Integrity Matters

An ICAI Blog providing the latest insights about academic integrity

 


 

It was a great joy to co-host the International Day of Action for Academic Integrity #IDoA2023 on October 18 with Rachel Gorjup, University of Toronto Mississauga. This is the first year with the new positive and educational title of the event (from the previous title of ‘International Day of Action Against Contract Cheating’) which enabled us to broaden the scope and interest in the event. Our carefully framed theme for this year of ‘Championing academic integrity in the age of AI’ also kept our focus firmly on promoting academic integrity all day, while acknowledging the current challenges with Artificial Intelligence.

Panel perspectives

One of the key ways we aimed to champion academic integrity this year was through our five student panels ac...

“And now, Margaret is here to talk about everyone’s favor topic, academic integrity.” This was the introduction I received at a recent meeting of senior administrators at my university.

There was nothing unusual in these words. Academic integrity is widely viewed by faculty, administrators, students and parents as a distasteful problem, something we would wish away if we could. I admit there are moments I wish this myself.

But after more than a decade overseeing academic integrity policy and case management in collaboration with wonderful colleagues, I have arrived at a more radical and more practical conclusion: The breakneck expansion of generative artificial intelligence offers a rare opportunity – and an ethical imperative - to radically transform the approac...

The final pillar for Giving Voice to Values (Gentile, 2012) is reasons and rationalizations. In academic integrity work, student rationalizations for academic misconduct are dominant in the decision-making process when students cheat (Stephens, 2017).  In general, people want to be “good” and will always rationalize their behavior by disengaging morally to avoid cognitive dissonance. If educators expect students to stand up for academic integrity, for example through a requirement that they report their peers for academic misconduct in an honor code, then they should train those students to identify and recognize when those rationalizations occur. Gentile (2012) argues that recognizing and naming the unethical argument reduces its power. At this point it is no longer an assumpt...

This week, I am exploring the next two pillars of Gentile’s (2012) Giving Voice to Values: self-knowledge and voice. When people possess a more intimate knowledge of themselves, they can better uphold their desired self-image. This can help people focus on aligning their values with how they view themselves, making them more likely to speak and act on those values. Self-knowledge also provides an insight into people’s “voice” or their approach to standing up for personal values. It can put people in touch with the appropriate framework.

Borrowing from Dees & Crampton (1991)’s framework, we can understand idealists as those who act on their values no matter the cost, opportunists as those who focus on material well-being over values, and pragmatists as thos...

Last week, I wrote about helping students find academic integrity in their values. Today, I’m transitioning to Gentile’s (2012) three pillars of choice, normalization, and purpose. Voicing academic integrity as a value can only happen when students view being academically honest as a choice. We can normalize this by building cultures that promote honest academic work. Faculty and staff can help students see the value of being students. When the purpose of education is to learn, students may find that making choices that align with their values is a regular occurrence. This in turn gives them the courage to speak out when someone violates that norm.

Gentile (2012, p. 47) writes, “Free will is a matter of free will.” In other words, when students believe they have a choice...

Fall semester is underway for many of us as we welcome new students and already enrolled students to our learning settings. New semesters bring plenty of reasons to be excited and positive in our roles as educators, leaders, and researchers in academia. We would be remiss, however, to downplay the effects that we continue to experience post-pandemic across our learning environments and within our approaches to teaching-learning. Just as we began to share a collective deep breath and settled into new ways of engaging our students we were met with a second challenge, the unprecedented global rise of artificial intelligence applications. Free access to some of the different applications has allowed students to easily adopt them into their daily academic work, sometimes with little apprecia...

The International Center for Academic Integrity (ICAI) is four weeks out from the International Day of Action for Academic Integrity! In celebration of this event, this blog will spend the next four weeks focusing on the Fundamental Value of Courage, applying the lens of Giving Voice to Values by Mary Gentile (2012) to educational integrity. The ICAI (2019) defines being courageous as “acting in accordance with one’s convictions.” As practitioners of academic integrity and faculty from a myriad of educational backgrounds, we can help students em...

As the semester progresses, first exams and major assignments are coming due. Offices of Academic Integrity have been preparing by spending the first weeks of the term focusing on education and outreach, but the transition to case resolution is fast approaching. As we pivot towards finding and handling cases of alleged misconduct, one major suggestion for faculty to reduce cases of academic misconduct is simple: remind your students of the honor code before the assignment is due.

This is not something that should take a full lecture session or take away from the content of your course. Instead, I am asking you to remind your students that they have an obligation to turn in honest work. Tell them that it matters what they submit to you, and why. Repeat what is allowed or expected...

Academic integrity policies come into effect through a variety of methods. Whether it is a high stakes academic integrity case on campus or a well-respected integrity crusader that forms the catalyst for implementing new policy or substantially revising an existing approach, the policies themselves—and what we make of them as stakeholders—remain. In Australia (Bretag et al., 2011), Europe (Foltýnek & Glend...

Hello! My name is Abigail Warner, and I am a doctoral student at South College. My dissertation topic is academic misconduct reporting trends, and I am seeking institutional participants for my research study.

Background

The unceremonious shift to emergency remote teaching (ERT) during the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in stress and confusion for both students and faculty, as well as a breakdown in communication. News outlets reported on the seemingly dramatic increase in academic misconduct cases at colleges and universities nationwide (Dey, 2021). One study by Lancaster and Cotarlan (2021) found that the number of test-related questions on Chegg increased by 196.25% when comparing five-month time periods in 2019 and 2020, suggesting that the higher levels of reporting w...