Academic integrity is a noble ethic which all educational administrators, instructors and students need to observe Recently, there have been several incidents of cheating which have compromised the quality of education offered in several learning institutions.
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Cheating and plagiarism are dishonest academic practices which affect educational standards negatively. This paper will discuss how cheating and plagiarism affect academic practices in different learning environments.
Many learning institutions in the country are affected by incidents of cheating and other academic malpractices. Students cheat in exams due to different reasons. Many students cheating to enable them get good grades after their exams have been marked. They cannot tolerate failure because they feel it has a negative impact on their reputation.
They resort to cheating to avoid being held responsible for their academic shortcomings. Students are tempted to cheat in exams to satisfy their teachers’ and parents’ expectations. Parents exert a lot of pressure on their children to perform well at school, which drives them to cheat in exams. Some parents do not take failure by their children in examinations, lightly (Daly).
They scold their children whenever they receive poor grades in school. Parents need to encourage their children to improve their academic performance, even when they fail. This will reduce the pressure which students have to deal with in educational institutions.
Teachers and other education professionals need to observe high moral standards in their duties to discourage students from cheating. Academic dishonesty reflects negatively on an instructor’s professionalism because it shows that he or she failed to prepare students for exams. Instructors need to understand their students to find out what drives them to cheat in exams.
They need to teach students to have integrity in learning to make them good citizens in future. Academic dishonesty needs to be discouraged to make students learn virtues of hard work, patience and resilience. Students who are morally upright are willing to accept results they get after sitting for their exams. Students need to be made aware on how cheating impacts negatively on their future (Strauss).
Some students register good grades in college but they are unable to perform responsibilities assigned to them at work. Students who cheat in college examinations fail to acquire skills to help them perform their work responsibilities effectively.
Educational authorities need to put in place strict measures to curb academic dishonesty. Students and teachers who engage in cheating and plagiarism need to be punished to make them stop this habit. Harsh penalties need to be imposed to make more instructors and their students aware of the consequences of cheating. This approach will serve as a deterrent to academic dishonesty.
Educational authorities need to come up with laws that criminalize cheating to ensure the habit does not take root in many institutions. Instructors who are found to abet or encourage cheating by students need to have their teaching licenses revoked.
This will make them take their professional responsibilities more seriously. Administrators and other stakeholders in educational institutions, need to discourage their students from cheating, to ensure they maintain high levels of integrity in their studies (Strauss).
Academic dishonesty is a critical issue which needs to be tackled effectively by all education professionals in the country. Teaching professionals who supervise and evaluate examinations need to be more vigilant to ensure students do not engage in any form of cheating. Educational institutions need to work with relevant authorities to recommend how examinations.
This will ensure questions which students are asked are not very complex. Students should only sit for exams which conform to their levels of education and syllabus coverage. Robbins reveals that students are motivated to cheat when they feel exam questions are too complex for their understanding.
This makes them resort to cheating to help them pass their exams (Robbins). Educational experts who formulate exam questions need to liaise with teachers and other curriculum experts to ensure students sit for appropriate exams.
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Collaborations between teachers, examination boards and curriculum experts help to reduce cheating incidents in educational institutions. Students need to be told which sections of the learning curriculum are examinable, to enable them prepare for exams properly. This will reduce the temptation that drives them to cheat in examinations.
Recently, Washington DC, Atlanta and Texas have been in the news for wrong reasons because of rampant cheating in exams by high school and college students (Robbins). One of the leading academic institutions the country, Harvard, has also been affected by a cheating scandal. Investigations which were carried out revealed that some students plagiarized answers and others copied their friends’ work.
This scandal has tarnished the reputation of the institution. This shows how academic honesty has become widespread and need to be controlled before educational standards deteriorate.
In conclusion, all stakeholders in educational institutions need to work harder to reduce incidents of cheating by students. This will discourage students from engaging in academic malpractices which affect educational standard in the country. This will reduce cheating incidents in academic institutions thereby improving learning outcomes.
Daly,Tim. “Atlanta Cheating Scandal: Why Don’t More Kids Cheat?” Huffington Post. Hufffington Post, 29 Apr. 2013. Web.
Robbins, Rebecca D. “Harvard Investigates “Unprecedented” Academic Dishonesty Case.” The Harvard Crimson. Harvard Crimson, 30 Aug. 2012. Web.
Strauss, Valerie. “How They Cheated on D.C Tests: Excerpts from New Report.” The Washington Post. Washington Post, 14 Apr. 2013. Web.