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'I'm telling you, I haven't got an iPad!' – Sent from my iPad

doublelayer Silver badge

It may be, but unless there's someone else doing the real work on it to make sure it stays working, some of the students might get caught in the trap while it's still in operation. An environment through which students must submit work is a very important thing in education, and when it breaks there can be large problems.

I am young enough that I've used such systems during my own schooling, and two events of problematic failures come readily to mind. First, there was the time when the system simply refused to accept uploaded documents. Every week, starting around 10:00 in the morning and ending at midnight or possibly later. The homework was due at midnight. I don't know how many students were thrown by this, but I had to email my professor with the documents and promise to try again later and that the files would be identical (fortunately this was accepted). The second time concerned a system for automatically detecting plagiarism which reported, on our class's final papers, nearly universal plagiarism. In fact, we had all committed exactly the crimes of which it was accusing us, namely we had copied, with only slight modifications, large chunks of other documents. Those other documents were our drafts for the same paper, which also got submitted into this system's big database. Worryingly, it seemed we had also plagiarized smaller sections from certain works which all seemed to be between quotation marks. Funnily enough, I don't remember that system being used for many other courses.

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