The Impact of Technology on Academic Dishonesty: Perspectives from Accounting Faculty
AbstractNew technology has had a significant impact on higher education, including the area of academic dishonesty. Technology provides new opportunities for students to engage in dishonest behaviour while simultaneously providing faculty members with new ways to control such behaviour. The purpose of this study is to investigate academic dishonesty in accounting programs from the perspective of accounting faculty members with a focus on the impacts of technology. Over 375 survey responses were received from faculty members across Canada and the United States. The results reveal that accounting faculty perceive academic dishonesty to be a significant issue that is compromising the integrity of the classroom and that incidences of academic dishonesty have increased over the past five to ten years. The proliferation of technology has resulted in increased incidences of academic dishonesty, and has a more significant impact on plagiarism as opposed to exams. The three types of academic dishonesty impacted the most by technology are: i) using information without proper referencing; ii) using unauthorized materials during a test; and iii) using another students assignments from a previous semester. There is also broader agreement that creating and using new exams, cases and assignments every year is an effective control against academic dishonesty. For greater effectiveness, assessment should be designed such that student responses are unique; however, this type of assessment requires significant time and effort and faculty membersâ€™ contributions in this regard should be encouraged, facilitated and recognised by the academic administration.