Challenges, Google and Morality

Greetings fellow Campers,

What’s your point of view on searching Google for information while completing FCC challenges? It’s clear that copying the answers or looking at them is cheating…

However, what are your morals on searching Google for info about how to approach some small step that may contain the challenge? Are you storing all the regex options, methods, etc, in your memory?

I would like to know what’s your approach :slight_smile:

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the Free Code Camp introduce the Read-Search-Ask pretty soon, and expect students to use it.

Read carefully, read again.
Search on google, on documentation, on the forum, on the guide, on the curriculum, trying to clear your doubts or for whatever you don’t rememeber how it works.
Ask on the forum if it wasn’t enough.


I think there’s a solid consensus around using google as a resource: Don’t copy snippets and claim them as your own. Simply put.

However, sometimes, just like in written languages, an expressed thought is so common that it’s accepted as common knowledge. It’s same case with coming across the solution when researching into a challenge. These solutions are so common among solutions that you couldn’t consider these being specific work to one individual. Well maybe to some pioneering computer scientist who first came up with the algorithm but that idea was public domain a long time ago.

Straying off the moral compass would be : a.) blatantly ripping the solution and pasting into your solution with no understanding how it works and then b.) claiming you came up with it on your own.


Learning how to search for and understand outside resources effectively is an important part of programming. You will not be able to complete all of the freeCodeCamp projects without doing research.


for me it’s like a maze, you can’t always get the right answer for a problem and sometimes you need to get help from google, it’s not about completing FCC challenges it’s about understand each problem and the best way to handle it, even pros uses google to look for solutions for there coding problems, so learning how to solve problem using google can make you understand more about the language that you’re trying to learn.


Hi !

I find it is a really complex question because there are so much elements which can influence the search

For example, when you are stuck on a piece of code or don’t figure how something works, you try for hours, maybe days (!) to find the correct answer.
After eating many hairs, you ask someone or google - which is different, sometimes asking google means a travel for many hours to find the “correct” answer with the “correct” keywords", you have the piece you need, you find it dumb, you are frustrated ++ but, you can continue and move forward.
It is a kind of “cheating” ?

By cheat, do you also mean : you are not able to find the correct answer only by yourself ?

How much things should you try before asking or searching ?
And how much time should you search by yourself before ask someone ?
If you search about answer (but no “pure” copy/paste) for a challenge, but you are able to understand and transpose the logic into another one later, is it cheating ?

If something looks unclear, please ask for precision, I’m not super good to express clear-ideas :slight_smile:


Looking up how to do things on Google is good. It becomes a problem if you are only copying the solutions you find on Google rather than adapting them and learning.


Using information for learning…In that case all learning is cheating. Plain copying though I agree is cheating.