An Evaluation of Academic Integrity and Sustainable Quality Education in Higher Learning Institutions in Kenya: Students’ Perspectives
Keywords:Academic integrity, Kenya, Sustainable development, Universities, Violations
Education has been recognized globally as an essential weapon for attaining economic, social, and political development in any nation. Education is a fundamental tool in achieving sustainable development. Academic integrity is the act of honesty, trust, and responsibility that the academic community exhibits. Institutions of higher learning embrace an eminent institutional culture by providing quality assurance structures that take cognizance of the inputs, processes, and outputs of the entire learning process nurturing academic integrity. This is because academic integrity gives students and faculty the flexibility to develop new ideas, knowledge, and creative works while also appreciating and acknowledging others' efforts. This paper explored the question of academic integrity in the context of sustainable development in universities in Kenya. A mixed research approach and a cross-sectional design were adopted. A total of 550 respondents were approached for the study. The authors adopted primary and secondary data collection tools to collect data from undergraduate and postgraduate students using simple random sampling. They specifically analyzed documents and collected primary data on forms of academic integrity violation, ways of engaging in academic violations, punishment, and preventive strategies for academic violations. Well-defined strategies, information literacy programmes, ethical policies, good leadership, proper guidelines, mentorship, customized technology, and authentic assessment are seen to be catalysts for promoting academic integrity. While lack of proper strategies, weak policies, fear of failure, and insufficient mentorship inhibit academic integrity standards and practices which negatively influence the acquisition of relevant soft and hard skills needed in the industry. The authors developed an academic integrity framework for consideration by universities in Kenya and beyond. These findings may be used to support relevant policy development in academic institutions. Universities may also benefit by implementing or adapting the proposed academic integrity framework.
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Copyright (c) 2024 Joan Murumba, Jacklyne Okello Alari
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