Assessing the Connection between Self-Efficacy for Learning and Justifying Academic Cheating in Higher Education Learning Environments

Abstract This study was aimed at formulating a model to examine the potential value of perceived constructivist pedagogical practices in decreasing tendency to neutralize (justify) academic cheating through a psychological outcome of academic self-efficacy (SE), in three academic learning settings: new learning environments (NLE), traditional face-to-face learning environments (TLE) and distance learning environments (DLE). Data were collected from a sample of 289 undergraduate college students. Path analysis main results showed positive connections between the extent to which constructivist practices are present in the learning settings, as perceived by the participants, and SE, which in turn reduced the tendency toward justifying academic cheating. Analysis of variance results showed that most of the constructivist dimensions were perceived by students enrolled in the NLE as relatively highly present compared with the other groups. Moreover, NLE students held more positive academic SE beliefs and were less inclined toward academic cheating justification than the other groups.
Interpretation of these results and implications for future research are discussed.

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