MODULE 10 — THE LAST DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

What did this class miss? What topic related to delivery or assessment of online learning should have been included but wasn’t. What should we know about that topic?

 Other than SOP (i.e., seat of pants) experiences with teaching undergraduate and graduate classes at several colleges/universities, as well as conducting professional training and technical assistance programs, I have no formal training in education. This deficit left me out of the loop on more than one occasion,  

I came to this class and program with a very different perspective and agenda. My primary interests remain the design, implementation and evaluation of elearning programs in corporate 

Lastly, having initiated a mastermind group of visual artists here in the Coachella Valley, I am thinking about how I can create online business courses targeted to creative professionals. 

Since class content was totally new to me, I am not sure what was absent. I probably missed it in the beginning, but some clear delineation between design, implementation and evaluation might have helped.

Given my target audience, I would have enjoyed a section on using software in adult (ideally professional) training and development. 

Also greater emphasis upon andragogy and heutagogy would be helpful to all students… Especially since most everyone in the glass were demonstrating the heutagogical principles.

My own personal interests include process development and benchmarking. Irrespective of the learning audience, the concept is critical for the coming decades, especially for those teaching at lower levels. 

To be honest, conversations and assignments about education management systems would be totally inapplicable to those looking to teach in the business world. Similarly, apps and the like are not of interest to overcommitted managers who are already working 50 hours a week. 

If you were going to do a research study about eLearning delivery and/or assessment, what would your study be and why?

I would in all likelyhood come back to my primary interest in professional education and development. Some of the proposed topics are more conceptual than practical. That noted, here are some thoughts:

  • Creating some techniqes to operationalize and assess heutagogy in various professions.
  • Comparing blended learning vs totally online learning with various training programs.
  • Creatigng and assessing the effectiveness of various post training program follow-up programs.
  • Testing models that translate online training models to one-on-one business coaching.
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MODULE 09 REVIEW QUESTIONS

  1. Thinking about an online class you teach or might teach, what is the most likely issue related to plagiarism and/or cheating with which you would anticipate dealing?

Since I plan to teach professional development programs for managers, much of the courses have a coaching focus. Frequently participants will all be from the same company.

In this context, ethics takes on a different slant.  It seems more focused upon individuals carrying their own weight and not about plagariasm per se.

To get around the issue of plagiarism, I am thinking of having participants develop portfolios. Through the coaching, I will get a good sense of who the participant is and if that person’s work (e.g., style, capabilities) is reflected in the work product.

2.Identify and explain the steps and measures you would take to reduce the occurrence of plagiarism/cheating identified in item 1.

Since my programs will be somewhat different than most of my colleagues, my responses will also differ.

Assuming that a program participant does submit work product that exceeds my expectations (i.e., positive or negative), I would arrange for a real time conversation to discuss what brought them to the submitted product.

Since most mid to larger companies do have honor codes and codes of conduct, I would make sure I was familiar with those standards before the actual conversation.

My decision about reporting the person must be contextual. I know from past experiences that there are companies that immediately fire an employee who repeatedly pads their expense account (even for as little as $25 per report.

  1. What does research tell us about the reasons students give for plagiarism/cheating. Remember to cite your sources!

Since I ascribe to Posner’s definition as a fraud (Bailey, 2007). Cyberplagiarism is simply the theft of intellectual property. An arguably very rigorous definition.

Hult Business School Archives (2013), Slater (2014) as well as McCabe (2009) report that plagiarism occurs in all disciplines and at all levels. For these publications, cyberplagiarism at younger levels is a lack of knowledge that they are stealing. Although posed, even with my juniors and seniors and Master’s students feign naiveté and ignorance.

What also emerges, and might be expected, it is in those disciplines that are highly competitive (e.g., business, engineering, graduate schools), that cyber and other forms of plagiarism occur. It is in the humanities and the arts where cyberplagerism occurs.

In addition to actual cheating, there are situations where students try to “barter” for a better grade. For example, when I was teaching juniors at a well known university, an attractive student with a very low cut sweater, walked up to me, letting me know that she would most anything “for an A.” As an FYI, my response was: “Study”.

Slater (2014) indicates that cheating also occurs in f2f and similar teaching formats. According to the author, it appears most frequently in most technical and business disciplines. 

