This project changed a number of times over it's development. It began as an attempt to create a simulator for cheating in examinations environments, this progressed into a modelling of cheating using Stochastic Petri Nets, and finally became an investigation of cheating using Information Theory, Steganography and understandings of knowledge.


Academic integrity is the moral code that controls the conduct of those involved in academia, committing them to honesty and fairness. An institute that lacks integrity will develop a reputation for dishonesty and works produced by that university will likely be distrusted by academics from other institutions. This principle extends to the production of educated minds by an institution. In order to ensure a positive reputation an institution must ensure that all graduates deserve their degrees. To achieve this the institution must enforce academic integrity amongst its candidates.

The act of skewing assessment in one's favour, called cheating, is in direct conflict with academic integrity. Cheating in a traditional examination (where written questions require written answers) is defined as access to information that is external to a candidate's knowledge. Accessing this external information despite the restrictions of the examination environment is referred to as the cheating problem.

A cheater is attempting to receive that which they do not deserve through dishonesty. This makes cheating a concern of all academic institutes and considerable research has been performed with the aim of understanding cheating. Research attempts to answer questions similar to "Why do students cheat?", "How do students justify cheating morally?" and "Is cheating socially acceptable?" by performing surveys and interviews with students. While these questions should be asked, they do not question or study the techniques used by students to solve the cheating problem. An investigation of cheating that attempts to classify, understand, and identify their limitations of cheating is non-existent.