Cheating has been a significant issue over the years throughout the world, including in Indonesian Higher Education. In this study, we aimed to explore students’ perceptions of cheating, the practices they engage in when they cheat, the factors influencing their behavior, and possible solutions to stop cheating in the context of Islamic Higher Education. This mixed methods research involved 43 undergraduate students in the Department of English Language Education of two Islamic Higher Education institutions: The University of Muhammadiyah Aceh and Universitas Islam Negeri (UIN) Ar-Raniry Darussalam, Banda Aceh - Indonesia. A questionnaire comprising demographic and cheating related questions was emailed to students taking the subject, Ilmu Akidah (Theology). This subject is a third-semester optional subject offered to students at both universities. The subject covers issues about ethics, morals, good Muslim citizenship, and other universal Islamic values. Eight students were interviewed to seek their opinions about cheating in the context of Islamic education and to suggest ways to stop cheating at their university. Survey findings indicated the prevalence of cheating among these Islamic university students during their studies reached 84%, with the most common cheating practices including requesting/exchanging answers with friends during exams, duplicating texts from the internet/books and then submitting them, and cooperating with friends in doing individual assignments. The underlying issues involved external factors (i.e., exam difficulty, overloaded assignments, inadequate time for finishing assignments, and assisting friends) and internal factors (i.e., fear of low grades and failure in exams, and motivation for gaining high scores). Sixteen percent of the students claiming that they never cheated because of their religious/moral awareness, a sense of accomplishment in their own ability, and fear of academic sanctions suggestions for preventing cheating are shared along with a discussion of cheating within Islamic higher education. An important finding from the interviews was many students believed cheating was sinful and those who cheat must repent. The paper concludes with a discussion of the benefits and drawbacks of conducting mixed methods research to answer these questions and adding a set of interviews to the survey instrument.
academic integrity, cheating, undergraduate students, Islamic higher education, mixed methods
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.
Recommended APA Citation
Habiburrahim, H., Trisnawati, I., Yuniarti, Y., Zainuddin, Z., Muluk, S., & Orrell, J. (2021). Scrutinizing Cheating Behavior among EFL Students at Islamic Higher Education Institutions in Indonesia. The Qualitative Report, 26(3), 1033-1053. https://doi.org/10.46743/2160-3715/2021.4683