One of the areas in which there’s still much scope to carry out more research is to analyse the role that friends and family play in the contract cheating process.
There is certainly anecdotal evidence that friends and family are often happy to help out when an assessed piece of work is due. In some cases, this might even be expected.
Given access to someone who has completed a course before, or who is experienced in an area, a piece of coursework can often be completed quickly. And, that’s where the availability of friends and family come in.
Unlike many of the sources that we’ve looked at to analyse the extent of contract cheating, there’s very little of an evidence trail left for this. And, for various reasons, money does not usually change hands. But, this is still work that a student is handing in for academic credit and which they have not produced for themselves. They’ve missed out on the learning and practice opportunities that should be associated with this piece of work and the opportunity at university that they have invested in.
There are many difficulties with getting hold of such information in an accurate fashion, but identifying the role that friends and family play in the learning and contract cheating processes would be a useful piece of research for someone to carry out.