THE PREVALENCE OF ACADEMIC DISHONESTY AMONG UNIVERSITY STUDENTS: AN ACTION RESEARCH STUDY IN THE FIELD OF EDUCATION
Academic dishonesty poses a significant challenge in educational institutions, compromising the integrity of learning environments. This study endeavors to identify the root causes contributing to the prevalence of academic dishonesty among university students and proposes actionable strategies to address this issue. To get an in-depth insight into the issue, a questionnaire was developed and validated through expert opinions. Suggestions from experts were incorporated and shared again with experts to get final approval for the utilization of the questionnaire. Employing an action research methodology with a descriptive focus, the researcher conducted surveys using this validated questionnaire. 150 university students were purposively selected for data collection. Focus group discussions with 9 students and interviews with 4 teachers were utilized to obtain a comprehensive understanding from both perspectives. The findings are based on the high value of the mean. After the identification of the results, Researcher emphasized the urgent need for concerted efforts to create a sustainable, transparent, and healthy learning environment within the university. Addressing the root causes of academic dishonesty requires collaborative initiatives to promote academic integrity, foster ethical behavior, and implement preventive measures. By implementing the proposed action plan and strategies derived from this study, universities can effectively combat academic dishonesty and uphold the integrity of their academic programs. In conclusion, this study offers valuable insights into the prevalence and root causes of academic dishonesty among university students.