June 24, 2017
June 24, 2017
June 28, 2017
Cheating has unfortunately been a perpetual issue in education. Headlines through the decades and generations often seem to imply that the next upcoming crop of students is far worse, much less virtuous, and more prone to try and skate by through cheating than prior generations. The current project intends to collect longitudinal data to begin to inform whether such headlines are part of the ``Get off my lawn!'' phenomenon of aging, or if there is a fundamental shift in the moral character of the students of today. This work reports on the second year of this ongoing study of the differences in perception of academic integrity issues among students and faculty. The study grew out of an effort to formalize and increase the rigor of instruction regarding plagiarism in technical writing. The scope expanded to include an instrument administered to both students and faculty in (REDACTED) that aimed to characterize the degree to which different cheating behaviors are considered bad or ethically unacceptable. For example, is the sharing of a homework with a peer who was ill before the due date more or less ``wrong'' than asking an earlier section of a course what is on an exam before walking in to take the exam? In addition, students who are in their first or second semester of college are compared to upperclassmen to investigate shifts of these perceptions as the students progress through their college careers. As a supplement to the items that gauge the perception of these academic integrity behaviors, the study also polls student respondents to self-report the number of times they have cheated. The ongoing work intends to administer the same instrument annually and report on changes over time as well as comparison between programs.
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