Hult Business School Archives 2013. http://news.hult.edu/2013/02/why-students-cheat-and-what-to-do-about-it

 McCabe, Donald, MBA’s Cheat, But Why? Harvard Business Review, April, 2009. HTTPS://HBR.ORG/2009/04/MBAS-CHEAT-BUT-WHY.HTML   (Abstract)

Slater, Harry, Distance Learning Can Make Plagiarism and Cheating Harder to Spot. The Guardian, http://www.the guardian.com/education/2014/mar/14/students-cheating-plagiarism-online.

Thomas, Ebony Elizabeth and Kelly Sassi. An Ethical Dilemma: Talking about Plagiarism and Academic Integrity in a Digital Age. English Journal, 100.6 (2011), pg 47-53

 Evaluate your participation in the discussion this week. Provide at least one quote from the discussion that supports your evaluation.

My participation in this week’s discussion may have been less frequent than I would like, however, I do think there were some quality comments. For example, I supported Laura’s assertion about less plagiarism with on-line courses, as demonstrated with Open University courses

I suspect that my submissions on the cyberplagiarism thread were a bit too late, as I think that I made at least one good point that was overlooked (i.e.  cyberplagiarism is for many students like hacking; it is a game.).

It was an assignment that made me remember experiences from my days in graduate school an initial years teaching.

  1. Identify the student you think was the most important participant in the Blackboard discussion. Explain why and provide at least one quote from that student’s contributions to the Blackboard discussion.

Lorraine for me provoked considerable thought. Her citation about how internet access suggests that there is a paradigm shift among the Millenials.  I just administered an open book midterm and found students paraphrased textbook language without any attribution.

6. Reflect on what you have learned this week. What have you learned that has the potential to inform or influence you or your practice of online learning going forward? Explain why.

This week corroborated what I know, explicitly and implicitly. It also is forcing me to rethink how I am administering f2f classes, as I am not teaching anything on-line at this point.

It also has me thinking about I will assess learning and skill acquisition in professional development programs. Right now, it seems that portfolios seem to be a good choice.

MODULE 09 – PROGRESS ON THE PROJECT

I am further behind than I would like be: I struggled–for some time–with distinguishing between design, implementation and evaluation.  I also found myself needing create a  manageable and non-theoretical project.

Those challenges overcome, my “more” manageable prjoct is is titled “A Self-assessment Schema for Managers attending a Professional Development Program Titled, Creative Problem Solving.

  • Target audience: managers with at least 18 months tenure with their current company
  • Content: Post College and Graduate Level
  • Learning outcome: practical skills that can be applied at the workplace upon returning to the workplace
  • Format: Totally on-line (tentatively)
  • Training tools: blackboard and/or blog, on-line templates for collaborative work.

Assessment tools: Either two or three assessment tools will be developed for the final project.

  • A participant survey on program quality and effectiveness (i.e., to allow for continuous improvement). Participant surveys will be returned to the instructional team for a blind analysis.
  • A self-assessment rubric that gives participants feedback on what they learned and how the practices have been used.
  • Creating a portfolio on one of the technique. Participants will be offered post training technical assistance if they move forward on one technique post training. [N.B. Depending upon available time this last technique may or may not be included.]

Project challenge: Self assessment tools are scheduled to be distributed 1-2 weeks post training program.  In concept, post training assessments  make sense; however, in real life getting feedback is more difficult. I am working on “rewards” for completing the assessments.

I guess that is where I am at. Any suggestions or comments are welcome.

MODULE 09–CYBERCHEATING

Cybercheating?

Since I am currently teaching a Junior/Senior-level course on Business Ethics, this topic is quite interesting and somewhat timely. There will likely be two results of my current situation. Specifically, I will likely

  • Make multiple entries, as my thinking is still evolving.
  • Assume the vantage point of business education and professional development of working professionals

Is cybercheating really different than any other form of plagiarism or cheating?

What is “cybercheating” according to the article provided?

How can we prevent cybercheating and other similar types of plagiarism?

Is cybercheating anything new? And, what is cybercheating.

 Alas, upon reading a book review of Richard Posner’s book, The Little Book of Plagerism (Bailey, 2007)[1], my thought that I had a novel idea was quickly dashed..

Both Posner and I came to the same conclusion but via avenues. As a judge, Posner’s analysis was based upon legal precedent. In contrast, my analysis was based upon my training in human and societal development.

