A number of recent studies have found correlations between academic dishonesty in higher education and unethical behavior in the work settings. However, these studies have not explored the causal relationship between the underlying factors that lead to this dishonesty. This realization, and apparently high levels of cheating among engineering students, has lead us to a research hypothesis that decision making patterns about academic cheating among engineering students are positively correlated with those individuals' decision making patterns about work place ethics and responsibility. To test our hypothesis, we have developed an exploratory survey that asks questions about the respondent's decisions during opportunities to "cheat" in each of two contexts: college classrooms and work-place settings (with a special focus on engineering work settings). The survey was designed to provide qualitative data that could be used to later develop a more robust quantitative survey. This paper will present only the preliminary quantitative results from this survey


Materials Science and Engineering

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