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How Academic Dishonesty Leads To Failure 

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Faculty researchers from a midwestern U.S. public university along with a various amount of other research studies have lead to conduct a better understanding of students perception on academic integrity. Within each of the studies performed there was a level of common ground across the board on this specific subject. The Midwestern U.S. public university conducted a study to collect data using the social capital survey. Within the survey, the students were asked to answer questions which addressed the attributes of social capital that included trust, reciprocity and civic engagement among community members. The social capital interview was designed to collect qualitative responses to the question asked about social integrity (Woith, Jenkins, Kerber, 2012).

Following, the surveys were taken into careful consideration and were deeply reviewed for frequent responses. Twenty-seven percent of participants were not satisfied with their peers’ academic integrity (Woith, Jenkins, Kerber, 2012). The interviews were then examined for similar themes and what was collect was three themes that appeared to be identical throughout the interviews. The main three themes were, why do students feel entitled to cheat, how professional outcomes will be affected, and how lack of knowledge could lead to danger within the field. Although these responses do in fact show that students have a valid understanding of the risks that are involved with cheating, studies still show how cheating among college students is only increasing (Woith, Jenkins, Kerber, 2012).

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My immediate reaction to cheating is that is a completely backfiring, unbeneficial act. Cheating your way throughout your education is only setting the path to failure because you are now relying on others to supply you with the knowledge you need when in return you need your own network of knowledge that you have within your own brain to pave the road to success. In regards to the research that was presented to me in the article “Perceptions of Academic Integrity Among Nursing Students”, my reaction to what I analyzed was deeply agreeing that interventions need to be brought on board to colleges and universities to promote academic integrity and eliminate academic dishonesty. In order to promote change it must in fact come from students, faculty and the internet as well. Humans brains work through social modeling, what we see others doing we then mirror those behaviors in return. Using students to be those mentors to promoting integrity could lead to making this change.

There is no moral or ethical reason to cheat. Some reasons as to why a student would cheat is seeing others doing it and causing the mindset “if they are cheating then I should too”. The pressure of doing well on the exam or an assignment could cause a student to use wandering eyes or a mobile device to uphold that standard. A final reason to why students feel the need to cheat is poor time management skills. The work load that is put on students backs could be challenging at times, and some students underestimate how much time they will really need to complete an assignment or how much time will need to be set for studying. When time runs out students tend to panic and take the shortcut, cheating.

I believe that nursing students should be held to a higher standard than other students because college is initially the side street off of that main highway. College should be laying out the line for what is to come next in the big step of becoming a nurse. Having academic honesty practiced throughout nursing school is one way to ensure that health cites will retain the highest level of integrity in their nurses. Students must be held to high academic standards throughout nursing school because cheating, and plagiarizing is not tolerated in the workforce and providing the nursing students of what is morally right will then in fact cause no question to what is expected in the profession itself. Cheating undoubtedly gets in between the knowledge of new nurses. Under no circumstance is a nurse aloud to alter medical record, forge prescription or fail to follow up with patient procedures. Nursing professors can serve as role models by following through with enforcement to academic dishonesty actions, which may include in the dismissal from the program if students found to be in violation of the code of conduct within the college or university’s nursing handbook. Students need to have a firm understanding of these expectations and be held accountable. Those who lack this understanding in nursing school are definitely not ideal candidates for the profession of nursing.

Nursing students who cheat without doubt will go on to provide poor patient care by not maintaining professional standards. Students who cheated their way through nursing school could ultimately end up killing their patients. If the student cheated on their dosage calculation exam in nursing school, it could then lead to medication errors and a lack of knowledge on the part of the cheating nurse. Nurses need to have their own brain filled with knowledge and information in order to provide accurate, high quality patient care that is expected. Those who squeezed by with the knowledge of the student net to them will then go on to provide false, inaccurate information to their patients simply because they do not know the terminology, calculations, conversions, basically all the crucial information that a nurse must know. This is a very serious concept throughout the process of becoming a nurse, no one want a nurse to be taking care of them who cheated their way through nursing school. That feeling of your life potentially being in the hands of someone who does not fully understand what they are doing is life threatening whether the patient knows or not. It is crucial for nursing student to go all in one hundred percent with academic honesty along with academic integrity to provide the top quality care to patients and to make sure the trust bond is created. Having your patients have full faith and trust into the care you are delivering to them is a barrel gold. That’s the ultimate feeling that is essentially wanted from nurse to patients!

The penalties that should be put into action for the outcome of a cheating nursing student is immediate removal from the university or colleges program, a zero for that particular assignment or exam that was done dishonestly and that student would have to sit in front of the deans of academic as well as the nursing professors and give an alleged reasoning on why you cheated. These penalties may seem too extreme for a student cheating but if you give them a warning and just a zero for the exam and or assignment if something like this was to hapened just once like it expected to once a student is given a warning, within the medical field there are no warning per say for a nurse who miscalculated the dosages for a patient or did not record critical information could lead to a life or death situation you do not have second chances in the life of being a nurse with many factors, therefore the penalties that should be implemented to that nurses student who cheated and key and very reasonable to the cause that something bigger and far more serious does not steam.

