Essay Example on Honesty Among Students

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  4
Wordcount:  976 Words
Date:  2024-01-11


Cheating does occur at every level of education. Research shows that at the university level, academic dishonesty is at an all-time high. This is attributed to several factors. Some of these factors include student unpreparedness, teacher relaxation on the rules of cheating, moral decay in the society, and subpar measures to curb this crime. The sooner most universities acknowledge the existence of cheating in their schools, the better. There have been instances of different forms of cheating that have been witnessed over the years. Some of these forms include carrying a textbook or a cheat sheet to the exam hall, swapping identity, or having electronic devices used for this purpose.

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To understand the severity of these behaviors, we need to look into the university management themselves. The sooner they accept this reality, the faster measures and guidelines can be put in place to curb this behavior. A few methods can be used to curb this rampant behavior. Some of these proposed measures include enforcing policies and preparedness (Norris, 2019). Some of these policies should address the root cause of cheating and academic dishonesty. Procedures such as putting in place an academic integrity plan to curb dishonesty either in online classes or face to face, enhancing teachings about integrity, enacting hefty fines and penalties on students caught being dishonest, among others.

Few Concerns

According to a recent survey on why students cheat, there are a few concerns that were concluded. According to the research, this is mainly attributed to a culture of desperation. The need to put pressure on the grade outcome rather than focus on the student leads to cheating. Enacting measures such as teaching about integrity could go a long way in ensuring academic honesty in the institution. Mandating that every student should attend a class on ethics and integrity would combat this problem (Zeenath, 2018). Although the success rate would not be that significant, it would cast doubt on those who planned to cheat. During these classes, the university can showcase the dangers of cheating on all levels. The moral implication and guilt that the student would have to live with. This would cause self-reflection among students, and the cases of cheating would go down significantly. This has been backed by researchers who have shown integrity classes force self-reflection on the afflicted. This self-reflection causes guilt and the need to be morally upright since this is a moral situation. Students would self-reflect on their actions and know the dangers of academic dishonesty, which would warrant change and maintain intellectual honesty in the university.

After identifying the root of the problem, many questions arise as to how to end this disease. Cheating in school is only one of the symptoms of societal decay. This is because it is a moral question about whether it is good to cheat or not (Costley, 2017). As discussed above, enacting measures such as honesty in academic practices would go a long way in ensuring cheating is averted. The universities should hold meetings to discuss what they expect on the integrity of their students. They can encourage both third parties, such as parents and guardians, in this discussion. They would play in mitigating this effect would be huge—encouraging both parents and students to work together and establish systems at home to deal with this type of behavior. The schools should take it upon themselves to make sure that their students abide by the school's honor code. This would be a step in the right direction because of enforcing ethical behavior as a policy to abide by while in the school.

Valuing Learning Over Grades

Another way universities can curb cheating is by valuing learning over grades. As discussed earlier, students feel that grades are only an essential aspect of the school. This is highly attributed to the fact that they have grown in an environment that values grades over learning(Costley, 2017). Studies have shown that the levels of cheating in schools have decreased when students are taught about the need for mastery and learning instead of piling pressure on them to succeed through grades. The university can initiate project-based learning. This is where students are given problems and are encouraged to bring their findings through demonstration. Over the years, this has shown to be a great tool in dealing with cheating as it eases the pressure on students by focusing on understanding and mastery.


Lastly, the university can establish policies that foster care among students and teachers. Students look up to their teachers as people who care for their academic needs. If the students believe that teachers value integrity, they will become less inclined to cheat. The university can adopt policies where the teachers focus on the student's emotional and social well being as much as their academic. External pressures can be a driving force into the habit of cheating. This would also help improve the classroom mood and ensure students feel cared for (Costley, 2017). This would lead to immense benefits. This show of care would make the students feel competent and push them to work harder. These actions would lead to less cheating cases because students would believe in their abilities and hard work.


Costley, J. (2017). The instructional factors that lead to cheating in a Korean cyber university context. Interactive Technology and Smart Education.

Norris, M. (2019). University Online Cheating--How to Mitigate the Damage. Research in Higher Education Journal, 37.

Pramadi, A., Pali, M., Hanurawan, F., & Atmoko, A. (2017). Academic Cheating in School: A Process of Dissonance Between Knowledge and Conduct. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 8(6), 155.

Zeenath Reza, (2018). Awareness programs against contract cheating at a Middle Eastern university–pathway to building campus-wide culture of integrity.

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