On November 10, 2023, soldiers of the Military Police detained 8 cadets studying at the Jarosław Dąbrowski Military University of Technology in Warsaw on suspicion of committing a crime during an English language exam conducted in accordance with STANAG 6001 standards1 .
The procedure carried out by the examining cadets involved the use of illegal practices with the use of technical means of providing video and audio (smartphones), through which they obtained additional assistance to enable them to complete the submitted STANAG 6001 exam sheets2 . Those in possession of the devices also prompted their colleagues for the correct answers. Accordingly, both the soldiers with smartphones and all the prompters committed fraud that was reported to the Military Police3 .
The detained soldiers were charged with attempting to extort false statements in a certificate stating the achievement of a certain level of English language proficiency, as well as aiding and abetting the above–mentioned crime of providing information by telephone during the exam to enable examinees to fill out answer sheets, i.e., committing crimes under Article 18 § 3 of the CC in conjunction with Article 272 of the CC and Article 13 § 1 of the CC. in conjunction with Article 272 of the CC4 . At present, the Military Police is involved in analyzing the evidence and does not rule out bringing charges against a larger group of examined soldiers5 .
An official statement on the matter was issued by the Military University of Technology via a post published on X (formerly Twitter). The university’s authorities said that they condemn the behavior of the cadets being examined and will not accept manifestations of cheating during the STANAG 6001 English exam, as it is against the rules of the university’s regulations. Moreover, the attitude of the military officers was considered unworthy of university students. The Military University of Technology has declared that it will actively counter similar practices in the future6 .
The STANAG 6001 standard is the foreign language proficiency examinations in the national defense ministry organized on the basis of the guidelines of the ‘NATO STANAG 6001 Standardization Agreement – Language Proficiency Levels’. The individual foreign language proficiency requirements are included in the form of a combination of four digits, which refer to individual language skills in the following order: listening, speaking, reading, writing. The digits indicate the level of language skills. There are five levels of language proficiency7 :
– Level 1 – basic knowledge;
– Level 2 – intermediate knowledge (active to a limited extent);
– Level 3 – advanced knowledge (professional minimum);
– Level 4 – proficient (fully professional) knowledge;
– Level 5 – excellent (native user/bilingual level).
Examinations in English at Levels 3 and 4, as well as extramural examinations at Levels 1–3 in other languages, are conducted exclusively by the Central Examination Commission for Foreign Languages of the Ministry of Defense in Łódź.
1 M. Nycz, Scandal at WAT. Cadets cheated on English exam, online – https://www.rmf24.pl/regiony/warszawa/news-skandal-na-wat-podchorazowie-oszukiwali-na-egzaminie-z-angie,nId,7150652#crp_state=1 [accessed: 16.11.2023].
2 TVN Warsaw, They cheated on the English exam. WAT cadets detained by gendarmes, online – https://tvn24.pl/tvnwarszawa/najnowsze/warszawa-oszukiwali-na-egzaminie-z-angielskiego-podchorazowie-z-wat-zatrzymani-przez-zandarmow-7440398 [accessed: 16.11.2023].
3 Official website of the Polish Army, Message from the Military Police, online – https://www.wojsko-polskie.pl/kgzw/articles/aktualnosci-w/5-komunikat-zandarmerii-wojskowej/ [accessed: 16.11.2023].
5 E. Korsak, WAT students in the hands of gendarmes, online V https://polska-zbrojna.pl/home/articleshow/40695?t=Studenci-WAT-w-rekach-zandarmow [accessed: 16.11.2023].
6 Official profile of the Military University of Technology on X (formerly Twitter), online – https://twitter.com/WAT_edu?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1724529818841047509%7Ctwgr%5E02157e780af84dd338d73b917b918fdce8da3547%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.rmf24.pl%2Fregiony%2Fwarszawa%2Fnews-skandal-na-wat-podchorazowie-oszukiwali-na-egzaminie-z-angienId7150652 [accessed: 16.11.2023].
7 Military Foreign Language Study, STANAG 6001, online – https://wsnjo.wp.mil.pl/pl/pages/stanag-6001-2020-05-04-1/ [accessed: 16.11.2023].
Photo: WATBIPredakcja, Military University of Technology – main building, online – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wojskowa_Akademia_Techniczna_główny_budynek_Rektorat.jpg [accessed: 17.11.2023].
Tekst powstał w ramach realizacji zadania publicznego zleconego w ramach Rządowego Programu Rozwoju Organizacji Obywatelskich na lata 2018–2030 r. „Bezpieczna Polska jutra – rozwój działań misyjnych Alioth Foundation”.