Searching for Answers: Academic Integrity Across States and Cities

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Searching for Answers: Academic Integrity Across States and Cities

In our educational system, which is increasingly reliant on digital resources, a concerning trend has emerged: a significant rise in online searches for terms linked to academic dishonesty. At Top Tier Tutoring, we sought to uncover the places in the United States where students appear most likely to cheat based on online searches. Beyond these states and cities, we also examined the subjects and assignment formats most susceptible to academic dishonesty.

Utilizing Google Trends data from 2022 to 2023, we analyzed search volumes for terms like “plagiarism remover” and “AI essay writer,” covering all 50 states and the 50 most populated U.S. cities. Some of the terms were clearly linked to cheating, while others could possibly indicate that a student was just looking for help. Our study offers a revealing view of the current state of academic ethics and highlights the potential need for intervention in specific areas. Join us as we navigate these insightful findings, shedding light on today’s educational challenges.


Key Takeaways


  • New York is the state searching the most for academic assistance terms.
  • Miami is the city searching the most for academic assistance terms.
  • Miami, Atlanta, and Tampa are the top 3 cities cheating with AI for essay writing, according to search volume data.
  • The number of searches related to using AI for academic assistance has increased by 2,079% in the U.S. over the past year.
  • Students are searching for assistance with math the most.


Academic Assistance Seekers Across the Map

To begin, let’s explore which states and cities are searching the most for academic help, whether for learning purposes or cheating on exams, assignments, or quizzes.

Map with search volume data for academic assistance.

New York made the most searches for academic assistance from 2022 to 2023, with 11,395 searches per 100,000 residents. Based on the search terms in our study, this finding suggests that New York students are struggling the most, either needing help with schoolwork or resorting to using online resources to cheat.

Florida and New Jersey followed closely at 11,043 and 11,013 searches per 100,000 residents, respectively. Maryland, Texas, and California rounded out the top five states most likely to cheat based on these searches. These findings are based on a comprehensive analysis of online search behaviors, which showed an unusually high volume of queries related to academic dishonesty in these states.

We also analyzed search volume within the 50 most populous U.S. cities for the same period. The top 10 cities with the most academic help searches per capita included:

1. Miami, FL

2. Atlanta, GA 

3. Tampa, FL

4. Baltimore, MD

5. Boston, MA

6. Minneapolis, MN

7. Washington, D.C.

8. Arlington, TX

9. New York, NY

10. Seattle, WA


Students in these cities might require additional resources like tutoring to enhance their comprehension of the material and successfully complete their school assignments without cheating. Explore the interactive table below to see how the rest of America’s major cities fared.

Next, we’ll examine what people searched for over the past year related to academic assistance. We’ll also review how much their searches have increased from 2022 to 2023, indicating trends and topics educators may need to address with their students.

Search terms for academic assistance.

Our study of the top academic assistance search terms revealed a notable interest in math help and solutions. For those seeking expert guidance, turning to tutors for subjects from Common Core math to trigonometry instead of relying solely on online resources can offer a more personalized and effective learning experience.

Artificial intelligence (AI) advancements are quickly transforming various aspects of life in America, particularly in education. We found that searches for “AI essay writer” soared to over 540,000 between 2022 and 2023, marking an increase of 2,951% from the previous year. This trend points to students’ widespread use of AI for completing their assignments. The high number of searches for plagiarism checkers and paraphrasing tools also hints at students using or reworking others’ words and presenting them as their own.

Narrowing our view again to the top 50 most populated cities in the U.S., we identified Miami as the city most prone to academic dishonesty based on the high number of searches for AI essay writing tools. Atlanta, Georgia, and Tampa, Florida, were ranked second and third, respectively, as cities with potentially the highest number of students cheating in writing. These are concerning findings, especially since using AI makes it harder to detect plagiarism

Infographic on writing cheating by city.

Interestingly, Miami, Florida, and Arlington, Texas, were the cities most associated with searches for plagiarism removal tools. Meanwhile, Washington, D.C., and Virginia Beach, Virginia, residents showed the highest propensity for seeking online homework solutions. This data sets the stage for a deeper exploration of the implications and potential solutions to this issue, as it affects various regions.


Asking AI for Support

Let’s now broaden our view and look at the searches related to using AI for academic assistance nationwide.

Infographic on top states and cities with the highest increase in searches ai assistance.

A staggering 2,079% increase in searches related to AI for academic assistance across the U.S. over the past year unveils another dimension of this problem. This surge underscores an increasing number of students turning to AI as an educational tool. 

Utah, Florida, and Louisiana led the states in this trend, potentially indicating a large number of students looking to complete their academic work with the help of AI. As for the cities, the data told a similar story: New York, Los Angeles, Houston, and Atlanta topped the list of cities where students have been most likely to seek academic assistance from AI. 

This trend of turning to AI for academic assistance reflects a broader conversation about the evolving role of technology in education. It raises questions about the ethical implications and the need for guidelines to ensure that AI aids, rather than undermines, the educational process.


Top Subjects in Demand

Building on the sharp rise in AI-related academic assistance searches, the final part of our analysis sheds light on the subjects and types of assignments where students seek the most online help.

Infographic on top subjects and assignments.

With over 1.1 million searches in the past year, math dominated the subjects included in our analysis. Other studies also indicate that American students struggle with math, threatening the nation’s global economic competitiveness and national security. Many students turned to online resources for guidance in science, including math-heavy subjects like physics and chemistry.

In terms of assignments, the data reveals a diverse range of needs. Essays, research papers, quizzes, and exams were the formats most commonly associated with search queries for assistance. This variety indicates that students are not just struggling with one type of task but require help across different academic work, underscoring today’s widespread educational challenges.


The Future of Academic Integrity

Academic integrity may be shifting, with a marked increase in the reliance on AI and online resources for academic assistance. From the soaring searches for “AI essay writer” to the specific focus on subjects like math and science, the trends we uncovered are revealing and concerning. States like New York, Florida, New Jersey, Maryland, Texas, and California are at the forefront of this shift, reflecting a broader national movement toward digital academic solutions.

This reliance on AI and online tools poses significant questions about the future of education and the role of technology in learning. While these tools offer unprecedented access to information and assistance, they also challenge the traditional boundaries of academic integrity.



For this campaign, we analyzed Google Trends data from 2022 to 2023 to measure the search volume of different terms relating to academic assistance across all 50 states and the 50 most populated U.S. cities. Percentage change calculations were based on comparing the first 10 months of 2022 to those of 2023.


About Top Tier Tutoring

Top Tier Tutoring empowers students through personalized, one-on-one academic support and test preparation services. Our expert tutors strive to elevate learning experiences, fostering both academic success and personal growth in their students.


Fair use statement

As academic integrity evolves, we invite you to share the insights from our study with your readers for any non-commercial use. Please include a link back to this page so your audience can access our complete findings about the nuances of this important issue.

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