GMIT cheating probe puts focus on Facebook post

GMIT Registrar Michael Hannon: has made a plea to students.

GMIT officials are relying on an alleged Facebook post as the basis of their investigation into the latest cheating scandal to rock the college.

College Registrar Michael Hannon has pleaded with students to trawl their Facebook accounts for any evidence and to come forward ahead of a Disciplinary Committee meeting next week.

The Galway City Tribune understands that four students are accused of having seen an examination paper in advance of the end-of-year exams in May, and will all be interviewed on Monday. The students maintain their innocence.

An outcome to the investigation is expected on Monday, as exam results have to be approved by the Programme Boards from Monday week to Wednesday week (September 12 to 14), with results available to students on Friday 16th.

A spokesperson for GMIT said it would be inappropriate to comment, but issued a statement to say students are obliged to pass on information on cheating to authorities.

Last May, this newspaper revealed that more than 120 students in the fourth year Bachelor of Business Studies course who sat the ‘tainted’ Enterprise and IT Management exam were told they would have to re-sit their exams because of an “exams security breach”.

However, following publication of the story, college authorities rowed back on their decision and allowed for a grade to be given based on continuous assessment coursework and projects – this caused alarm amongst staff at the college who said it called into question the entire examinations process.

Last week, Mr Hannon sent an email to all of the 4th Year students on the course, telling them they may not realise the significance of a “particularly relevant” Facebook post.

“I am making one final appeal to those of you in possession of information to come forward. You may not realise the significance of the information you have, but I can assure you it all adds up to form a complete picture.”

For more on the investigation, see this week’s Galway City Tribune