GradeBuddy is an online platform for students to access study materials, including notes and study guides. The company also hires students, who can make up to $500 depending on the class, to produce comprehensive notes for every lecture and a study guide for every exam. Students who are not hired can share study materials for credits on the website.
But freshman Matthew Wolffe said he thinks this organization could encourage slacking.
“I feel like this company provides an excuse for kids not to show up to class if they think they can just get the notes and get a good grade that way.”
Jenn Shabani, a spokeswoman for GradeBuddy, said in an email that students must upload notes in their own words.
Shabani said GradeBuddy’s greatest concern is to work with universities.
“We have had professors express their concerns if we provide the study materials for their class students won’t show up to lecture anymore. Having a comprehensive review of your class would not deter a student from attending any more than having a textbook for that class,” she said.
Sophomore Shaza Gaballah said she thinks it sounds cool, but she remembers more when she takes her own notes. She said she thinks this system could run into issues with the Honor Code.
“I’m not really sure how the school would respond to something like that,” she said. “There’s definitely teachers that wouldn’t care and definitely encourage sharing notes within a class, but there’s also teachers who are a lot stricter about it. I feel like it could unnecessarily cause problems.”
Dakota Foard, chairwoman of the Undergraduate Honor Court, said students need to make sure they ask their professors about the website before they use it.
“Whenever you have an outside resource like this, students really need to ask their professors whether or not they are comfortable with it,” she said.
“And I don’t think something like this is necessarily explicitly prohibited in the instrument for all classes, but I do think it’s likely a lot of professors would be uncomfortable with it. And for that reason, I think it’s best to ask their professor if it’s okay.”
Foard stressed there is not an across-the-board policy for passing notes and sharing information, but it is up to individual professors.
It is within the honor system’s jurisdiction to hear cases of students using information from other students who have taken the class though, she said.
“In any situation it’s always better to err on the side of caution, and ask the professor if it’s okay or not.”