An examination of the role of attitudinal characteristics and motivation on the cheating behavior of business students

Ethics and Behavior 17 (3):281 – 302 (2007)
This study examines cheating behaviors among 422 business students at two public Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business-accredited business schools. Specifically, we examined the simultaneous influence of attitudinal characteristics and motivational factors on (a) reported prior cheating behavior, (b) the tendency to neutralize cheating behaviors, and (c) likelihood of future cheating. In addition, we examined the impact of in-class deterrents on neutralization of cheating behaviors and the likelihood of future cheating. We also directly tested potential mediating effects of neutralization on cheating behavior. Using structural equations modeling procedures, we conducted an assessment of the validity of a modified version of the K. J. Smith, Davy, Rosenberg, and Haight (2002) model of cheating behavior and its antecedents. The modified model included motivation as a potential predictor of cheating behavior. Results supported the differentiation of the theoretical constructs within the specified process model. Furthermore, tests of the aforementioned theoretical model indicated a significant positive relation between extrinsic motivation and prior cheating and a significant negative relation between both intrinsic motivation and academic performance, and prior cheating. Finally, prior cheating had a significant positive relation, whereas deterrents had a significant negative relation to likelihood of future cheating.
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DOI 10.1080/10508420701519304
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