (heart problems run in my family) I've another citizenship besides USA in a country that doesn't try to shoehorn capitalism into medicine.

After working at an answering service for 5 years, I've learned that doctors in the USA at least are duplicitous, technically inept (as in can't understand their pager doesn't work when turned off), and willing to lie left and right just to get a small discount on their bill. I've stopped going to my doctor altogether because the board of directors at the affiliated hospital let us know that it might not be safe to be a patient of one of their doctors any more over a billing dispute.

I have less respect for doctors than I do lawyers, because at least the lawyer clients have some basis for an argument when they dispute their bill. All doctors know are cuss words, and I intend to drop my health insurance next open enrollment period because I'm sick of subsidizing these pigs.

Re:Criminal Charges? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303414)

Make sure that country is not Canada [ahajournals.org] lest you run a greater risk of mortality from your heart problems. You might as well cross the UK [dailymail.co.uk] off your list as well.

Re:Criminal Charges? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303568)

Sure, because ability to work a pager has a great deal to do with providing successful medical care.

Also, I assume that you're willing to pay for all future medical care out of pocket or just not receive that medical care? I hope that works out for you need major/expensive medical care without insurance.

Re:Criminal Charges? (4, Insightful)

Oxford_Comma_Lover (1679530) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303846)

Having Insurance is like winning a battle in which many people die: it's worse than almost anything, except for losing one/not having insurance when you need it.

Re:Criminal Charges? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303868)

Having worked in many different phone banks in my youth I can tell you this is true of most professions, not just the medical field. And while our medical system may not be ideal there is a reason the rich from other countries come here when they want a complex heart surgery.

And while the idea of subsidizing the medical profession may not appeal to you do you think you are going to avoid that by not having insurance? Try comparing the billing you get for any procedure to that of someone who is not insured. You pay either way, in advance or per incident.

Re:Criminal Charges? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303998)

there is a reason the rich from other countries come here when they want a complex heart surgery.

So they only have to wait 3 days instead of 10?

Try comparing the billing you get for any procedure to that of someone who is not insured.

Sure. My wife went to the emergency room recently with a severe allergic reaction. They thought we were uninsured and sent us the full bill, which was $530. When they found our we had insurance, they billed our insurance company $3400, of which they paid $1100.00, and now the hospital want a $100 deductible.

If you think private insurance is a sane way to pay for health care you are a fucking moron.

Re:Criminal Charges? (1, Insightful)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303924)

Next time a "doctor" is about to put you under and saw through your sternum to operate on your heart, ask yourself the same question.

I hope if I get to that point (heart problems run in my family) I've another citizenship besides USA in a country that doesn't try to shoehorn capitalism into medicine.

After working at an answering service for 5 years, I've learned that doctors in the USA at least are duplicitous, technically inept (as in can't understand their pager doesn't work when turned off), and willing to lie left and right just to get a small discount on their bill.
I've stopped going to my doctor altogether because the board of directors at the affiliated hospital let us know that it might not be safe to be a patient of one of their doctors any more over a billing dispute.

I have less respect for doctors than I do lawyers, because at least the lawyer clients have some basis for an argument when they dispute their bill. All doctors know are cuss words, and I intend to drop my health insurance next open enrollment period because I'm sick of subsidizing these pigs.

Boy, if you think doctors are inept now, wait until the bureaucracy takes over. Nothing spells incompetence like a bureaucrat. If you think medicine is a bad example, look at cars. Compare cars made by governments (Communist countries) to cars made by private citizens (capitalist countries) and tell me which one is more reliable, more efficient and safer? Now, ask yourself if you want your doctor to run like a Toyota or a Moskvitch.

Re:Criminal Charges? (2)

kcitren (72383) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304102)

I hope if I get to that point (heart problems run in my family) I've another citizenship besides USA in a country that doesn't try to shoehorn capitalism into medicine.

What does a capitalist vs socialist economy have to do with how to test and qualify doctors?

I've stopped going to my doctor altogether because the board of directors at the affiliated hospital let us know that it might not be safe to be a patient of one of their doctors any more over a billing dispute.

If this is true, then you should publicize this behavior. Treating a patient differently, especially if, as you said, in a dangerous manner, based on who they work violates the rules of ethical behavior and codes on conduct.

