An examination of Academic Integrity Policies, Standards, and Programs at Public and Private Intstitutions


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Virginia Tech


Academic dishonesty is a major dilemma for institutions of higher learning. Cheating behaviors among students have been documented as early as 1941 when Drake conducted a study that indicated that 23% of students cheated. Since then percentages of students involved in cheating and academic dishonesty have increased. Students are now cheating at an alarming rate as evidenced in a study by McCabe and Trevino (1993) where 52% of 6,000 undergraduate students surveyed admitted cheating on an exam by copying from another student.

The purpose of this study was to analyze the extent to which academic integrity policies, standards, and programs differ by institutional type. Specifically, the study focused on the academic integrity policy of each institution, the promotion of standards, and the academic integrity program.

Data were collected using the Academic Integrity Survey originally developed by Kibler (1993) and modified for use in this study. The survey consisted of 48 questions designed to measure the differences between academic integrity policies, standards, and programs by institution type.

The findings revealed significant difference in three of the five areas. These findings suggest that private institutions are developing honor code systems, training faculty more, and seeing better results from their academic dishonesty initiatives than private institutions.



academic integrity, honor codes, academic dishonesty