Understanding why students cheat is the key to convincing them that academic honesty is worthwhile. Dishonest students characteristically lack maturity and commitment, and tend to rationalize their cheating behavior. They have unclear or misplaced values and low self-image, and may regard coursework as irrelevant. They also use opportunities to cheat, and have not thought through the short and long-term consequences of their behavior. Some have learned to be lazy. Effective schemes for preventing cheating deal with root causes, which include attitudes and behaviors not only of the student, but also of the faculty and institution. A teaching/learning climate that has integrity includes a positive moral stance.
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