Academic dishonesty: Zimbabwe university lecturers' and students' views

Authors: 
Chireshe, R.
Imprint: 2014
Collation: p. 45-59
Series: South African Journal of Higher Education, Vol. 28 Issue 1

The study sought to establish Zimbabwean university lecturers' and students' views on academic dishonesty with a focus on the forms of academic dishonesty practised by undergraduate students; reasons for the dishonesty; and ways of minimising the dishonesty. A survey design was used and 31 lecturers and 77 second- and thirdyear Bachelor of Arts undergraduate students participated in the study. Frequencies and percentages were used in the analysis of the data. The study established that a number of forms of academic dishonesty were practised by students at the university, including: plagiarism; copying other students' assignments; fabricating sources of information; taking unauthorised material into the examination room; exchanging notes in the examination room; faking illness to justify late submission of assignments or non-attendance of lectures or tutorials; and writing assignments for other students. Students viewed the reasons for academic dishonesty as mainly externally determined, while lecturers viewed them as mainly internally determined. Strategies suggested by both lecturers and students to minimise academic dishonesty included: taking stringent measures against offenders; thorough and strict marking; teaching students about how to cite sources of information; improving the provision of reading resources; improving ways of lecturing; and imposing strict invigilation. Lecturers felt that students needed to be encouraged to study hard consistently.

Higher education
Academic fraud, Cheating, Plagiarism, Anti-corruption strategies, Diagnostic tools / surveys, Examinations and diplomas, Integrity, Students, Student behaviour, University staff
Africa
Zimbabwe