#ICAI2021 Re-cap: My Reflections on International Collaborations

March 5, 2021

I was delighted to take part in three sessions for the International Center for Academic Integrity (ICAI) conference, which was held online this week. With over 1200 registrants, this was the largest ICAI conference ever.

In terms of my own contributions to the conference, this year I focused on collaborative work with others. For me, this means that the work is conceptualized and developed jointly, every step of the way. The end result is stronger, more interesting, and more dynamic than if it had been created by any one individual alone. In an article I co-authored with Rachael Edino a few years ago, we showed that academic integrity research in Canada has mostly been small scale and has lacked collaboration across institutions and across countries. Ever since, I have been on a mission to actively engage in and promote research collaborations that not only include researchers from multiple institutions, but extend to international partnerships, too. I am super excited to say that goal was certainly achieved through collaborative presentations at this year’s ICAI conference, as I had the opportunity to showcase work with 6 colleagues and 1 PhD student, spread out across 7 countries. Here’s a recap:

Student Perspectives on the Impact of Race in Educational Surveillance and Proctoring Technologies

Parnther & Eaton #ICAI2021 Slide 1

Ceceilia Parnther, St. John’s University, USA

Sarah Elaine Eaton, University of Calgary, Canada

Presentation date: March 1, 2021

# of registered session participants: 349

Parnther & Eaton #ICAI2021 Slide 2

Session re-cap: We brought a critical race perspective to electronic and remote proctoring technologies that have become prevalent during COVID-19. E-proctoring is a rapidly growing technology for higher-education institutions. Although this technology is promoted as a method to promote academic integrity by offering faculty control over the remote testing environment, students have expressed concern and anxiety about these monitoring tools. Specifically, students note anxiety and discomfort resulting from the use of these tools. These feelings may be exacerbated for students of colour due to the algorithmic biases that position whiteness as normative. We interrogate the ethical complexities of e-proctoring and other academic integrity technologies through the lens of equity and diversity.

A Chilean Perspective on Academic Integrity During COVID-19: Analyzing Possible Benefits and Challenges of Online Learning Communities

Moya & Eaton #ICAI2021 - Slide 1

Beatriz Moya Figueroa, University of Calgary, Canada

Sarah Elaine Eaton, University of Calgary, Canada

Presentation date: March 1, 2021

# of registered session participants: 78

Overview: Beatriz is a new PhD student studying with me at the University of Calgary. This session marked Beatriz’s debut into the international academic integrity community. Due to COVID-19, Beatriz has remained in her home country of Chile throughout the pandemic and has not yet been able to physically come to Canada. She has been getting to know members of the Canadian academic integrity community by joining into our weekly Integrity Hour. This experience of working virtually across several months during Beatriz’s first year as a PhD students served as the basis for this collaborative session.

Session description: The COVID-19 pandemic pushed Chilean universities towards a quick transition into emergency remote teaching. Moreover, faculty identified a rapid increase in academic misconduct cases and the need to promote an academic integrity culture in their institutions. This new scenario called for new strategies to exchange academic integrity practices to help face the pandemic’s obstacles. In this presentation, we analyze the possible benefits and challenges of online learning communities for Chilean higher education institutions inspired by the experience of the Canadian “Integrity hour” online learning community. We also discuss new opportunities as the effects of COVID-19.

You can check out the video recording of our session here.

Publishing Your Academic Integrity Research: Advice From the Editorial Board of the International Journal for Educational Integrity

IJEI Presentation #ICAI2021

Sarah Elaine Eaton, University of Calgary, Canada

Tomáš Foltýnek, Mendel University in Brno, Czech Republic

Zeenath Reza Khan, University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD), UAE

Thomas Lancaster, Imperial College London, UK

Ann Rogerson, University of Wollongong, Australia

Presentation date: March 4, 2021

# of registered session participants: 77

Whova - Screen Shot 2021-03-05 at 12.13.28 PM - IJEI

Session recap: We offered an interactive workshop on how to publish your academic integrity research. This session is offered by editorial board members of the International Journal for Educational Integrity.

Learning Outcomes:
Understand what makes excellent quality academic integrity research; what is publishable in a high-quality peer-reviewed journal and what is not; Understand how to prepare a manuscript for submission to a peer-reviewed scholarly journal; Learn how the journals’ scope and submission guidelines are important for prospective authors; Discuss pitfalls of the publication process and how to avoid them; and Gain insights into what double-blind peer review is and how it works. Check out an abbreviated session recording here.

Reflections: This session was the most logistically complex, by far. We had 5 presenters co-presenting in real time from 5 countries across 5 very different time zones. The session was held at 14:00 Eastern, which meant that Ann Rogerson was just rolling out of bed at 06:00 the next day in Wollongong. Needless to say, she arrived with coffee in hand. Meanwhile, Zeenath Reza Khan was looking forward to going to bed after the workshop, as the session was starting at 11:00 p.m. for her over in Dubai. It was noon for me in Calgary, 19:00 for Thomas Lancaster in the UK, and 20:00 for Tomáš Foltýnek in Brno.