Re:Criminal Charges? (2)

Alien Being (18488) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304130)

Yep, and due to our horrible system we are attracting the very worst of them. MD means nothing to me anymore. They're the sleaziest of them all.

Here in Massachusetts, where we have some of the finest medical schools, we are legally obligated to buy their shit. Mitt Romney is now trying to explain why that's right for MA but wrong for the nation.

Doctor, heal thyself.

Re:Criminal Charges? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303546)

Like that would be any different from a "legitimate" doctor.

Re:Criminal Charges? (1)

Rabbidous (1844966) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303704)

I wouldn't care how my doctor did on the MCATS if (s)he stayed at a Holiday Inn Express last night...

Re:Criminal Charges? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303902)

Since when does cheating on an exam result in criminal charges????

Next time a "doctor" is about to put you under and saw through your sternum to operate on your heart, ask yourself the same question.

So in other words, you just hope it's illegal, because you're afraid if it's not.

Not exactly an insightful answer.

Re:Criminal Charges? (1)

Anne_Nonymous (313852) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303238)

When the testing service is Big Business.

Re:Criminal Charges? (1)

Alien Being (18488) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304146)

It sure is.

Re:Criminal Charges? (3, Insightful)

syousef (465911) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303268)

Since when does cheating on an exam result in criminal charges????

Since it could put lives in danger. Cheating on an exam for a pilot's license for instance would get you into similar trouble. (So could lying about your current qualifications as a pilot or experience). That's a glamorous example but basically any specialized job which requires qualifications, if you lie about them, could land you with a criminal record. And it makes sense. You don't want someone not qualified as an engineer designing a bridge. You don't want someone who doesn't know what they're doing with gas pipes installing a gas water heater. The potential for death and injury is just too high.

The only difference in this case is that it's a college entrance exam, not one for getting accredited or qualified, as others have pointed out. Still, I don't think someone cheating to get in is going to go straight and stop cheating once they are in.

Re:Criminal Charges? (2)

Oxford_Comma_Lover (1679530) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303856)

Nah--From TFA: each facing six charges including theft, unauthorized use of a computer, using a device to obtain unauthorized service and theft of data.

Re:Criminal Charges? (1)

milkmage (795746) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303500)

"They started feeding wrong answers to the accused cheaters and called campus security."

I'm thinking campus security not only enforces the law, but the rules in the student handbook as well. Cheating is probably listed as an offense in the handbook, thus the "charges"

Re:Criminal Charges? (3, Interesting)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303702)

This being Canada, and all that. We take a very dim view of this type of stuff. So cheaters beware, you will be criminally nailed to the wall for it. [justice.gc.ca]
Ala:

404. Every one who falsely, with intent to gain advantage for himself or some other person, personates a candidate at a competitive or qualifying examination held under the authority of law or in connection with a university, college or school or who knowingly avails himself of the results of such personation is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.

Summer conviction means 2 years or less.

Re:Criminal Charges? - TFA (1)

Oxford_Comma_Lover (1679530) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303822)

From TFA: each facing six charges including theft, unauthorized use of a computer, using a device to obtain unauthorized service and theft of data.

Re:Criminal Charges? - TFA (1)

Alien Being (18488) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304166)

We should add "crimes against humanity" or somesuch. Let me see a doctor cure the fractured skull I give him for fucking up my friends health and getting rich from it.

The charges are bullshit. (3, Interesting)

pclminion (145572) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303166)

According to documents filed in provincial court in Richmond, B.C., Josiah Miguel Ruben and Houman Rezazadeh-Azar are each facing six charges including theft, unauthorized use of a computer, using a device to obtain unauthorized service and theft of data.

THESE are the charges? How about "conspiracy to commit murder," or "reckless endangerment?" These are the people who will be our medical doctors?!

Re:The charges are bullshit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303192)

Sadly, yes.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303206)

The MCAT just gets you into med school. It's basically a college's way of weeding out people out that aren't worth their time. The MCAT isn't what gets you your license to practice medicine.

Of course, I agree that I wouldn't want such a person being my physician.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303284)

And the license to practice supposed to weed out even more idiots? Interesting! You haven't met any 40-50 years old doctors lately! Have you?

