The Ghostwriter

Have you ever wondered just who writes those papers handed in by cheating students? An?article in The Chronicle of Higher Education, written by a writer for a “custom-essay company,” has some answers for you. Calling himself Ed Dante (clever!), he?tells the story of one paper he wrote: “The 75-page paper on business ethics ultimately expanded into a 160-page graduate thesis, every word of which was written by me. I can’t remember the name of my client, but it’s her name on my work. We collaborated for months.” Dante writes that cheating is particularly prevalent in the education field: “I’ve written papers for students in elementary-education programs, special-education majors, and ESL-training courses. I’ve written lesson plans for aspiring high-school teachers, and I’ve synthesized reports from notes that customers have taken during classroom observations. I’ve written essays for those studying to become school administrators, and I’ve completed theses for those on course to become principals. In the enormous conspiracy that is student cheating, the frontline intelligence community is infiltrated by double agents.” (HT: Marginal Revolution) [%comments]

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  1. Al Dente. says:

    No, no, no.

    I write Ed Dante’s stuff.

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  2. Ike says:

    Being a teacher this sickens me.

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  3. Ian Kemmish says:

    Either every word was his, or else they collaborated. Both cannot simultaneously be true (except in the most trivial and superficial sense).

    We already know he’s ethically challenged, and he’s been caught out in a lie. Why believe a single word he writes in what he presumably regards as free advertising for his services?

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  4. WOW says:

    Being a teacher, you have awful sentence structure.

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  5. Billie Criswell says:

    As a writer who often takes ghostwriting jobs, I think that this particular writer puts money over morality. I would never take a job writing a student’s paper, or a teacher’s lesson plan–though I have certainly seen the ads for such jobs out there.

    I would rather have less money and more integrity. But, honestly, any way you cut it, ghostwriting in a generally thankless job, and a type of writing that I do not prefer. My ghostwriting jobs include blogging and writing newsletters–something that I hope I won’t have to do once I am in a better financial position…. because, seriously, who wants someone else taking credit for their work?!

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  6. Tim Vaughan says:

    As a karate expert, I agree that this is absolutely appalling.

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  7. david f says:

    why am i not surprised?

    our students cheat, and their educators and administrators cheat.

    and then we wonder why we’re falling behind the rest of the world.

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  8. RB says:

    This does not surprise me. In undergrad and law school, I was forever running into classmates who I would describe as illterate (in the true sense of the word that means “unable to write”). I am now part-time adjunct professor at a commuter law school. Two-thirds of my students cannot not write a succint, coherent email, let alone a legal memo or brief.

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