The controversial photo on FacebookSOME photos are better kept in remembrance.

A digital image that showed a class at the College of Commerce and Business Administration wearing improvised “anti-cheating devices” –– cardboards on both sides of the head –– during a seatwork has drawn flak from Facebook users who condemned it as a “harsh measure.”

Edwin Suson, professor of Commerce, claimed responsibility for the anti-cheating devices, but argued the photo was “blown out of context by some Facebook users.”

“I asked my students to craft their own ‘creative anti cheating device,’ but after being advised by a colleague in the college to suspend the measure, I told [them] that the device would no longer be used,” he said.

But the students had finished making the device before Suson backtracked. “I was not even present during the time they took the picture because I had an appointment in another school,” he said.

Brian Presto, president of the Commerce class, rushed to Suson’s defense.

“Suson asked our consent before implementing the anti-cheating device, and we all agreed,” Presto said.

Senior marketing students who acted as proctors during the seatwork told them to wear the cardboards, he added.

But, Shaira Go, one of the two proctors, said: “Many of them were already wearing the device before we came. They were the ones who gave us the camera and asked to take pictures of them.”

Suson said students even showed the picture to him before they uploaded it to the social networking site.

“Some students even took solo shots as remembrance,” he added.

Suson said this was not the first time he asked students to make such a device for a test.

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“In 2005, I also used the device in a quiz. After seeing that while it was already an ‘open book and open formula exam,’ students would still look at their classmate’s answers,” he said.

No complaints were lodged, he said.

Commerce Dean Helena Ma. Cabrera said she and the faculty council would discuss Suson’s fate.

“The professor, who was very innovative, was trying to prevent cheating. The intention was good but the way it looked was inappropriate,” Cabrera said.

Suson said he would accept the consequences of his “creative” idea.

Joyce Llana, Commerce Student Welfare Development Board (SWDB) coordinator, said her office could act only on complaints filed against students.

“If a professor saw a student cheating, he could file a complaint to the SWDB,” she said. “But if there is a complaint against the professor, it should be filed with the dean.”

Last September, Facebook was also used as a venue for complaints by Thomasian car owners who were still charged by the multi-deck carpark administration despite being stranded because of tropical storm “Ondoy,” which left 3,000 people trapped inside the University campus.


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