Do online students really cheat more than classroom students? Perhaps not.

This study is quite small, so results are not necessarily generalizable, but the results are worthy of discussion and certainly raise some questions that challenge the general assumptions in this area.

Point, Click, and Cheat: Frequency and Type of Academic Dishonesty in the Virtual Classroom

Donna Stuber-McEwen
Friends University
mcewen@friends.edu 

Phillip Wiseley
Friends University
wiseley@friends.edu

Susan Hoggatt
Friends University

Abstract

Students who feel disconnected from others may be prone to engage in deceptive behaviors such as academic dishonesty. George and Carlson (1999) contend that as the distance between a student and a physical classroom setting increases, so too would the frequency of online cheating. The distance that exists between faculty and students through the virtual classroom may contribute to the belief that students enrolled in online classes are more likely to cheat than students enrolled in traditional classroom settings. The prevalence of academic misconduct among students enrolled in online classes was explored. Students (N = 225) were given the Student Academic Dishonesty Survey to determine the frequency and type of academic dishonest behaviors. Results indicated that students enrolled in online classes were less likely to cheat than those enrolled in traditional, on ground courses. Aiding and abetting was self-reported as the most frequently used method among students in both online and traditional classroom settings. Results suggest that the amount of academic misconduct among online students may not be as prevalent as believed.

Read full article at http://www.westga.edu/~distance/ojdla/fall123/stuber123.html

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