Re:The charges are bullshit. (-1, Redundant)

Velex (120469) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303324)

I'd mod parent up, but I've already commented. Doctors are abusive, neglectful cheapskates. I've been told by the board of directors at a local hospital that it's not safe for me to go to their hospital any more over a billing dispute. If I ever have to deal with a doctor again, I'll be calling my lawyer, because after the threats I've received (on recordings I'd subpeona), I think it'd be easy for me to win malpractice against any area hospital.

Seriously, all I need is the recording of a doctor threatening that I'll wake up bloody in a ditch one day... Doctors are no better than drug dealers, because they are drug dealers.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303420)

Doctors are abusive, neglectful cheapskates. I've been told by the board of directors at a local hospital that it's not safe for me to go to their hospital any more over a billing dispute. If I ever have to deal with a doctor again, I'll be calling my lawyer, because after the threats I've received (on recordings I'd subpeona), I think it'd be easy for me to win malpractice against any area hospital.

One, and only one, of the following is true:

1) Absolutely all people everywhere of the same profession are identical in every way, and therefore the general conclusions about doctors you've drawn from your specific experience with one hospital are valid.
2) You're a moron.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (0)

NoSig (1919688) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303462)

3) you got trolled.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (1)

Oxford_Comma_Lover (1679530) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303904)

Not really--he just likely has a horrible local hospital and has never seen a good one, and he's generalizing because that's his experience with the profession. Humans generalize based on limited experience--it doesn't make them morons, it just gives them a limited information set, and reflects a tendency to overgeneralize. Most doctors lie regularly for insurance purposes and liability reasons--I'm generalizing, but I don't *think* I'm overgeneralizing, and even if I were, it would not necessarily mean I was a moron.

you forgot (4, Funny)

publiclurker (952615) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304074)

3) since he pissed his doctor off, nobody will renew his anti-psychotic medication.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303942)

Your doctor called - they are looking for you. The nice man in the white coat has a straightjacket and green room just for you. You might need to take some antipsycotics and other meds as well.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (2)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303294)

"Oh, I really wanted to learn when I am accepted, honestly, I just wanted to cheat to get in and THEN I start to learn for real"

Sorry, but do you really expect someone who cheats for an admission test to stop there? They don't have the knowledge and skill to start a curriculum, how do expect them to pass without continued cheating?

medical ethics (1)

epine (68316) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304214)

Your rich uncle dies and leaves you $30 million but *only* if you complete medical school by a set date, but he didn't understand the timeline and set the date too soon to be realistic *unless* you connive your entrance *before* you've had time to master the entrance exam.

Of course, you could just walk into any admissions dept. with a lawyer attesting to the legitimacy of the will and the funds behind it, and explain how *very* generous you feel toward your prospective alma mater if the conditions of success were expedited. Young people sometimes take rules too seriously.

A person's response to specific circumstances doesn't always dictate ethics over the long run, although most people who take this for granted discover otherwise.

I'm not sure their medical careers are ruined. Pharmaceutical firms are always on the lookout for highly motivated sales reps capable of banalizing bonhomie with the white smocks on tropical fishing expeditions. They'd probably be good at holding one hand under the deck chair while passing themselves off as rabid fans of any college football team in America the good doctors happen to name.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (1)

xero314 (722674) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303334)

If given the choice of who to pick as a medical doctor would you rather have one person that thinks they know what they are doing, or a person smart enough to hire a team to double check his work. Just saying, you can't judge a persons skills just because they chose a more efficient way of by passing an unnecessary barrier to entry.

Oh and quit the hyperbole, no one was endangering any one here. This was not about practicing medicine, just about getting into an establishment to learn how to practice medicine.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (2)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303484)

This is less about a barrier to entry than it is about ethics. They need to weed folks out in some fashion and I for one wouldn't want somebody that was willing to cheat on an exam to get an artificial boost into med school. On what basis would you suggest that the individuals would stop there?

Re:The charges are bullshit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303338)

THESE are the charges? How about "conspiracy to commit murder," or "reckless endangerment?" These are the people who will be our medical doctors?!

Oh, come on, this was just admission test, I'm sure they'd have spent years studding as hard as their peers... In fact, I am sure the court will absolve them with similar explanation.

