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Fostering Academic Integrity in Online Courses

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  1. Fostering Academic Integrityin Online Courses Advice for Faculty Larry MacPhee, CTEL Joyce Kincannon, CTEL Wally Nolan, CTEL

  2. Is cheating inevitable? Why do students cheat? Why is it my problem? 3 General Questions

  3. Easy to get away with Insufficient time A friend needed help Passing grade is vital Everyone else is doing it Nobody cares if I cheat Course is too hard Teacher is unfair Course is useless. Why do they do it?

  4. Credibility is at stake of the Instructor of the Course of the Program of the Institution Student morale is at stake. Is this my problem?

  5. 5 Course Design Elements • Syllabus Design • Content Delivery • Student-Instructor Relationship • Assessment Design • Monitoring Tools

  6. 1. Syllabus Design • Clearly define course objectives • Define inappropriate behavior • Specify consequences • Link to institutional policies • Warn students of monitoring tools • Discuss relevance of course • Establish deadlines • Clearly define course policies.

  7. 2. Content Delivery • Change assignments each semester • Know your audience • Required vs. supplemental info • Tell students what is important • Design assignments for the web. • Link to resource pages • Keep audio & video clips short • Avoid PowerPoint • Use student prompts • Lean and rich, not flashy and fluffy • Offline learning is ok.

  8. 3. Good Communication • Offer frequent reminders • Respond promptly to questions • Build a respectful relationship • Encourage student collaboration • Monitor student communication • Moderate discussions.

  9. 4. Assessment Design • Randomize questions and answers • Use large question banks, multiple versions • Set short time windows for objective tests • Proctor objective tests in labs • Thwart paper mills like “SchoolSucks.com” • Spread points across many assignments • Consider use of “honor statements” • Assume student access to all resources • Investigate suspicious activity.

  10. 5. Monitoring Tools • Enroll a “mole” in your class discussions • Look for same wrong answer patterns • Check test start and end times • Check test takers’ IP addresses • Interview suspects sequentially • Track student scores during the course • Look at grade distributions over semesters • Use comparison tools like “TurnItIn.com”

  11. Google, Encarta, WiFi, IM, cell phones, OCR New Technologies

  12. Software Secure Duke University’s Center for Academic Integrity Designing Online Courses to Discourage Dishonesty by Barbara Christe 30 seconds to a Darwin Biography (courtesy Encarta.com) Additional Resources