Academic fraud, accreditation and quality assurance: learning from the past and challenges for the future
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This paper starts by contextualizing the current trend of increasing academic fraud and corrupt practices in quality assurance and accreditation processes. Several factors are considered, such as the diversification of higher education services and delivery systems, increased competition among students and institutions, globalization and the cross-border education phenomenon. The next section focuses on the opportunities for fraud and corruption that have been observed in two different contexts: first, in countries in which mechanisms for examination and accreditation are under the authority of central public bodies; and second, in countries where these mechanisms are regulated and controlled by non-governmental bodies. Special attention is given here to international delivery services, including nstitutions with large numbers of overseas students, extramural education institutions and e-higher education. The next section considers six key strategies that can be adopted to address these challenges, namely: regulating the market by means of transparent criteria, reducing the risks of conflict of interest, using more appropriate management tools, developing standards and codes of practice, facilitating public access to information and establishing and using awareness indicators, commonly referred to as red flags. After presenting the rationale behind each strategy, the paper then provides examples of good practices. The paper concludes with policy recommendations for the national, regional and international levels.
CitationHallak, Jacques.; Poisson, Muriel. Academic fraud, accreditation and quality assurance: learning from the past and challenges for the future. "Report: Higher Education in the World 2007: Accreditation for Quality Assurance: What is at Stake?", 2007.