BC has serious issues with immigration policies and letting people carry on with the social norms (including moral standards) and the way of life they had in their respective countries of origin. Large percentage of population here doesn't even speak English nor French.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (1)

retchdog (1319261) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303400)

I'm sure they'd have spent years studding as hard as their peers...

ROFL. I bet they did.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (3, Interesting)

Ruke (857276) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303460)

You can't make "suspected future intention to cheat on a licensing exam" a crime. The unauthorized use of a computer doesn't even make any sense, as well as using a device to obtain unauthorized access to a service. I'd be interested to see if they can make "theft" stick: the tests usually come with boilerplate preventing you from making unauthorized copies, but seeing as they paid for the test and were given it freely, that probably doesn't apply. The tests do usually come with boilerplate saying you can't make unauthorized copies, but that'd fall under contract violation, which is a civil violation, not criminal.

The thing is, they cheated, but that's not really illegal. It's wrong, but not illegal. They didn't endanger any lives; sure, they might have at some point, but they didn't actually do anything yet. They shouldn't be allowed into medical school, they should never be doctors, but they shouldn't be arrested.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303494)

I'm surprised that they aren't also getting nailed for wire fraud and conspiracy as well.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (1)

i.r.id10t (595143) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304126)

Throw in some copyright violation too...

Re:The charges are bullshit. (1)

SpectreBlofeld (886224) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303620)

I was thinking the same thing. A decent lawyer will make the case that a crime wasn't committed. Seems to me like you really can't pass a sensible law against cheating on a scholastic entry exam, but you could create a contract which provides suitable penalties for cheating.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (1)

cdrguru (88047) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303746)

If they did nothing illegal, keeping them out of medical school is clearly discrimination.

You can call it discrimination between qualified and unqualified people, but it is still discrimination and they can probably sue to gain entry. I'd say with some juries they might stand a pretty good chance of winning a lawsuit.

Then where are we?

Re:The charges are bullshit. (1)

Oxford_Comma_Lover (1679530) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303930)

In the US at least, there's no law against discrimination on the basis of the ability to pass admissions tests that are rational. (They may not even have to be rational if the school isn't government--I'm not sure off-hand.) I suppose there could be one in Canada... I can see the fights in the press over it now... but it would be a remarkably stupid, dumb, stupid (and maybe redundant) idea that tends to show off the most inefficient and dumb (and redundant) parts of Canadian government.

Re:The charges are bullshit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36304142)

The great part about such a lawsuit is that it would have a Streisand Effect on bar them from any meaningful employment beyond grunt labor down the road. Who would trust such a person in any business where they can't monitor his every action?

Re:The charges are bullshit. (1)

Alien Being (18488) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304194)

I'm all for medical science but most modern practitioners are charlatans.

Ok come down hard on MCAT but not for other tests (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303228)

Lots tests are based on cramming for the test and lead to people who can pass the test but they are clueless on what the test covers. and for stuff like Cisco and IT / MS tests need to be more open book / open goggle. Now I don't know that much on the Mcat but I think it covers stuff a doctor needs to know and if so they should make a big deal about it.

Re:Ok come down hard on MCAT but not for other tes (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303312)

Well, I think there's a bit of a difference. When something's wrong with a computer, there's little harm in the tech googling for the best answer, asking experts, reading manuals... When there's something wrong with a patient, I'd rather have a doc who KNOWS what to do to make sure the patient doesn't need a toe tag before he comes up with a solution.

Re:Ok come down hard on MCAT but not for other tes (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304154)

Regardless of their field of expertise, no professional on Earth can be expected to know all the answers off the top of their head. However every professional should be expected to know how to find the answer in a timely manner. Debugging a human is much more difficult than debugging a PC, so for MD's in particular this often includes "reading manuals" or referring the patient to a specialist (ie: "asking experts").

Re:Ok come down hard on MCAT but not for other tes (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303330)

Lots tests are based on cramming for the test and lead to people who can pass the test but they are clueless on what the test covers.

The tests are designed to be cost-effective, not insightful.

Take this FA as an example: select people that don't think much and the "security" is so much cheaper. As for the persons that do think (graduates or not)... heck, name them hackers and be done with them, they don't make good consumers.