Without seeming too presumptive, I think we would agree that plagiarism today, in all its forms, is merely a developmental outgrowth (i.e., manifestation of previous demonstrations) of the same behavior that has appeared for several decades, if not over a century.  I would say that each of the references cited, as well as the others, not included in this analysis, would like cyberplagariasm would include but not be limited to any and all demonstrations where someone else’s intellectual property is used to answer test question, written responses, term papers, performance portfolios, etc.

Since I can’t speak for Posner, plagiarism is at its core the inappropriate use of someone else’s intellectual property. Given his legal training, Posner, according to Bailey, goes even further: Posner calls plagiarism as a manifestation of “fraud”.

Slater (2014) indicates that cheating also occurs in f2f and similar teaching formats. According to the author, it appears most frequently in most technical and business disciplines.

In the business school environment, faculties report that plagiarism and related practices remain rampant. For example, both the Hult Business School Archives (2013) and in the abstract for McCabe’s 2009 article in the Harvard Business Review[2] pronounce that success (e.g., high paying jobs at prestigious corporations) at any cost fosters cheating, in all of its manifestations.

I’d go so far as to suggest that in addition to the “publish or perish” notion in academic environment, the theft of intellectual property extends far beyond academia. A great popular media example is the 1990’s film “Working Girl”. [N.B. While I have never been a “working girl”  I have actually experienced intellectual property theft several times in my career.]

Is there a cure for cybercheating?

Whether in the workplace or in school, I’ve come to consider redefine the behavior as “cyberpiracy”: it is the practice of taking someone else’s work product by some sort of legal (e.g., paying for it) and/or illegal manner.

Perhaps, I am a bit sanguine, but honor codes just don’t cut it. In my own classes with Millenials, students think that these codes are a joke.

Also, to me cybercheating is like hacking or creating a computer virus. As soon as one remedy is found, at least two more workarounds appear.

In some cases, cybercheating, like other forms of academic dishonesty:

1) has malicious intent (e.g., getting a great grade),

2) may be pure ignorance. This situation can perhaps be remedied

3) presents cheating as a game where the payoff is not get caught. That to me is the most egregious.

I am reminded when I was pursing my Masters, a fellow student, who was very bright and competent was expelled from the program because he literally copied a professional journal article, verbatim. In my f2f classes, I call out students who use words and phrases that I know are not part of their regular vocabulary.

Essentially, the remedies and solutions suggested by Rowe (n.d.) as well as Thomas and Sassi (2011), are at best bandaids. My approach with f2f classes is to create assignments tests where cheating is evident. Am I always successful? No.  However, I am a bit philosophical. I do the best I can and can’t carry that person’s losses.

Bailey, Jonathan. Book Review: The Little Book of Plagiarism Plagiarism Today , January 23, 2007.https://www.plagiarismtoday.com/2007/01/23/book-review-the-little-book-of-plagiarism/

Hult Business School Archives 2013. http://news.hult.edu/2013/02/why-students-cheat-and-what-to-do-about-it

McCabe, Donald, MBA’s Cheat, But Why? Harvard Business Review, April, 2009. HTTPS://HBR.ORG/2009/04/MBAS-CHEAT-BUT-WHY.HTML   (Abstract)

Slater, Harry, Distance Learning Can Make Plagiarism and Cheating Harder to Spot. The Guardian, http://www.the guardian.com/education/2014/mar/14/students-cheating-plagiarism-online.

Thomas, Ebony Elizabeth and Kelly Sassi. An Ethical Dilemma: Talking about Plagiarism and Academic Integrity in a Digital Age. English Journal, 100.6 (2011), pg 47-53

RE: Cybercheating?

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Upon rereading my resopnse to the third question, I think that I talked around, but not to the issue. In essence, the vehicles and techniques for cybercheating et al, are ever evolving; they are like the carnival game, “Whackamo”.

Once again waxing philosophic, I will never catch up to the students who want to cheat, my goals are to find ways to 2) minimize the theft of intellectual property, irrespective of how it is .accomplished and 2) call-out the individuals and make known, within the limits of school policies, the consequences when the behavior is exhibited.

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[1] As I was unable to get a copy of the Posner’s book in time to complete these questions, my comments are based upon others’ analyses. I have however disclosed all the sources for these statements.

[2] Again, I was unable to access the entire article.Bottom of Form