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Understanding Student Experiences with Commercial Contract Cheating and Other Outsourcing Behaviours

This research project involved a collaboration between the Alberta Council on Academic Integrity (ACAI) and Bow Valley College. The research explored post-secondary student experiences of contract cheating and stress students encounter while completing their programs.

Abstract:

Purpose: The primary goal of the project was to better understand post-secondary student experiences of contract cheating and the stress students encounter while completing their programs.

Methods: Survey research methodology, using well-established measures from contract cheating research and research on the stress process were used to collect closed and open-ended responses from career program learners in a community college in Alberta. Responses were collected in Survey Monkey, an online survey tool, from 916 participants in October 2021.

Results: Survey results overall indicated student involvement in contract cheating. Differences between commercial contract cheating and sharing behaviour were revealed. High levels of stress were reported, and type of stress varied across contract cheating behaviour.

Implications: The results of this study add to the continually growing body of knowledge of academic integrity in Canada. They will also expand on knowledge of the stress students experience and the personal and social resources they have access to while completing their programs and how this may relate to contract cheating.

Key Words: contract cheating, academic integrity, academic dishonesty, plagiarism, stress

This resource is available as a free downloadable resource:

PDF – Ferguson et al. 2022-compressed.pdf

Authors: Ferguson, Corrine; Toye, Margaret; Carver, Christina; Pictin, Tonisha; Eaton, Sarah Elaine; Boisvert, Sheryl

Cite this resource as:

Ferguson, C. D., Toye, M. A., Carver, C., Pictin, T., Eaton, S. E., & Boisvert, S. (2022). Understanding Student Experiences of Commercial Contract Cheating and Other Outsourcing Behaviours – Research Report. Calgary: Bow Valley College.

Academic Integrity Week 2022: October 17-21

Join us for Academic Integrity Week, October 17-21, 2022

AB AcInt Week 2022The Alberta Council on Academic Integrity is pleased to announce Academic Integrity Week: October 17-21, 2022.

Here are some ways for educational institutions across the province to get involved:

  • Offer events at your school to promote academic integrity
  • Engage students in conversations about academic integrity
  • Offer skill-building workshops such as citing and referencing workshops
  • Distribute academic integrity swag to students and staff
  • Hold workshops for faculty on topics such as academic misconduct case management
  • Build awareness about the predatory contract cheating industry
  • Connect with your student leaders to plan events and raise awareness
  • Cross-promote workshops and events with other Alberta institutions
  • Join the International Day of Action Against Contract Cheating on October 19, 2022

Share this post: Academic Integrity Week 2022: October 17-21  https://albertaacademicintegrity.wordpress.com/2022/06/20/academic-integrity-week-2022-october-17-21/

ACAI 2022 Provincial Meeting

Join us for our 2022 Spring #AcademicIntegrity provincial meeting May 26, 2022 at Bow Valley College

Registration is open for the Alberta Council on Academic Integrity (ACAI) Spring 2022 provincial meeting.

Please join us for the Alberta Council on Academic Integrity (ACAI) Spring 2022 provincial meeting, a hybrid event to be hosted virtually by Bow Valley college. Anyone keen to support academic integrity in post-secondary institutions as well as in K-12 in Alberta is welcome – students, staff, faculty, administrators, and any other interested party. You can join in person at the Bow Valley College campus in downtown Calgary, or join virtually through MS Teams.

Highlights:

  • Presentation on the Bow Valley College research project: Understanding Student Experiences with Contract Cheating and other Outsourcing Behaviours – The research team includes an administrator, a faculty member, and two student researchers from Bow Valley College with ACAI as the community partner
  • A panel discussion by English Language Learning students sharing experiences regarding academic integrity
  • Faculty sharing UDL interventions to prevent cheating
  • Reports from the EDI, Contract Cheating, and Educational Development working groups
  • Updates on Alberta Academic Integrity Week (Oct. 18-22, 2022) activities
  • Thursday, May 26, 2022

8:30am – 3:00pm

Location: Bow Valley College – 345 6 Ave SE Calgary AB

Online through MS Teams (meeting link will be provided closer to the event date)

Register here

If you have any questions, please direct them to Margaret Toye, Steering Committee Member, Alberta Council on Academic Integrity (ACAI): mtoye@bowvalleycollege.ca

We look forward to connecting with you at the meeting!

Resource: Parallels Between the Contract Cheating Industry and Organized Crime

The global contract cheating industry is worth billions of dollars. It includes, but is not limited to essay mills, term paper mills, thesis-writing services, unethical tutoring, and unethical file-sharing. The industry shares characteristics with organized crime. This resource shows some of the parallels between the commercial contract cheating industry and organized crime.