Re:Ok come down hard on MCAT but not for other tes (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303506)

Indeed, and cramming is a legitimate response if not the desired one. The same goes for all those high value tests, GRE, MCAT, TOEFL, SAT, ACT etc.

I'd personally have no ethical qualms teaching students strategies for maximizing their scores, mainly because that's what everybody else is going and the tests themselves do nothing to discourage it. But, cheating is a completely different matter.

Re:Ok come down hard on MCAT but not for other tes (1)

brainzach (2032950) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304072)

The consequences of these tests affect people's careers so cheating is a really big deal.

Licensing organizations take great efforts in maintaining the integrity of their exams because they can get sued if individuals get an unfair advantage/disadvantage. The consequences result in people wrongfully losing their jobs or companies hiring someone unqualified for the position.

Wrong Line of Work (2)

Nefarious Wheel (628136) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303230)

I think the cheaters probably have a much more rewarding career ahead of them with an organisation such as the CIA or ASIO.

Re:Wrong Line of Work (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303274)

I think the cheaters probably have a much more rewarding career ahead of them with an organisation such as the CIA or ASIO.

What are you trying to say? Are CIA/ASIO glad with employees without brains?

Re:Wrong Line of Work (1)

MaskedSlacker (911878) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303524)

Sure. Who else are they going to hire as designated fall guys for when excrement encounters rotary cooling devices? Granted, they wouldn't want all their employees to be this dumb, but having a subset of their employees like this seems obviously beneficial. The guys are technically competent, and logistically incompetent. IE, they'd make perfect fall guys--capable of performing their technical jobs, but not capable of outplanning their bosses when they've been setup to fail.

Re:Wrong Line of Work (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303318)

Would have had. I doubt the CIA would hire someone who got caught cheating.

Re:Wrong Line of Work (4, Informative)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303516)

Indeed, the CIA actually wants people that know what they're doing. They'll train agents on any cheating and trickery that's necessary to do their job, but most agents don't need that type of thing for their jobs. The CIA employs a surprising number of people in support roles doing things like analysis.

Re:Wrong Line of Work (2)

bosef1 (208943) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303518)

Would that involve promotion as GLG-20 field agents?

so much trouble (5, Insightful)

theCat (36907) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303236)

That was a really elaborate ruse. With that much free time to cook up something like that, you'd think they could ... oh I don't know ... maybe just study for the test?

Or maybe the cheaters were just working up a movie script idea. Do a few months in the slammer, sell the rights, then buy a really good test tutor for next time.

Re:so much trouble (2)

Ruke (857276) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303322)

The MCAT is incredibly difficult. If you don't know the answers, there is very little room to use your multiple-choice-guessing skills like you were able to do on the SAT. Someone who - let's be realistic - probably cheated their way through their undergrad has just about zero chance of getting a score good enough to get into any medical school.

I don't know what the moral here is, though. Cheaters never prosper? That can't be right... Cheaters seldom prosper? No...

Ah: When cheaters fail, they do so spectacularly.

Re:so much trouble (4, Insightful)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303388)

The secret to a good score on the MCAT is to ignore verbal (everyone does very well, so the difference between an 11 and a 14 is not how many you answered wrong, but which specific question you got wrong) and know chemistry and physics cold. The Physical Sciences is nothing but chem and physics, and Biological Sciences includes organic.

Yeah, if you're dead-set on a top-ten school, the mid-30s score might not cut it, but it will get you into one of your state's allopathic schools - and unless you are sure you want an academic career, where you went to school matters far less than what your Step 1 and 2CK scores are when it's time to find a residency.

Re:so much trouble (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303438)

Yep, if you're mediocre, being on the long tail doesn't matter. What a...mediocre insight.

Re:so much trouble (1)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303944)

The long tail of what?

Once you're acing physical sciences, you can turn to biological as the next most valuable study area. Or don't you believe in using time wisely?

Re:so much trouble (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303520)

Or, just become a naturopath. Who needs to understand chemistry, physics, or biology anyway?

Re:so much trouble (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303996)

Or become a chiropracter. There all manner of witch doctors out there and no lack of "schools" willing to pass out "degrees" for them.

