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INTEGRITY Effect and necessity
Why not Cheat? Inferiority's no curse of birth It's laziness and lie So if your soul's of little worth You needn't wonder why C. Green 2009
Why not Cheat? • Cheating and taking shortcuts are products of a flawed cost benefit analysis. • How so? • First, you’re an adolescent, so benefit outweighs cost, as cost has less meaning. • Huh???????
The Pre – Frontal Cortex • The pre-frontal cortex is largely responsible for future thinking- • Conceiving of a future • Planning • Considering the costs of an action • It does not fully develop until age 21-23
The Pre – Frontal Cortex • This is critical because if there is only a dim awareness of consequences and the benefits look tremendous…… • So…..what’s the downside?…..
Why not Cheat? • You cheat yourself out of the skills and habits necessary for real, and lasting success • Hard work builds character • What does this mean? • Simply this: Your tendency to do difficult and or unpleasant work creates an expectation that success requires work - not subterfuge.
Why not Cheat? • You have heard ad infinitum that character counts • Ask yourself this – If I habitually cheat, how will I make it when demands are higher and observation is closer? • The man or woman of character can overcome almost anything with that character – could you do what these two have done?
Why not Cheat? • You form your primary perceptions of the world and how to move through it during adolescence. • Have you ever wondered why your parents don’t enjoy your music? • There is now evidence that part of the brain that develops in later adolescence (16-19) is also associated with musical taste
Why not Cheat? • The music you enjoy during adolescence will likely be the same music you prefer for the rest of your life. • Huh? This isn’t Music class Dr. G……. • Do any of you see a connection? • At the same time you are developing musical preferences, you are ‘hard wiring’ your expectations regarding how you get through life
Why not Cheat? • Here is the problem: Your tendency to cheat rather than do difficult and / or unpleasant work creates an expectation that such behavior is the way to succeed. • Uhhh, so? • People have cheated forever- • They cheated in my day • (clay cheat-sheets under tunics).
Why not Cheat? • The primary differences are: • The ease with which one can cheat • The business model of corrupting your integrity
Why not Cheat? • Web sites ranging from Wikipedia to rambling blogs requiring little more than typing a word or phrase into Google. • These are not peer reviewed and are largely the product of ego rather than scholarship • Web sites with cheat notes and essays for sale. • This is worse than selling your soul- you’re paying them!
Why not Cheat? • “..oftentimes, to win us to our harm,The instruments of darkness tell us truths,Win us with honest trifles, to betray usIn deepest consequence.” Macbeth Act 1 scene 3 - Wm. Shakespeare
Why not Cheat? • A great deal of research has shown that we as humans thrive on challenge. • The need for work has not only been a theme in literature and human history, it is also a theme of biology.
Why not Cheat? • Biosphere 2, an experiment in long term space flight/habitation failed, among the reasons, the larger trees fell down and died. • What did they need and not have? • Adversity – in the form of wind- without it they grew only shallow roots and eventually toppled of their own weight.
BONES • Bones require stress to build more bone through a process called piezoelectricity • The stress of holding up your body, lifting, walking, etc. cause more bone to be laid down where needed, less where not. • This is part of the cause of osteoporosis in older women
Endocrine - Immune Systems • Our various glands and hormones operate on a feedback loop- only producing what is needed by the body • This is the reason long term steroid usage often leads to shrunken testicles in men and hirsutism in women. • Our immune system requires periodic illness/infection (mild ones) to have the strength to ward off invaders.
Nervous System • Learning builds new interneuron connections • What you get from Spark Notes is not learned because it is not interesting – it is only a task. • Real learning (from real reading and real thinking) actually builds better brains. • There is a large body of evidence that it will also lessen the odds of later Alzheimer’s.
Why not Cheat? • Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will be killed. • Every morning a lion wakes up. It knows it must outrun the slowest gazelle or it will starve to death. • It doesn't matter whether you are a lion or gazelle. When the sun comes up, you better start running. • — African Proverb
Why not Cheat? • Through all of these examples, the same theme applies: • We need work and effort • We usually don’t want it • Yet again, we need it. • Cheating provides stress, but not the healthy kind. • It also has long term effects.
Why not Cheat? • Some internal end products of cheating: • Inferior skills • A lack of confidence about your true abilities • Diminished vocabulary • A false belief system that short term outweighs long term gain • A diminished ability to interconnect and analyze information (critical thinking)
Why not Cheat? • Some external end products of cheating: • Limited advancement potential • A lack of genuine (and often useful) respect from your peers and superiors • And all of this will come about after college • And it will likely last the rest of your life • It will be tough enough out there…
Why not Cheat? • OK doc, I’m now too bored to fight; why all this? • Some new wrinkles this year -
Why not Cheat? • This summer I created new tests for most of the novels • There is essentially no overlap of information with cheat notes. • Here is an example: • p. 54 Naomi is describing in great detail the contents of Obasan's refrigerator. What is the thematic tie in of the refrigerator's contents to Obasan? a. "everybody someday dies" b. "would you like some Alberta on that bread?" c. "Difficult people“ d. "It is better to forget"
Why not Cheat? • There will be a strict time limit on each test. • I may let students who are in attendance on the day of the test use their books during the test. • If you are late to class (ASB, BSU, Student store, talking with coach) that is your problem, you will turn in your test with everyone else at the end of the period. • In no case – excused, unexcused, or abducted by Martians, will I allow anyone not present the day of the test to use their book. • Any questions?
Why not Cheat? • I expect there will be quite a few F’s on the first test, fewer on the second. • I hope that from the third on, you will actually read and re-read the books as they are assigned. • Alas, if you insist on failure as your personal style, let’s make sure it is first semester (so that you can still graduate). • If at last cheating is still ok with you, reflect on who else might feel the same way…
Why not Cheat? • It is more important to do the next right thing than to do the next thing right. • The courage to do the honest work to succeed is the only way to ‘grow’ the courage necessary to reach great heights…