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US Academic Integrity Problems in University

The summary of ‘An Economic Analysis of Academic Dishonesty and Its Deterrence in Higher Education’

This document mainly discusses the issues of academic integrity. It makes a detailed analysis on the academic integrity problems now in American universities that are summarized. Why so many students choose to cheat? What kind of students are enrolled in academic dishonesty? (almost all). The relationship between market supply and academic dishonesty. Suggestions and measures relevant institutions take on this problem. The problem of academic dishonesty criticism can be seen everywhere in this document. More and more academic cheating makes the whole education system have a big hole. Low achievers destroyed the whole academic system balance. Author urge students not to do academic cheating. Prevention of academic dishonesty and severe the punitive measures have been implemented. Although the article mentioned several times completely ruled out is not possible with academic integrity, hope that all students and faculties for fairness and justice, to resist this phenomenon.

This document is made up with six parts. They are followed by introduction, state of the union on academic dishonesty, microeconomic arguments on academic honesty/ dishonesty, what the students say: a look at survey results, proposals and resolutions, and conclusions.

In the first part, the author introduces the good academic achievement have a tremendous influence to students. Stephen K. Happeln and Marianne M. Jenningsnn(2008, P183) argue that “the underlying contract in higher education is that students, in exchange for demonstration of individual skills and predetermined levels of under- standing, are evaluated objectively by faculty and rewarded by the reflection of a grade-level performance on their permanent records. in addition to providing a system that can reflect mastery or training in particular subject matters, grading and student evaluation mechanisms, with their rewards and punishments, prepare students for the workplace and its market forces: good performance is rewarded and poor performance and dishonesty are punished. are punished”.It is not only for his/ her individual ability’s evidence, but also is a kind of school’s student evaluation mechanisms and society’s acceptance. More important, which is also the theme of this document-Academic Honesty. The education can provide training and assigning evaluations in exchange for course assignment, work, and requirements- -students enter labor markets burnishing their college degrees as a signal to potential employers. ( Stephen K. Happeln and Marianne M. Jenningsnn, 2008, P184) Academic integrity is not reflected in the academic achievements of the students, but also reflects his influence on society as a whole. The ability to work with academic degrees and diplomas does not allow people to recognize academic achievement, which is a violation of the rights and interests of honest and trustworthy students.

In the second part, it describes the crowd statistics of the phenomenon of academic dishonesty and the attitude of people to academic integrity. “A survey by pennsylvania state university, rutgers university, and washington state university reveals that fifty-six percent of masters of business administration (MBA) students admit that they took notes into exams surreptitiously, stole work from others, and engaged in other forms of cheating.” (available at the center for academic integrity, located at clemson university,P187)”…..surveyed 5,331 students at thirty-two graduate schools in the united states and canada between 2002 and 2004. the study concluded that forty-seven percent of nonbusiness students admitted to some form of serious academic dishonesty during the previous school year.”( Francesca Di Meglio,2006, P187) These two examples shows the serious of academic integrity. Nearly half of the students in higher education also have academic dishonesty. This is an amazing and terrible phenomenon. In the high school students are cheating so, so in a relatively low level of school, this phenomenon will be more serious. In the latter, this document also mentioned, almost all the students will the academic dishonesty naturally or unconsciously. This is the consensus of every academic dishonesty students, better grades for their work to better help. People do not pay attention to the moral problems and punishment, because the punishment does not deter them. There is a more strange and serious problem, Stephen K. Happeln and Marianne M. Jenningsnn(2008, P190) point that” Some MBA students were outraged at the editorial, and they too denied that there was a significant problem with cheating.” It also reflects the problems of the education system, but fortunately most people are in favor of the severe suppression and punishment of academic integrity.

