Relationship between Knowledge Management and Academic Integrity in a Middle Eastern University

Relationship between Knowledge Management and Academic Integrity in a Middle Eastern University

Judith Mavodza (Zayed University, UAE)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-9607-5.ch011
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Abstract

The difference between knowledge sharing as enabled in a knowledge management (KM) environment, and academic honesty continuously needs clarification and reinforcement in academic institutions. Teaching includes getting students to realize that knowledge is an asset that can be ethically used for creativity and innovation, resulting in the enhancement of the corporate image and effectiveness of a university. Studies have confirmed that academic dishonesty is an ethical challenge facing many academic institutions of higher learning. In the Middle East, the use of English as a second language is often cited as a contributing factor to students' plagiarizing, but the problem extends to the use of Arabic language sources too. Conflicts in approach may arise because KM works well in an environment of sharing, and yet acknowledging academic productivity of others may not always happen spontaneously. This is a challenge faced in MOOCs and by institutions of higher learning the world over.
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Background

In discussing KM and academic integrity, there is the requirement to understand the concepts and how applicable they are. While KM has widely been used in business, the use of its principles in academic library environments has been limited but appears to be more comprehensive than other models that focus only on regular library functions such as circulation, or technical services, or reference in that interactivity and the needs of the library users are of paramount importance. In approaching the academic integrity topic, use of KM practices is discussed in this chapter with the implication of institutional overall systemic change in teaching, learning, and library support because the latter does not stand independent of the university for which it has been set up. The change is designed to amplify the quality of academic products of a university for its marketability. Faculty are therefore expected to be qualified to meet the challenge. Thus, revelations of the proliferation of fraudsters selling fake academic qualifications in the UAE as has already been happening in other parts of the world, such as reported in Khaleej Times by Croucher (26 April 2009) and in Gulf News by Farooqui (28 May 2014) make both academic institutions and employers concerned and stay on the look-out for these. Employers want only the genuinely qualified, while universities want to have faculty who are qualified to teach and research for the education of appropriately qualified new professionals.

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