Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The "Shadow Scholar" writes tell-all book about term-paper mill that helped students cheat

If you remember the story in the Chronicle of Higher Ed a couple years back in which the author, writing under the pseudonym "Ed Dante," described how he ghost wrote academic papers for everyone from college students to Ph.D. candidates (and everyone in between including law students), you're not alone. It was the most read and commented upon article in CHE history according to the preface of the author's new book "The Shadow Scholar: How I Made a Living Helping College Kids Cheat" due out from Bloomsbury on September 18.  Here's the publisher's description:

Last fall, a writer using the pseudonym Ed Dante wrote an explosive article in The Chronicle of Higher Education, confessing to writing term papers for a living. Technically, they are "study guides," and the companies that sell them-there are quite a few-are completely legal and easily found with Google. For about $10-20 a page, Dante's former employers will give you a custom essay, written to your specifications. During Dante's career, he wrote made-to-order papers for everything from introductory college courses to Ph.D. dissertations. There was never a shortage of demand.

The Shadow Scholar is Dante's account of this dubious but all-too-relevant career. In stories embarrassing, absurd, hilarious, and ultimately sobering, he explores not merely his own misdeeds but the bureaucratic and cash-hungry colleges, lazy students, and even misguided parents who helped make it all possible.

With unemployment pushing 10 percent and many college grads living with their parents, the need for this book has never been more urgent. As this bitingly funny memoir reveals, colleges and graduate schools are victims not merely of tough economic times but of a profound sense of entitlement and apathy. Here is a searing, often maddening indictment of the big business of college.


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