The Columbia Journalism School has a cheating scandal afoot in — of all places — its ethics class, "Critical Issues in Journalism." Mighty Jeff Bercovici broke the news on Radar Online yesterday afternoon, and the Times rereported it this morning. All members of the Friday section of the class were required to attend a special meeting today, at which the cheating allegation was discussed and a new essay question was distributed. The e-mail calling the meeting, posted today on the Observer's Media Mob blog, warned students that administrators "will not register a passing grade in the course for anyone who does not attend." Which prompted some j-school alumni friends of ours to point out an interesting quirk. The j-school requires 30 credits for graduation, but most students, according to the school's own propaganda, complete 34 credits or more. Which means it's entirely possible to fail the class — that is, to be an ethical failure — and to still become a Columbia-certified journalist. Ain't this a great business?
Ivy J-Schoolers Fail Ethics, Ace Irony [Radar]
Cheating on an Ethics Test? It's 'Topic A' at Columbia [NYT]
Columbia J-School: Exam Do-Over [Media Mob/NYO]