Academic Dishonesty, Essay Example


Academic deceitfulness is widespread in ever education level.  A great accent has been set on anti-cheating guiding principles, and the newly different student bodies, which tend to come up with an additionally negative outlook of academic deceitfulness. I intend to discuss ethical relativism in relation to academic dishonesty. I will do this by discussing academic dishonesty specifically, what academic dishonesty means, types of academic dishonesty, and the reasons why the majority of students cheat. I will also summarize ethical relativism, and apply ethical relativism to a case of dishonesty.

Part 1

Academic dishonesty refers to any kind of deception that takes place in relation to an official academic exercise. This deception can take account of fabrication, which is the invention or misrepresenting information. Fabrication takes in the invention of information for a test that a student did not carry out or did not carry out in the approved manner or make resource references to sources that were not utilized within a research paper. Cheating refers to another kind of academic deceit, which is the using, or making attempts to utilize materials that are not supposed to be used within any educational exercise or getting another individual to do an assignment or exam for a student. Instances of cheating incorporate looking at someone else’s paper when an examination is taking place and carrying a sheet that has answers to a particular test being done (Webb, 2006). Countless students commit educational deceit for the simple reasons that they have performance concerns and are faced with external pressures. Performance concerns makes students feel that they have to excel in academics at whatever cost given that students do not get into educational institutions so that they can fail. There are scholastic and nonacademic pressures that lead to academic dishonesty. For instance, students cheat when they have a semester workload that is too heavy for them to handle, and when they feel that have to get high-quality grades required for a particular job or graduate school (Anderman & Murdock, 2007).

Part 2

Ethical relativism refers to the viewpoint concerning the manner in which individuals are supposed to live. People who are known to be ethical relativists create what may be referred to as a constructive and an unconstructive claim. The constructive claim enlightens persons on the subject of how to live, whereas the unconstructive claim informs people what the situation is not. The positive claim makes ethical relativists assume that people are required to give support to their community’s moral regulations as the rightful source of good and bad ethics and that they are supposed to follow those moral regulations (Shomali, 2001). Teachers, parents, and other people in society should be consistent in teaching kids and students about morality. Moral tradition through literature and documents not forgetting morality from government officials all show that the morals being employed are legitimate.

Part 3

In regard to Bill’s case of dishonesty, the foremost step in ethical relativism evaluation is being able to make out the action under contemplation. The action in Bill’s case is that he successfully utilizes a cheat sheet in the final history test. The subsequent step is to recognize the relevant community. Bill was brought up, has lived within the United States, and he is supposed to go to college there, as well. The third stage is to recognize the relevant moral regulation of the community. If the entire community is taken into consideration, it may be put forward that the regulation is that academic deceitfulness is immoral. This is so much better compared to saying that cheating is erroneous given that cheating is an expansive term. This expansive term can take in an instance such as cheating when taking part in a board game. The fourth stage is to rationalize that the regulation selected is accurate making it the proper regulation and requires showing that utilizing a cheat sheet illustrates academic dishonesty. For this to happen, academic dishonesty should be defined, then founded on the definition, utilizing the cheat sheet entails deceit, an effort to manipulate the grading progression, and not approved by the history course instructor. The fifth step ought to institute that the community actually has the regulation. It is factual that all institutions at all levels within the U.S. prohibit academic deceitfulness. Therefore, the entire American community has the ethical regulation that academic deceitfulness is wrong. The final stage in ethical relativism evaluation of Bill’s case is to conclude the ethical evaluation. It has been established that within the American society academic deceitfulness is wrong. At the same time, ethical relativism articulates that if society affiliates breach their moral regulation, then that is unethical. Bill infringed his society’s ethical regulation when he utilized the cheat sheet making his action unethical.


I was able to understand academic deceitfulness as a whole through learning the motivation behind student cheating, and relativism in relation to cheating. I believe that ethical relativism characterizes the point that no ethical absolutes, no ethical right or wrong exist. This point would emphasize that morals develop and revolutionize with societal standards over time. This viewpoint allows individuals to mutate morally as civilization, knowledge, as well as technology change within society.


Anderman, E. M., & Murdock, T. B. (2007). Psychology of academic cheating. Amsterdam: Elsevier Academic Press.  Print.

Shomali, M. A. (2001). Ethical relativism: An analysis of the foundations of morality. London: Islamic College for Advanced Studies Press. Print.

Webb, H. K., (2006).  Academic Dishonesty and the International Student: Are International Students Different from Domestic Students?. Purdue University: ProQuest. Print.