Alberta Council on Academic Integrity (ACAI) logo 2021

Members of the Contract Cheating Working Group of the Alberta Council on Academic Integrity have developed a new open access resource, “Parallels Between the Contract Cheating Industry and Organized Crime”.

Abstract:

The global contract cheating industry is worth billions of dollars. It includes, but is not limited to essay mills, term paper mills, thesis-writing services, unethical tutoring, and unethical file-sharing. The industry shares characteristics with organized crime. This resource shows some of the parallels between the commercial contract cheating industry and organized crime.

This resource is available as a free downloadable resource:

Microsoft Word – ACAI Contract Cheating and Organized Crime 2021-04.docx

Authors: Dustin Grue (NorQuest College, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada), Sheryl Boisvert (NorQuest College, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada), & Sarah Elaine Eaton (University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada)

Cite this resource as:
Grue, D., Eaton, S. E., & Boisvert, S. (2021). Parallels Between the Contract Cheating Industry and Organized Crime. Parallels Between the Contract Cheating Industry and Organized Crime. Alberta Council on Academic Integrity: Contract Cheating Working Group. http://hdl.handle.net/1880/113323

Webinar re-cap: Proctoring online exams – Experiences in Alberta

Here’s a re-cap of our webinar on proctoring of online exams.

On 22 July 2020 we hosted “Proctoring online exams – Experiences in Alberta”. The webinar was hosted by Margaret Toye (Bow Valley College), Steering Committee Member for the Alberta Council on Academic Integrity.

Panelists included:

  • Kimberley Hogarth (Bow Valley College)
  • Sarah Elaine Eaton (University of Calgary)
  • Paul Sopcak (MacEwan University)

You can access a recording of the webinar here:

Stay tuned for our next webinar, coming in August.

Academic Integrity: Combating Systemic Racism

One-page resource to help educate people about systemic racism and academic integrity.

After releasing the Alberta Council on Academic Integrity’s Statement Against Racism, we have received requests for educational materials and resources. We offer , “Academic Integrity – Combating Racism” as an introductory one-page resource.

Statement Against Racism

Academic integrity cannot co-exist with injustice. The Alberta Council on Academic Integrity denounces racism in all forms. See our statement against racism.

Alberta Council on Academic Integrity

Statement Against Racism on Matters Relating to Academic Integrity

Statement release date: June 4, 2020

Academic integrity cannot co-exist with injustice. The Alberta Council on Academic Integrity denounces racism in all forms. This includes:

  • Negative stereotyping of students from particular countries or cultures.
  • Racially biased reporting of academic misconduct that either implicitly or explicitly targets students of colour, students for whom English is not a first language and other racialized minorities.
  • Excessively harsh sanctioning of academic misconduct among racialized minorities.

We call upon all educators, administrators, and institutions to:

  • Acknowledge that particular groups of students are over-represented in academic misconduct reporting.
  • Speak out against racial stereotypes that persist against Black, Asian, Middle Eastern, Latinx, and Indigenous students with regards to academic misconduct.
  • Ensure that reporting of academic integrity violations is consistent across the student body and breaches are addressed in fair and equitable ways.
  • Collect institutional academic misconduct data on racialized minorities in order to identify, prevent, and pro-actively address racial bias in reporting and sanctioning of students who are not white or for whom English is not their first language.

The Alberta Council on Academic Integrity was established in 2019 to promote and advocate for academic integrity across Alberta. Questions about this statement can be directed to members of the Steering Committee.

Download a .pdf version of this statement:

Alberta Council on Academic Integrity – Statement Against Racism 2020-06-04

Main page – Alberta Council on Academic Integrity 2020.

Draft Charter

At the October 2019 meeting of the Alberta Council on Academic Integrity, held at Norquest College in Edmonton, we presented a draft charter to those present.

At the October 2019 meeting of the Alberta Council on Academic Integrity, held at Norquest College in Edmonton, we presented a draft charter to those present. We received feedback on the charter, which has been incorporated into the version posted here.

The draft charter was slated for ratification at the April 2020 meeting of the council, but the meeting was delayed due to COVID-19. Whenever the council meets again, we will present the charter for approval.

Draft Charter 2019-10.

Questions can be directed to members of the Steering Committee.

Alberta Council on Academic Integrity 2020.

Spring 2020 Meeting

Join us for our spring 2020 meeting on April 24, hosted by Lethbridge College.

Friday, April 24, 2020 – Hosted by Lethbridge College.

There is no cost to attend. Participants are welcomed from Alberta post-secondary institutions. If you are not affiliated with an Alberta post-sec, please contact us before registering. Registration is required.