Newspaper headlines: Student 'cheating crisis', lotto 'balls-up' and Natalie Cole tributes.

With Saturday's papers divided in their choice of top story, the Times leads with the headline: "Student cheating crisis".

It says almost 50,000 students at British universities have been caught cheating in the last three years - though less than 400 have been expelled.

There are fears of a plagiarism "epidemic" disproportionately fuelled by foreign students, with those from outside the EU most likely to cheat, it says.

One university staff member tells the paper the "copying and pasting" approach to cheating is becoming less common, and is being replaced by students paying to have essays written.

Freelance academics charge anything from £10 to £20,000 for coursework answers, dissertations and even an "80,000-word PhD", the paper reports.

In a comment piece, it says the low proportion of cheats expelled is a "disgrace", and warns that a "culture of cheating" from some other countries is a threat to the integrity and the international "brand" of British higher education.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Hidden notes and secret hand signals were used in exams but most cheating happened in coursework, the Times reports

Lotto 'balls-up'

A "gutted" couple missed out on a £35m lottery jackpot because their phone app account was £1.40 short of the ticket price, the Daily Mirror reports.

It says David and Edwina Nylan said they topped up their account and the sale went through before their six numbers came up - but lottery operator Camelot said their purchase failed.

"We must be the unluckiest people in the UK," Mr Nylan tells the paper.

"Glitch and poor" is the headline in the Daily Star, which says the couple thought they had won until they phoned Camelot and were told their purchase had not gone through.

Natalie Cole tributes

Most of the papers report on the death at 65 of singer Natalie Cole, daughter of Nat King Cole.

The Independent says the "unforgettable" Grammy winner battled drug addiction and suffered from hepatitis C, and her family said she died from complications from ongoing health problems.

Cole sang reworked versions of some of her father's songs, but was best known for her 1975 hit This Will Be (An Everlasting Love), the Daily Express says.

She sang on her father's Christmas album at the age of six, started performing in her own right at 11 and kept that passion "to the end", the Guardian says.

The papers quotes a family statement which says Cole died as she lived - "with dignity, strength and honour".

Image copyright AFP

Eye-catching headlines

  • Lego Death Star dream left in pieces - A seven-year-old Star Wars fan did chores to save up for a £350 Lego Death Star but the set was discontinued before he could buy one, the Mirror reports.
  • On the eighth day of Christmas... Easter eggs went on sale! - The Daily Mail says Easter eggs were spotted on sale at several major stores yesterday - with Good Friday almost three months away.
  • Poshos to hire own cop force - People in one of London's "poshest areas", Hampstead, have raised £210,000 which they hope to use to fund extra police, the Sun says.
  • Half are social media addicts - A study has found almost half of adults fear they are addicted to social media, many have tried and failed to stop and 60% think their friendships are becoming "superficial" due to the way they stay in touch, the Telegraph reports.

Lost inhibitions... and trousers

Hugging a police car was just one of the ways "tipsy revellers" greeted the new year, the Daily Mail reports.

It is one of several papers to publish pictures of Britons partying, passing out and clashing with police.

Young revellers "lost their inhibitions, their balance - and occasionally their trousers" as they celebrated, the Sun says.

Image copyright PA

Britain awoke to 2016 with a hangover, the Express says, after partygoers "spilled out of pubs and clubs to give police and paramedics a headache, leaving the country's streets a shameful scene".

A man was murdered in Sheffield, police cells were full and people were seen lying on roads, the paper adds.

By the time revellers "stumbled into bed" in the early hours of New Year's Day a mammoth clean-up operation was under way, the Independent reports.

It says an "army" of council workers with brooms and bin bags took to the streets, and in London alone an estimated 85 tons of debris had to be collected.

Image copyright PA

'New normal'

New Year's Eve celebrations in Germany were disrupted when two Munich railway stations were closed due to intelligence about an imminent attack by suicide bombers.

"It was just a tweet, but it hit Munich like a thunderbolt," the Financial Times says, referring to a "terse" police message telling people to avoid crowds .

It says a "grim pall" was cast over the city as hundreds of heavily armed police were deployed - and terror warnings "soured the mood" across Europe.

Experts quoted in the Guardian say Europe faces a "new normal" with many terrorism alerts and disruption to major events.

One analyst says terrorists wanting to attack crowded places is "nothing new". The new factor, she says, is that so-called Islamic State has proved itself capable of carrying out such attacks outside the Middle East.

Image copyright Getty Images

'Will I exercise?'

On day two of the new year, the papers continue to offer plenty of advice on how to stick to new year's resolutions.

Anyone keen to help loved ones would be "best advised to not nag", according to US researchers quoted in the Telegraph.

Instead, a "few subtle questions" are the best way to encourage someone to keep up virtuous habits, it says.

Resolutions themselves are better if they are posed as questions rather than statements, according to research reported in the Daily Mail.

But the Express says the trouble with asking "Will I exercise?" is that the answer could be "er... no".


What the commentators say

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionThe Telegraph's chief political correspondent, Christopher Hope, and political commentator Miranda Green join the BBC News Channel to review Saturday's front pages.

'Man stupid!'

A new year's message from a gorilla is one of several animal-themed stories in Saturday's papers.

In a video, 44-year-old Koko - a student of sign language since the age of one - signals "I am gorilla, I am flowers, animals. I am Nature. Koko love man. Earth Koko love," the Mail reports.

But she adds: "Man stupid… stupid! Koko sorry, Koko cry. Time hurry. Fix Earth! Help Earth!"

The Guardian says academic journals have begun withholding the locations of newly discovered species after poachers used information to collect exotic lizards, frogs and snakes.

The information will still be available to scientists on request, the paper adds.

Finally, several papers can't resist familiar puns - locking horns, stuck in a rut - as they picture two stags face to face in Richmond Park, London. Deer oh deer.

Image copyright Reuters

Making people click

Times: Build homes that rise above flood danger, developers told

Mail: New year, but the same old shocking scenes: Mayhem in streets across Britain as drunken revellers lose their senses (and in some cases their trousers)

Mirror: Hero dies saving woman from falling lift telling her "Happy New Year" as he pushed her to safety

Guardian: Sherlock's back and it's fast, fun, flashy, fantastic