Western education has become synonymous with modern civilization, enlightenment and socialization. This is because the more advanced nations of the world, with their superlative and result-oriented qualitative education have become the unassailable parameters for human transformation, innovation and social change (Emaikwu, 2012). Education is expected to train the mind of its recipient for effective performance. It equips the individual with the information necessary for high level of human functioning. To be regarded as an educated person, an individual is expected to pass through the whole process of examination conducted by a competent and recognized body (Emaikwu, 2012). Adequate and proper acquisition of relevant knowledge and skills in school subjects and disciplines of study is invariably a function of quality education (Okara, 2012). Examination as part of evaluation is aimed at determining a learner’s level of skill acquisition or intellectual competence and understanding after a given training. Examination is the measurement of proficiency in knowledge and skills, either in oral or written forms, and evaluating the adequacy of these properties possessed by candidate. This is the pivot around which the whole system of education evolves (Akpan, 2011; Ajibola, 2011). Evaluation usually enables the teacher to be effectively ready for further teaching as this form of evaluation is often regarded as a feedback. But when examination is not properly conducted, the expected feedback may not result. Consequently the result of such evaluation leads to wrong decision and judgment which affect the teacher, the learner, the entire education industry as well as the society. A reality that cannot be ignored is that no matter how lofty, how enviable, how laudable, how gigantic the education goals are, how relevant the school curriculum is organized, if no provision is made for accurate evaluation of learning progress, all these efforts will be a wasteful venture (Duze, 2011). Examination could be conducted for the purpose of selection, classification and certification.
Examination is the main source through which the knowledge and skills acquired is determined in secondary schools. It is organized in order to evaluate, assess and test the cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains of the learners. In the past examination were strictly and ethically conducted, but these days there are lapses in the system resulting into examination malpractices among students. Evidence abounds of increasing incident of cheating in examination by students at schools, colleges, which conflict with the core purpose of education (Murdock, Hale and Weber, 2001).
Udoh (2011) noted that the issue of examination malpractice in secondary schools is a national emergency situation. Examination malpractice in Secondary Schools in Ebonyi Local Government Area educational system is widely discussed as a cankerworm that poses a great threat to authenticity of educational qualifications. It is a major challenge to examination bodies, the government of Ebonyi State, schools, administrators and parents. Before the advent of western type of education, traditional Nigerian education was based mainly on experience and practice, its mode of instruction was simple as knowledge was passed on orally and through practical tests, students then only had to commit to memory, learn by rote, or through observation (Ibia, 2006). Because traditional Nigerian education placed little or no emphasis on certification, students had the proper view of education, seeing it as a means to an end not an end in itself. Besides, the Nigerian culture then frowned at dishonesty and would not hesitate to sanction offenders (Agogo, 2006).
Examination malpractice has been defined by various researchers. According to Fasasi (2008), examination malpractice is any wrong doing before, during or after any examination. The Centre for Academic Integrity (CAI, 2007) defined examination malpractice as dishonest behavior related to academic achievements that include any form of advantage by one student over the others. Oloruntoba (2002) referred to examination malpractice as all forms of cheating during an examination, which covers the leakage of question papers, provision of answer during an examination and so on. It refers to the general irregularities, violation of or infringements on examinations rules and regulations before, during or after the conduct of examination (Ivor, 2010). Examination malpractice in its technical term is an act that contravenes the rules and regulations of a particular examination body set at a particular period of time (Animasahun and Ogunniran, 2014). They also went ahead to state that many of these irregular behaviour or misconducts surround examinations and it came to an alarming rate in the last three decades. Various rules and regulations and corresponding sanctions for various malpractices are normally enlisted by various examination bodies, but hardened and daring candidates try to find innovative ways to outwit authorities (Animasahun, 2013). Examination malpractice has grown from a mere stretching of the neck (giraffing) to see what another candidates is writing during examination or consulting unauthorized notes or books inside or outside the examination hall to such sophisticated method as the use of micro-computer, mobile phones and gun to intimidate those concerned with the administration of the examination (Ivor, 2010). It is saddening that examination bodies, government functionaries, school authorities, invigilators, parents and students all participate in the iniquitous examination malpractices (Saxe, 2012). The hue and cry about examination malpractices which take place at all level of the Nigerian educational system is nothing but a reflection of the corrupt society. The Nigerian society is that which celebrates mediocrity and views cheating as being smart (Animasahun and Ogunniran, 2014). The society does not want to know how an individual achieves success but the important thing is the success. In the actual fact, examination malpractice is a catalyst to the corruption in the society. The politicians employ rigging at elections and enjoy enviable political offices; and so the students cheat from primary to tertiary institutions to move from one level of education to another.
To make it worse, it is not only students that are involved, parents, teachers, school heads, examination officials all collude with students to perpetrate this misconduct (Ijaiya, 2004). The collusion between one and more of these agents make it more difficult to combat. Even the penalties stipulated in Act 33 of the 1999 federal constitution ranging from cancellation of result to 21 years jail term have failed to achieve any significant shift from the cheating culture (Olanipekun, 2011).
According to Berliner (2009), examination ethics project is currently leading a war against examination malpractice. However, the continuous engagement of students in examination malpractices especially during the West African Examination Council (WAEC) and National Examination Council (NECO) give indication that such efforts have proved ineffective.
The issue of examination malpractice has been of most concern to educators, parents, government and other agencies that are concern with education in Nigeria. The foregoing indicates that examination malpractice is a deliberate act of wrong doing or an unethical behavior employed by an individual to undermine the integrity of an examination and the examination body. According to Ejiogu (2001), general moral decadence and the high premium placed on achievement and certificates by Nigerians has in recent times spawned examination fraud. The general overdependence on educational certificates as a measure of one’s knowledge and competence has led to a mad rush by most people for educational certificates (Sofola, 2004). In a bid to acquire such certificates, many have resorted to unethical means—foremost among which are examination malpractices—just to acquire the certificates at all cost. This study therefore examines the effects of examination mal-practices in Nigeria secondary schools.
ISSUES OF EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE AMONG SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN EBONYI LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF EBONYI STATE
INTRODUCTION Our society is faced with various kinds of malpractices. It is very common to see teachers failing to do their professional duties properly. Examination malpractice is one of such acts where people do things wrongly in an interrupted way to achieve or acquire correct things. Salami (1995) explained examination malpractices as all... Continue Reading
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CAUSES AND EFFECT OF EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS: A CASE STUDY OF SOME SELECTED SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN OREDO LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF EDO STATE ABSTRACT The purpose of this research work is to find out the causes and effect of examination malpractice in secondary school, using some selected Secondary Schools in Oredo Local... Continue Reading
CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES OF EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS: A CASE STUDY OF SOME SELECTED SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN OREDO LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF EDO STATE ABSTRACT The purpose of this research work is to find out the course and consequences of examination malpractice in secondary school, using some selected Secondary Schools in Oredo... Continue Reading
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