Following up the post about homework question policies, this user has asked 11 questions, all homework in nature, and has not attempted to answer at least some of them, nor tried answering any other questions. This is his latest question on mutant crosses. As for the homework policy, we just shouldn't answer if there's been no attempt at an explanation or solution by the user, but how do we deal with users that only ask homework problems?
A look at physics.se is interesting, because of how much homework questions can this site get and how do they deal with it.
https://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/tagged/homework could become quite a lot, but you can filter -[homework]
The conclusion seems to be:
- allow homework questions (of students(?)), probably high school questions can be answered by textbook\wikipedia and fall into category "not a real question"
- rather explain how to solve the problem than giving out exact calculation\result, SE is a learning site and we all remember the many hours we put ourselves into solving course exercises (imho most important part of your studies) and how important this is to really understand theories, solve problems on your own correctly and graduate successfully.
- the questioner should not simply copy paste a textbook problem, but explain what he tried and his specific problems are, otherwise I tend to downvote or even vote to close as too localized. If we explain misunderstandings, those homework questions might be useful for other user too. So in the best case such homework questions dont look like a homework question ;)
I think this site can be very helpful to students, we should encourage them to come here with specific questions.
That said, students are capable of asking good factual and focused questions. The post you linked to is, most importantly, a bad question for any SE, independent of being copied directly from the user's homework. Why?
- It starts by talking about the student. The bio final has no relevance to the concept.
- It has "Problem:" mid text. This should be implied.
- It includes a table. Never include a table unless the question is specifically about how to read the table. But it's not, it's about...
- ...well, it has three sub-questions.
A repeat user is infinitely better than 11 one-time askers because he can learn. I'd say leave a comment and downvote the question. The SO model is supposed to keep bad users from hurting the site, but it will only work with your feedback.
Accept homeworks only if they are properly referenced. Academic dishonesty to dogs, stop the buck here! Obfuscating homeworks does no good to this site and will not credit the author of the questions. It is better to learn proper references here or the painful way later.
I think all homework questions without references should be banned unless the op acknowledges that s/he cannot offer the refences (sometimes that is the case because the lecturers/teachers want less attention, not to reveal the poor quality of their teaching etc).
Please, drive quality up with references.
homework tag still seems to be strongly underused, and I sense that BioSE has had an increase in (what appears to be) homework/study questions lately. There are users that seem to only post homework questions or obvious study questions (questions that arise during textbook reading), without any reference to how they have tried to solve their problems and without using the homework tag.
I don't know how we should handle this. I find it tricky (and rude) to go in and retag a question to homework when you can only suspect the motivations of the original poster. At the same time, just reposting your homework for others to solve at BioSE (without any attempts of your own) is clearly wrong and against our homework policy.