This was the first time the five of us had ever co-presented together and our preparations for this session happened entirely asynchronously, using Google slides and also corresponding via e-mail to prepare the entire presentation. We each had slides assigned to us to speak to, but due to the time zones, we did not do a practice run for the session. For me, this was the most incredible presentation as it was truly a privilege to collaborate with so many dedicated colleagues from so many corners of the world. I can’t say for sure, but I think we might have been the most internationally diverse presentation team at this year’s conference.

Concluding Reflections

The conference organizers did a tremendous job of planning and delivering an excellent online event. None of the sessions I took part in either as a co-presenter or as a participant had any technical issues, which really speaks to how much preparation went into this conference prior to the event and “in the background” during the conference itself.

As others with expertise in educational technology will attest, the technology works best when it is invisible. That is to say, when there are technology problems, everyone turns their focus to the tech issues, often at the expense of developing human connections. In this case, the technology itself was very much invisible and the opportunity to connect with fellow collaborators in a very human sense was a highlight of the conference for me.

I think the most remarkable part of co-presenting all of these sessions is that the virtual environment facilitated and provided opportunities to collaborate across countries and time zones. Although I have had the pleasure of meeting Ann Rogerson and Thomas Lancaster in person at previous events, I have yet to meet any of my other fellow collaborators “in real life”. I very much look forward to the day when that happens.

In expect that by the time we get the meet face to face, it will be like meeting old friends and we will slip into conversations and laughter easily. To be able to collaborate with so many international colleagues from across continents was a special and remarkable aspect to this virtual conference.

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This blog has had over 2 million views thanks to readers like you. If you enjoyed this post, please “like” it or share it on social media. Thanks!

Sarah Elaine Eaton, PhD, is a faculty member in the Werklund School of Education, and the Educational Leader in Residence, Academic Integrity, University of Calgary, Canada.

Opinions are my own and do not represent those of the University of Calgary or anyone else.


Workshop: Exploring Racism and Academic Integrity through a Circle Process

October 16, 2020

ATESL 2020I’m excited to partner with colleagues from Norquest College and the Alberta Council on Academic Integrity to present this workshop at the Alberta Teachers’ of English as a Second Language (ATESL) 2020 E- Conference: Seeds of Possibility: Curiosity, Drive, and Innovation.

Workshop Description

In this session participants will explore and experience the Circle of Courage and circle process by engaging in a dialogue on anti-racism and racism related to academic misconduct.

The Circle of Courage (Brendtro, Brokenleg, & Van Bockern, 2005) is a model of resilience and positive development based on Indigenous values of Belonging, Mastery, Independence and Generosity. Applied together with a circle process, this way of approaching the relational space in classrooms helps create the conditions for students and instructors to engage more authentically and openly in difficult complex topics. As a holistic approach to discussion this a way to spur conversation about the dynamic faced by English as additional language learners.

Keywords: Academic integrity; Restorative Justice; Restorative Practices; Circle Process; Racism

Reference:

Brendtro, L., Brokenleg, M., & Bockern, V. (2005). The circle of courage and positive psychology. Reclaiming Children and Youth, 14(3). 130-136.

Workshop Materials

You can download our workshop materials for free from here: http://hdl.handle.net/1880/112689

Presenter bios

Sheryl Boisvert, B.Ed, CPA, CGA is currently a full-time instructor at NorQuest College. Though she has performed a variety of roles since 2001, Sheryl has found being an instructor to be the most fulfilling.  She has always believed that students gain a better understanding of the material they learn when they can go beyond textbook theory and put concepts into practice.

Nazanin Teymouri, MBA, is as an instructor at NorQuest College in the Faculty of Business, Environment, and Technology. Currently her time at the college is split between teaching and co-leading research initiatives on academic integrity. With a background in communication and business, her focus is on analysis, cultural understanding, and collaboration aimed at bettering the learning environment.

Jamie Ahksistowaki Medicine Crane is Blackfoot from Kainai and Piikani, an activist, advocate, educator, and multi-disciplinary artist. Shes very passionate in education and is currently working with NorQuest College as a curriculum developer- in regards to Indigenous education, history and perspectives, building faculty capacity, supporting curriculum development and Indigenization strategy.

Sarah Elaine Eaton, PhD, is an Associate Professor at the Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary. She is a long-standing member of ATESL. Her research focuses on academic integrity.

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This blog has had over 2 million views thanks to readers like you. If you enjoyed this post, please “like” it or share it on social media. Thanks!

Sarah Elaine Eaton, PhD, is a faculty member in the Werklund School of Education, and the Educational Leader in Residence, Academic Integrity, University of Calgary, Canada. Opinions are my own and do not represent those of the University of Calgary.


Webinar: Creating a Culture of Equity in Academic Integrity: Best Practices for Teaching and Learning with Dr. Ceceilia Parnther

October 7, 2020

Creating a Culture of Equity in Academic Integrity: Best Practices for Teaching and Learning – Webinar

Presenter: Dr. Ceceilia Parnther

Overview:

Ceceila ParntherThis session will review inequitable practices related to academic integrity. These practices threaten to undermine the vital work of celebrating and affirming a diverse academic community. This presentation will consider the ramifications for students, teachers, and researchers, and offer research-based solutions to refine current approaches to teaching and upholding academic integrity.

