Long Term Effects of Academic Cheating

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The article discusses cheating in academia including the numbers and statistics, the reasons and the strategies to prevent it. What striked me the most in this article is the long term effects of the unethical behavior. McCabe, Treviño, and Butterfield (1996) found a link in their studies between the cheating attitude in college and workplace. The direct correlation between unethical behavior at school and workplace was observed by Sims (1993) in a study conducted on 60 MBA students. His research also indicated that rather than instantaneous situations, it is merely the character of one that leads to cheating. “Several studies have found correlations between academic dishonesty and other deviant behavior, including risky driving, theft from employers, shoplifting, alcohol abuse, and cheating on income taxes.” (Harding et al, 2003:2) A student normalizing unethical behavior in school, soon after starts to deviate in other spheres of life. Harding et al (2003) conclude in their exploration on a link in dishonesty in academic and professional spheres that when students lose their sensitivity to the integrity norms in academia, the consequences of them cheating will be severe, not only on academic level but also on the social level. Christakis and Christakis (2012) ask that if we should really be surprised that high schoolers cheat on standardized tests when they have grown up among thrifty adults. In our societies today we always face the stress of being better. I believe academic cheating is a response to that stress. Ideally, the study environment should be designed according to the student’s individual capabilities and strengths. However, as Marilyn French (1985:387) once put it into words “Only extraordinary education is concerned with learning; most is concerned with achieving: and for young minds, these two are very nearly opposite.”. McCabe, Treviño, and Butterfield (2001) claims through a rightfully executed ethics code in the university, students seem...
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