Integrity Matters

An ICAI Blog providing the latest insights about academic integrity

 


 

For academic integrity practitioners across the globe, incidents of reported academic misconduct were likely higher in the previous semester. If you thought you were alone, a quick Google News alert will send you multiple emails a week detailing other institutions’ struggles with academic misconduct rates. For faculty, students, and practitioners this was a frustrating semester. While no stakeholder is to blame–this was an unprecedented pandemic–it can be argued that stakeholders failed to work together to get through this time of crisis. Looking forward, what steps can be taken in the new year to increase collaboration and cooperation with our campus partners?

Review faculty strategies: You may have seen which approaches worked and which were less su...

Happy New Year and welcome back to the first 2021 semester! 2020 was a hard year, and many institutions had to adapt and respond to altered classrooms and additional integrity concerns. 2021 brings hope for the return to in-person learning and more experience in digital delivery. There are some exciting opportunities with the ICAI heading your way:

ICAI Virtual Book Club
The Content Committee will be hosting a book club from January – April. We are going to be reading Phillip Dawson’s new book: Defending Assessment Security in a Digital World. If you are interested in j...

As the academic integrity administrator on your campus, you get a call from an upset parent who states that their student has been accused of cheating in one of his courses, and that the instructor has threatened to fail him. Without a report, and only what the parent is sharing with you, you work to try and explain the process of adjudicating academic dishonesty on your campus. The parent states that the instructor does not intend on filing a report and goes on to outline other issues that their student has experienced in this class. You explain that without a report, there is not much that you are able to do and suggest that their student contact the instructor. The parent shares that they have tried calling the instructor and the department, but this is the only office that has retur...

While Plagiarism Detection Software (PDS) – such as Turnitin – has proven to be a useful tool in my classes for identifying clear violations of academic integrity, an unexpected side effect of using the integrated functions within Canvas has been an increase in student anxiety. While my understanding of the color-coded flags and the percentages presented in Canvas provide me with a quick visual way to identify student papers with potential issues; for students, those numbers are like flashing warning signs of wrongdoing, especially when the numbers are above 40-50%.

I learned very quickly that students didn’t understand what the numbers meant, nor how to actually read their Turnitin report. Instead, students would see the high percentage and immediately send a panicked e-m...

Many, perhaps most, students engage in academic dishonesty, and many factors can contribute to these behaviors. Because cheating is often impacted by the situation, we can use what we know about the factors that impact academic dishonesty to design courses that support integrity and structure student success. 

The connection between course design and impact factors such as hig...

I owe the title and the overriding theme of this blog to Salt-N-Pepa’s 1990 song about sex.  Now that I have your attention, what does this possibly have to do with Chegg?  Well, simply put, we need to talk about it.

Chegg, and other tutoring sites, are more the purview of students than faculty members.  I find that many faculty have only recently become acquainted with Chegg, CourseHero, StudySoup, TutorMe, and the like.  In fact, in several recent academic integrity hearings, I have had to give a brief introduction to these websites for the edification of the faculty hearing board members.  The student hearing board members have never needed an explanation.  Nevertheless, there are many issues regarding Chegg and other tutoring websites that are...

I met my first conspiracy theorist in March 2020 as a result of the global pandemic. The Conspiracy Theory derives from a 2010 Alex Jones claim about Bill Gates. This conspiracy theory is noted as False on Snopes. I was unsettled by this conversation with an adult who could willingly and uncritically accept conspiracy theory as truth and expect an audience to approach this false narrative without critical thinking. I watched Conspiracy Theory videos; I watched John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight videos on Conspiracy Theories and Alex Jones. I researched: I began to piece together why both conspiracy theory and academic integrity hold together and fall apart.

What impressed me was that the conspiracy theorist knew the conspiracy theory an...

The 5th annual International Day of Action Against Contract Cheating took place on October 21/2020 with a record 250+ organizations registering through the International Centre for Academic Integrity (ICAI) website. This event was sorely needed considering all that our world has been through with the pandemic. The day was dedicated to the memory of our trusted colleague Dr. Tracey Bretag who was a beacon of hope and inspiration for all of us working in the field of academic integrity. The main aim of the day was to increase awareness of the practice of contract cheating that runs counter to academic integrity and threatens the quality of our educational offerings. However, this year the international planning committee wanted to increase international participation and communication, as...

The University of Queensland is a large metropolitan research-intensive institution, which predominantly uses face-to-face or blended curriculum delivery. Academic integrity is a high priority, focused on ensuring robust policies, education for students and staff, support for staff in assessment design, and clear processes for detection, investigation, and disciplinary action for breaches.

Academic integrity work was seriously tested in 2020, with the transition to rapid remote delivery (RRD) of teaching and learning, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The shift to online assessment, with minimal time for curriculum change, placed unprecedented pressure on teaching staff. The academic integrity discourse shifted as face-to-face invigilated examinations were now invigilated on...

La pandemia de Covid-19 que estamos viviendo a nivel mundial, en este 2020, está suponiendo nuevos desafíos para todo el mundo, incluyendo la educación superior. La mayoría de las universidades han tenido que pasar a esquemas de educación en línea o por lo menos híbridas (combinando la presencialidad con la virtualidad).

Esto ha conllevado tener que readaptar metodologías y pedagogías para lograr mantener la calidad de la enseñanza en entornos virtuales, así como, crear ambientes de aprendizaje propicios para los estudiantes y algunos otros retos, entre los que se destaca la integridad académica.

Muchas de las medidas de integridad académica hasta ahora, se han basado en el control de tener al alumnado presente físicamente para poder vigilar ciertas condici...