The third part use microeconomic arguments specific analysis of the reasons for the existence of the phenomenon of academic cheating, as well as the relationship between the current marketplace. “Hayek points to knowledge as a commodity that must flow as freely as possible if the marketplace is to maximize society’s welfare.” (Friedrich A. Hayek, 1945, P191) In simple terms, academic cheating is now in direct proportion to the extent to which it is accepted by society. The author uses the supply curve to describe the phenomenon. “Initially, demand may be quite inelastic for many students. they have been told repeatedly that cheating is wrong, …..but eventually a price will be reached where demand becomes quite elastic due, for example, to negligible enforcement or the realization that almost everyone is now cheating.”( Stephen K. Happeln and Marianne M. Jenningsnn,2008, P199) “faculty view the academic dishonesty problem in terms of the demand and supply of academic honesty.” .”( Stephen K. Happeln and Marianne M. Jenningsnn,2008, P200) On one side, because more and more low level students have achieved good results with academic dishonesty, many good students have hesitated to join in the behavior. On the other side, the neglect of this phenomenon by the faculty makes academic dishonesty increasingly rampant. From the market perspective, the academic integrity’s survey will cost amount of money and energy. So only to college diploma to measure a student’s academic level makes dishonest problems have become increasingly serious. This seems to form a cycle of death.

The forth and fifty parts are relatively, a look at survey result that students talk about integrity dishonesty and the proposals and resolutions. It can be included with four words-affidavit, report, punish and curb. Students sign an affidavit to insurance their academic integrity. Students report the academic dishonesty to faculty immediately. Those academic dishonesty students will be severely punished. ASU has absolutes acceptance for academic integrity that curb the academic dishonesty. “The recommendations were met with grateful support from deans, who agreed that visible steps were necessary to change the culture.” (Cultural reforms come from symbolism, P205) This shows that all members of the community to create an academic integrity and the determination of the real talents. However, the cause of academic dishonesty is also a common social contradictions Stephen K. Happeln and Marianne M. Jenningsnn(2008,P207) also showed that “students stress the pressure they feel to make good grades, especially by parents who are paying tuition. …..students are also vocal about how poor teachers encourage academic dishonesty if tests have little to do with class discussions or are so outlandishly hard that mass cheating seems the only answer. quite a few added, ”you don’t cheat in classes you love.” It is common for students to pursue a better academic achievement at the expense of their family. The latter phenomenon is the problem of the university school system, where faculties or college and students all want to get better grades to prove themselves, which have created a large number of open academic dishonesty. Then, an interesting ideas exist the academic dishonesty students, “some individuals just get a high out of cheating and seem to enjoy the thrill of getting away with it”(P207). There are six resolutions that the SFPC came forward for the Faculty Senate in March 2005. The first resolution build an orientation that pay attention to academic integrity culture. The second is in order to enhance the culture with a specific action-brochures. Th third promote faculty to use a website in their syllabus that encourage students do not have academic cheating. The fourth, encouraging faculties to use anti-plagiarism software. The fifth, established in each college to monitor large sections. The sixth, each college designate an individual who serves as the lead authority when cheating problems arise in the college. (P210)

Above, the last step has a conclusion about the total document, according to the academic dishonesty of this phenomenon have occurred, the relevant departments have taken corresponding measures. Students because of vanity and herd mentality, students choose academic cheating. This not only undermines the market demand to have the ability people. The whole society in the loss of credit environment. In addition, make more students lose confidence in academic integrity, which makes the whole country level decreased. At last, the author supports changing the university culture to change the academic integrity. Through a series of small reforms to complete the reform of the entire academic credit.


An Economic Analysis of Academic Dishonesty and Its Deterrence in Higher Education . Stephen K. Happeln and Marianne M. Jenningsnn. Journal of legal studies education volume 25, issue 2, 183-214, summer/fall 2008..

Available at the center for academic integrity, located at clemson university, http://www.

Francesca Di Meglio, a crooked path through business school?, sept. 24, 2006, http://www.

Friedrich A. Hayek, the use of knowledge in society, 35 am. econ. rev. 519 (1945).

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