Academic Dishonesty in the Canadian Classroom: Behaviours of a Sample of University Students
Academic dishonesty is a persistent problem in institutions of higher education, with numerous short- and long-term implications. This study examines undergraduate students’ self-reported engagement in acts of academic dishonesty using data from a sample of 321 participants attending a public university in a western Canadian city during the fall of 2007. Various factors were assessed for their influence on students’ extent of academic dishonesty. More than one-half of respondents engaged in at least one of three types of dishonest behaviours surveyed during their tenure in university. Faculty of enrolment, strategies for learning, perceptions of peers’ cheating and their requests for help, and perceptions and evaluations of academic dishonesty made unique contributions to the prediction of academic dishonesty. High self-efficacy acted as a protective factor that interacted with instrumental motives to study to reduce students’ propensity to engage in dishonest academic behaviours. Implications of these findings for institutional interventions are briefly discussed.