IMPACT OF IT ON IMPROVING INTEGRITY OF STUDENTS’ WORK IN BOTSWANA
Botho College (BOTSWANA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN12 Proceedings
Publication year: 2012
Page: 6784 (abstract only)
Conference name: 4th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 2-4 July, 2012
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:Botswana is a small, dynamic country with visionary leadership particularly in the sector of ICTs in Education. In practice, Botswana arguably boasts among the highest PC penetration in Education institutions in Africa. The Government has committed financial resources to improve connectivity and to promote the educational use of ICTs. Botswana’s educational system comprises seven years of primary education, three years of junior education and two years of senior secondary education. Education in Botswana is free but not compulsory. The educational mirrors the United Kingdom structure . The country has six colleges and one university. The second university is being constructed and it is anticipated that the classes for the first batch will commence from August 2012. The Nation has a very good ICT infrastructure which is not fully utilized. Thutonet promotes the critical component of the ICT Policy which is e-learning. The higher education sector which offer diplomas, certificates and degree programmes are all well-equipped with computers. Botho College (formerly known as National Institute of Information Technology) is one of leading private tertiary institutions providing higher education. Botho College provides high quality programmes in computing by partnering with international institutions such as NIIT, Open University and Teesside University. One of the major issues that the tertiary students of Botswana face is plagiarism which is more common academic dishonest practice.
This paper focuses towards the impact of IT which has shown some improvement in curbing plagiarism thereby achieving integrity. Botho College started to use tools like Copycatch and Turnitin thanks to the collaboration with the UK partners like The Open University and the Teesside University. Apart from these tools, Botho College has also in-house tools like Student Assessment Management System (SAMS) which assists the tutors to handle and manage these cases of academic dishonesty. Though the institution was functioning from 1992, these tools were put in place for use from 2008. This paper exemplifies the reduction of this unacceptable practice from 2008 to 2011. Statistical data were gathered using questionnaires which were used to gather data from all tutors who have been associated with Botho College from the year 2008.
The paper also shares various solutions gained through the experience with students from the year 2008. The solutions might include the different strategies that could be adopted to support students from the institutional environment, creating awareness amongst students on these areas, letting them know about the consequences of such dishonesties, make them understand the evaluation criteria which has been a benchmark for other institutions in Botswana. The observations made in this paper will certainly be useful for Educational Institutions in Africa and other developing Nations to produce good graduates who would never indulge in dishonest means for their grades and can compete in the world market.
Keywords: Education, Plagiairsm.