Beat the Cheat: Safeguarding your Course from Academic Integrity Violations

Concurrent Session 5

Session Materials

Brief Abstract

Academic integrity violations are plaguing a large swath of college classrooms across the country. New “study” websites are popping up that make it easier and easier for students to cheat. Some don’t even realize what they are doing is cheating. Do you feel like all you can do is throw up your hands and deal with the cheaters when it happens? Does it seem like nothing you try works? Does your heart break every time you catch a student cheating? Join this session to learn some practical solutions to deter cheating and limit the academic integrity violations.   



April Millet (Learning Designer, John A. Dutton e-Education Institute, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, PSU) She earned both her master’s degree in instructional systems and her bachelor of science in education from Penn State. As a member of the Dutton Institute staff, she works in close partnership with the college’s academic units to design, develop, and manage online courses and programs that use the latest research in education and technology to develop cutting-edge online educational resources that are unparalleled in their quality. April is most interested in ensuring that technology is integrated into courses in a sound pedagogical manner to ensure that students have the best possible learning experience.

Extended Abstract

In an article published in The Atlantic in 2016, the International Center for Academic Integrity reports that about 68% of undergraduates surveyed admit to cheating on tests or on other written work. 43% of graduate students admitted the same. With statistics like that, what can we do to prevent cheating? It seems hopeless, but really,  it’s not.

The literature about academic integrity violations is broken down into two parts, prevention and policing. This session will focus on prevention, so hopefully you won’t have to police your students later, which depending on how big of a cheating problem you have in your class ends up being more time consuming.

As you may know, there are a myriad of ways students cheat. This session will describe five categories that encompass just about all types of cheating. All five can happen in both resident and online classes. Luckily, there are strategies and tools to help you identify and plan for preventing every type of cheating whether you teach online or in a residential class.  This session will focus on four categories including writing course communications, understanding what research says works, applying pedagogy, and using the tools available to you.