Actas Icono14 - Conferencias y Congresos, III Congreso Internacional Sociedad Digital: Ciudadanía Digital

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Academic honesty and fostering integrity in the virtual learning and assessment environment
Maria Theresa Mollica Redmon, Kathy Ann Daniel Gittens

Última modificación: 2014-10-13


Issues surrounding academic honesty have been a major criticism of virtual learning and assessment since their inception.  Detractors of virtual learning highlight the lack of teacher-student co-presence in the instructional enterprise and emphasize the extraordinary challenges to academic honesty.  However, while faculty may have suspicions of plagiarism, cheating and student impersonations in online assessment there has been scant empirical evidence to support these claims. Additionally, it is widely acknowledged that academic cheating can and does take place in traditional face-to-face instruction; a fact which dilutes the argument in favor of co-presence as a deterrent to academic cheating.

Recognizing the need to address challenges to the validity of virtual learning and assessment, proponents have pointed to a range of strategies which reduce threats to academic honesty online. These strategies have matured as online learning and assessment has matured.   In this paper we will present the multiple levels presently in use at universities in the United States including institutional to instructional and a range of approaches from cultural to technical.

Institutional level strategies include promoting a culture of integrity in students’ educational careers through institutional honor codes and technology tools such as plagiarism detection and bio-recognition software as well as browser control software such as Respondus. Departmental and instructor strategies include assessment protocols encouraging the staggered submission of cumulative work products as well as the use of situation-specific authentic assessments and other tools at the disposal of faculty. The efficacy of these approaches and techniques will also be presented in this paper.

Palabras clave

Academic honesty, virtual learning, online assessment, technology tools, plagiarism detection, institutional strategies, instructional strategies.

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