The few steps that I took in order to complete my search to find my additional articles are accessing the library portal through the Stockton University website, searching CINAHL through the A-Z databases, searching “Academic Dishonesty” and “Cheating” or “Nurses” in CINAHL, and selecting the box for full text. With typing in that information a bulk of articles were then provided to me and I picked the two articles that caught my attention and had valuable information that keyed into my topic of discussion.

Within the article “SPEAKING Against Student Academic Dishonesty: A Communication Model for Nurse Educators” provides important information and factors for nursing professors to consider when faced with an academically dishonest nursing student as well as interventions early on by nursing professors as a strategy to diminish student academic dishonesty. The two applications to detect and assess academic dishonesty utilized the Hymes (1974) SPEAKING acronym to remind the proper way to communicate with students about academic dishonesty (Jeffreys, Stier, 1195). The most important piece of information nursing professors need to take into careful consideration is focusing on preventing academic dishonesty and promoting integrity. Although there is always so much one person can do to intervene these actions, nursing educators should be fully prepared to attack dishonest behaviors. The two models provided within the article are useful tools for professors to acquire the knowledge in order to become aware on how to handle situations. Nothing is worse than a nursing student cheating and not getting caught for their actions. The failure of the professor to be actively observing their students during exams and catching the problem will give the student the right to keep repeating their same actions. When eventually put into the field and taking those actions from the class room and applying them to your work could lead to very serious incidents. The specific factors that impact greatly on how faculty confronts their students and the communication strategies they used are dependent on psychological, ethical, legal, social and environmental factors (Jeffreys, Stier, 1195).

University faculty have an important role in preventing dishonesty through the students academics. Nursing professors need to communicate the non tolerance for dishonesty and promote integrity in order to prepare their students for the future of becoming apart of the most trusted profession.

The article “Academic Dishonesty in Nursing Schools: An Empirical Investigation” provides practical information to provide to the main conclusion of cheating is a consequential issue. There are several questions being asked and evaluated among the board, this article discusses data obtained in a 2007 survey of 12 nursing schools, a data set that permits comparisons of academic dishonesty across different kinds of nursing programs. These discussions will be supplemented with data gathered from nursing students and faculty at eighteen different schools and used as studies of academic dishonesty among college students (McCabe, 2009). A survey was given to both undergraduate nurses and graduate nurses and the results came back that over half of the nursing undergraduates and almost half of the nursing graduate students in each survey self report engaging in one or more of the following behaviors, copying a few sentences from a written source without citing it, copying a few sentences from a Web source without citing it, getting questions or answers for a test or an examination from someone who took it earlier, collaborating with others when asked for individual work,and receiving help that is not permitted on an assignment (McCabe, 2009). Although some of the most common behavior listed may seem as less most frequent behaviors listed are those one might consider less terrible, but no matter the levels of seriousness these levels must be of concern to a profession where human life depends in the hands of the nurse to effectively and efficiently perform their job. Something of a larger concern was what was collected in the second survey, nursing students with other students of different majors attending the same campus.

The serious problem of cheating is increasing drastically and one would not think in a helping profession such as nursing, engaging in academic dishonesty would occur. The study showed that the undergraduates in both nursing and other students reported to have the higher percentages in being involved in the behaviors that were stated in the first survey then those in graduate programs. From the undergraduates engaging in academic dishonesty nursing students had slightly higher percentages than other students on campus. These surveys reveal very scary information and these such behaviors need to be put at fault for our common good. Electronic devices that offer internet connections are very big suppliers to cheating among nursing students and is becoming over greater concern as technology is becoming more and more parts of ours lives. In order to reduce these large numbers it is very important that nursing schools being the gateway to a profession take part in approaches to take a strong professional identity that is built on integrity and a desire to serve. Although each nursing school has its own unique character, there seem to be several different ways that can aid to building, or rebuilding a stronger professional ethic.

After further researching into these two articles as well as reviewing the first article, my opinion on a student nurses cheating has remained the same, if anything it enhanced. After learning the reasoning on why students feel the need to cheat, ways nursing professors need to handle cheating, ways nursing professors need to promote academic integrity and studies showing how high collegiate cheating really is. This put me farther into disgust that students who are stepping closer and closer into pursuing that career in hopes to help others are taking the shortcut out of things by cheating. I can’t even put myself in the position of being cared by a cheating nurse. I believe that to be the most unethical behavior one could ever do. In time to come I hope the concept of cheating especially in nursing school will come full circle and that term will not even be of of one’s concern. Nurses need to be the most trusted personale to their patients and in order to ensure this quality cheating can not be a factor in the mix!

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