Re:so much trouble (1)

ue85 (1961968) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304032)

A lot of medical schools are now throwing out all scores BUT verbal so I wouldn't take this advice.

Re:so much trouble (1)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304202)

That may be true - I've no way to know - though my advice really is only about the best way to get a higher overall score. Most premeds major in biology to try to get a leg up on the med school courses (not a bad idea, really, because it does work), but correspondingly stint chemistry and physics (because there's precious little of either in med school). There's thus a slight competitive edge to doing well where they do poorly - in particular, the existence of organic chemistry in the biological sciences section made those questions extremely valuable, because they gained high discriminatory index and boosted scores quite a lot. I got an 11 in biological sciences (long, long ago) while taking freshman-level biology, just because of my chemical background.

Have they so mangled the test that it no longer works like this?

Remote Location Nurse Job (1)

Trivial Solutions (1724416) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303264)

Their IT skills and organization skills seem good. They might make good remote-location medicine nurses or something.

Re:Remote Location Nurse Job (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303346)

Their IT skills and organization skills seem good. They might make good remote-location medicine nurses or something.

They don't place jails in penal colonies anymore.

Good news story, not really that serious. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303344)

I think the only real crime was duping those people into thinking they were applying for a job, and they certainly got sweet, hilarious revenge.

This was just an admissions exam. Basically a soft wall to keep the real dumb asses out of medical school. Even if they had succeeded in cheating they would've still had to deal with... you know... getting accepted and going through all of medical school.

Quite Scary Actually (4, Insightful)

casings (257363) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303406)

The only reason they were caught is because those helping weren't in on it. That's a very scary thought, because I'm sure for the right price, this could very well be done.

Re:Quite Scary Actually (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303446)

Right! Cheating is the least of their dysfunctional illiteracies, compared to stupid, greedy, and unimaginative.
sheesh, what a bunch of losers.

Re:Quite Scary Actually (1)

Alien Being (18488) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304208)

These are the ones who got caught. Some got away with it and their patients are the losers.

Re:Quite Scary Actually (3, Interesting)

bughunter (10093) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303604)

Aye, similar to my reaction, which was, "The real story here is that there is a market for this kind of cheating assistance. How many unqualified people have made it past MCAT screening this way? Have any of them provided care for me or my loved ones?"

Every country gets the govt it deserves (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303470)

IF the govt is involved in 3+ wars which nobody wants. We bail out corrupt banks. Why can't the small guy do the same thing. It's the American way !!!

Where do you think all these corrupt people came from? From the very middle class that is just has corrupt but denies it. Most people would steal. IDIOTS you can't steal unless you have opportunity.

Re:Every country gets the govt it deserves (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303566)

Except this was someone with an arab-sounding name in Canada.

And for some insight about this neck of the woods, the universities in BC are very geared to medical and biology research (particularly UVic and UBC) , even if you live in a rinkydink city away from Vancouver and Victoria, chances are the college will have more than half their spaces dedicated to nursing. In high school we have (only) AP Biology. Pretty much if you live in BC your career track is in medicine by default if you aren't going into trades. If you want to persue anything else, you get no help or encouragement.

But enough of that soapbox rant. We don't even know if that was a Canadian or just an international student. The universities and colleges in BC are hosts to more foreign students than locals. This isn't necessarily bad, but I sure hope the taxpayers aren't paying for this.

Immediately thought of Ender's Game (2)

amarkham (153845) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303480)

The real question is what opportunities lie in leveraging an Ender's Game-like approach to solving problems. Obviously cheating on tests is one of the, what about productive approaches?

If you cheat in engineering or medicine... (3, Insightful)

bmo (77928) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303624)

...or chemistry, or pharmacy, or anything else dealing with human lives directly or indirectly at the end of the chain:

You don't belong in the profession.

You are going to kill people. No question. Someday you will kill someone with your incompetence.

--
BMO

Re:If you cheat in engineering or medicine... (2)

sulfur (1008327) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303730)

What qualifications are required to get into the military? I don't think they are comparable to either PE or M.D. (and thus may not induce cheating), yet military personnel in some cases may have more potential of killing "wrong" people.

Difference is, then it's on purpose. (1)

zooblethorpe (686757) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303814)

What qualifications are required to get into the military?

