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Welcome from Erica Morris. Then there were two key note speakers during the day:

First Keynote: Dr Tricia Bertram Gallant (Academic Integrity Office – University of California) ‘Step One – Create a policy. Step Two – Now what do we do?’

 She used the metaphor of a SatNav (Garman) to explain the problems of an institutional policy. Does the policy take us where we want to be? The problem is too complex to solve the problem on its own.

 1. Why do individuals cheat? Lack of morals, lack of knowledge/skills, psychological reasons.

 2. Organisations – which are not perfect? Maybe it’s the room layout in exams which allow students to cheat.

 3. Educational system. Lack of preparation at a school level – students doesn’t know what plagiarism is.

 4. Society. Maybe everyone is doing it so why not join them Cheating Culture by David Callaghan. Technology also adds to this problem (many websites that encourage it)

 So how do get where we wan to be? We need a road map.

 Several steps

Building recognition. Is there a problem to be addressed? It’s easier to ignore cheating than to deal with it? We are asking them to do more work. Focus is just on end results i.e. grades.

Build problem recognition. Collect data (to be able to define the problem). Review and summarize the research. Gather testimonials.

Building Commitment. How do we get people ‘on board’ to solve the problem? Heads of schools must make public statement that there is a problem. Build a Guiding coalitions – Need to bring in dissenting voices. Remove roadblocks and obstacles (and reward their commitment to resolving plagiarism)

Involve students. Peer pressure is really important.

Generating response. Led to a technological arms race e.g. Turnitin even into a ‘police state’ and criminalizes student’s behaviour. Al these lead to student and staff resistance. “They do not lead to the development of ethical, educated professionals”.

 

Tricia proposes a Teaching and Learning Response to combat plagiarism. In other words ‘How do we ensure students are learning rather how do we stop them from cheating’.

 To implant this change we need to think at 3 levels:

 1. Procedural. We need procedure to assess learning, admissions, recruitment etc

 2. Structural. E.g. integrity office or teaching and learning centre

 3. Climate. Brand integrity (how do we make this cool?) builds a healthy ethical climate. ‘Model’ desired behaviour.

 Second Keynote: Envisioning a world without Plagiarism: the emerging and potential impact of programme assessment strategies

 Prof. Peter Hartley started with some personal reflections on plagiarism:

1. We now have a plagiarism ‘industry’ who can give us the facts?

2. What is our mindset? Where is the learning teaching to deal with plagiarism

 3. Why do students do it?

4. What messages do we give to students?

5. What is the psychology of a ‘direct approach’

 We need BOTH a direct and indirect approach; “high level objectives are best achieved through obliquity” John Kay

 One solution is Programme Assessment Strategies (PASS) project based atBradfordUniversity:

 Problems /issues in current assessment: don’t assess learning outcomes, tick box mentality, ‘One size fits all’, standardisation (institutional rules, too much summative assessment (backed up by the results of TESTA).

 What do you mean by Programme Focused Assessment? “Designed to address programme outcomes…..It is integrative in nature”

Potential benefits of PFA:

  • Integrated learning
  • Students taking deep approach to learning
  • Increased self assessment
  • Students take greater responsibility for their learning
  • Reduced summative assessment
  • Smaller no of specialist assessors

Issues;

  • How do you persuade students to do formative assessment that has no grade?
  • Finding resources for staff and agreement that the programme is coherent.
  • Is the institution ready for it?

In other words  it’s not a quick fix.

Two case studies that seem to be working towards a programme based course: 1. Coventry Business Management – big integrative tasks. 2. Brunel – new regulations that allow institutions to innovate – allows conventional modules BUT allows separate assessment blocks and study blocks (5 to 40 credits). Plus assessment blocks.

How does this fit with Plagiarism?

Course team must be cohesive which leads to more focused assessment which leads to less plagiarism.

Useful links:

See www. Pass.brad.ac.uk

Future conference:

PASS conference Assessment Strategies: The way forward 24/25 July 2012-06-14

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