Yah, but in many cases, a soldier messing up means missing the target and *not* killing someone. Almost the opposite of fraudulent medicine.

Cheers,

Re:If you cheat in engineering or medicine... (3, Insightful)

bmo (77928) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303964)

As if the military gives cheating a pass.

They know *exactly* what cheating gets you - dead friendlies.

You cheat on an exam at a military school (electrician school, etc) and the consequences will be quite severe.

The last thing the Navy wants (for example) is an electrician's mate on a submarine that cheated on his exams.

Try dishonorable discharge, after serving time.

--
BMO

Re:If you cheat in engineering or medicine... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36304164)

a simple lie will get you booted from any of the service academies...

Honestly (1)

Xacid (560407) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303732)

Honestly - I'd almost like to see some sort of charges/significant fines pressed against these people.

Re:Honestly (1)

Alien Being (18488) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304216)

I'd like to see medical malpractice victims get some free scalpel practice.

good for them! (1)

ThorGod (456163) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303736)

As a guy who endured a poor GPA all through college because of his morals, I'm glad their "tutors" caught on and put the cheaters in their place.

Re:good for them! (1)

dcollins (135727) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303824)

"As a guy who endured a poor GPA all through college because of his morals..."

WTF does that mean? It makes you sound like a self-deluded idiot. Seriously.

Re:good for them! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36303948)

that just means you weren't smart enough to do well, and you also weren't smart enough to cheat.

congratulations at being a self-defeating loser.

The MCAT is crap (4, Insightful)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303774)

Pre-med students spend their undergraduate days obsessing over that test, learning how to memorize and regurgitate - but not comprehend - information for it. Pre-med students don't care whether they understand the material they take in school, as long as they pass the MCAT and pull the GPA that they need for the med school they want to go to.

This is not the way we should select who our new doctors will be. We are screening for automatons when we should be screening for thinkers. Cheaters like this are exactly what the MCAT is pretty well looking for - people who will do just the right amount of work to pass the test, without bothering to comprehend the information that it is supposed to be testing people on.

Re:The MCAT is crap (1)

NoKaOi (1415755) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303980)

This is not the way we should select who our new doctors will be.

Then it's a good thing doctors aren't granted board certification immediately following a good score on the MCAT. The MCAT is simply an indicator that, along with a high GPA, means you have better chance of success in medical school than somebody else with a lower GPA and MCAT score. They still have to do well in med school. Fail at that, and your out. Succeed in med school and you still have to demonstrate competency as a resident. Sure, you can cheat your way through undergrad, cheat your way on the MCAT, and probably even cheat your way though med school, but fortunately, it's a lot harder to cheat your way through residency. Sure, like any profession there are bad doctors out there, but at least doctors have a much more stringent screening process and training process than most other professions.

Re:The MCAT is crap (1)

demonlapin (527802) | more than 3 years ago | (#36304084)

We are screening for automatons when we should be screening for thinkers.

Please tell me how you can efficiently screen for this. For current med school freshmen in the AAMC schools, there were 42742 applicants (31834 of whom were first-time applicants). There were 18665 matriculants. (Source [aamc.org] ) The MCAT allows schools to reject clearly unqualified applicants out of hand, while interviewing a group of people that actually stand a good chance of doing well.

Pre-med students are merely training for what life is like in med school, and they are demonstrating adaptive behaviors for those who wish to succeed in an environment that is effectively zero-sum: at the end of the day, my doing better means that someone else is worse off, and vice versa. There are only so many slots in the really competitive residencies, and so you either get one - or you do not.

TL;DR: don't hate the player, hate the game.

Re:The MCAT is crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36304184)

We are screening for automatons when we should be screening for thinkers.

So in other words, just like Information Technology.

Cheating? In OUR schools? (1)

Renraku (518261) | more than 3 years ago | (#36303888)

Let's face it.

Cheating in college is rampant, it's just that most people are good at it.

Like how you'll study your ass off at a test and get a 30, which was pretty high all things considered, then there's a group of Chinese students that get 100 on it but can't answer even basic questions about the material if you come to them and ask them since they did so.

Or how companies complain that they'll hire an engineer who will have a degree and good GPA but doesn't even have a basic grasp of how their field of engineering works.

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