Learning Outcomes:

Engaged participants will:

  1. Define the current challenges to equity in academic integrity.
  2. Recognize current practices and the ways they may uphold unequal outcomes.
  3. Review best practices for equitable practice in academic integrity.

Presenter bio:

Ceceilia Parnther, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator in the Department of Administrative and Instructional Leadership at St. John’s University. Her research interests include academic integrity education and equitable college student success initiatives. Before joining the faculty, Ceceilia worked in student and academic affairs in various capacities, including academic integrity, advisement, and student conduct. Among others, her most recent research is found in Higher Education Research and Development, Innovative Higher Education, and The Journal of College Student Retention.

Date: Friday, October 9, 2020
Time: 10 – 11:30 a.m. – Mountain Time – Please adjust to your local time zone.
Locations: Online via Zoom

Please note: This workshop will be recorded, registration will close on Thursday, October 8, 2020 at 1 p.m. (MT) and a Zoom link for the workshop will be sent to you the morning of the webinar. The recording link will only be sent to registered participants.

Register here.

Keywords: academic integrity, academic misconduct, student conduct, equity, diversity, inclusion

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This blog has had over 2 million views thanks to readers like you. If you enjoyed this post, please “like” it or share it on social media. Thanks!

Sarah Elaine Eaton, PhD, is a faculty member in the Werklund School of Education, and the Educational Leader in Residence, Academic Integrity, University of Calgary, Canada. Opinions are my own and do not represent those of the University of Calgary.


Strategies for Equitable Student Treatment during COVID-19 and Beyond

July 10, 2020

Questions around equity and access for students during the coronavirus pandemic have come up over and over again. In this post I offer some concrete things you can do to treat students more equitably during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

#1: Stop saying “should”.

“Students should have access to high speed Internet.” (Translation: Students who live in areas with unreliable Internet connectivity are less worthy than their peers with premium telecom packages.)

“Students should be able to submit their assignments on time”. (Translation: I care more about my students complying with assignment deadlines than I care about the students themselves.)

“Students should be able to read a .pdf copy of the readings online. (Translation: Just because I can easily read a .pdf copy of an article online, I don’t care about students who either can’t or prefer not to.)

Stop spouting off about what you think students “should” be able to do. Accept that whatever you think should happen may not (or simply cannot) happen and there is likely nothing you can do about it – except make a commitment to try to meet students where they are at, on their terms. Accept the reality of what is, not what you want it to be.

#2: Stop requiring students to buy new technology.

Requiring students to buy webcams for e-proctoring of their exams is senseless if there are none for sale in any of the shops or online. Requiring them to buy new technology that meets a minimum “standard” of the institution creates financial burdens on less privileged students. It’s a form of financial discrimination that privileges affluent students. If there are “minimum institutional standards” then the institution plays a role in ensuring students have what they need.

#3: Stop the coercive control.

Making statements about what should happen, or what students need to buy is a form of coercive control. The implications are that students will do what they are told “or else” (e.g. or else don’t bother registering, or else drop the course, or else drop out of school entirely) is downright discriminatory. The threat of students not being able to continue their studies if they cannot comply with imposed obligations such as buying a webcam due to financial or other limitations is a form of punishment. The messaging may not be as overt as that, but the implication is there. Trying to coerce students into being something they are not (e.g. financially affluent, academically excellent, socially privileged). This kind of coercive control is not only humiliating for students, it a form of instructional and institutional violence.

#4: Involve students in decision making as much as possible.

I get that institutional leaders are frantically trying to make the right decisions about how to move forward. And there’s lots of factors that are still outside of any individual’s control right now, but that’s no excuse to exclude students from decisions that affect them directly. Whenever possible, engage representatives from student government on committees, councils, and in departmental meetings, or any other meeting where having student representation helps to create inclusivity and equity.

#5: Recognize that there is no such thing as a “typical” student.

The stereotype of the single, white, affluent student who studies diligently in the library and maybe does some varsity sports is long, long gone, if it ever existed in the first place. The reality is that your students are likely to have multiple and competing priorities that include jobs, family or caregiving responsibilities, and come from more diverse backgrounds than the average faculty member experiences in a year. Their living situation might be chaotic, noisy, or unpredictable. This does not equal “bad”. That same living situation could also be happy, lively, and punctuated by moments of spontaneous laughter. Other situations could be the exact opposite: Seemingly calm, cool, and collected to the outside observer, but secretly miserable or abusive. The reality is that we simply cannot know or fathom the multitude of personal or family circumstances students are living in right now.

All of this is to say that as instructors and leaders one of our responsibilities is to stop assuming, and start asking. Stop obliging and start offering. Meet students where they are at, not where you want them to be. In short, focus more students’ dignity and less instructional or institutional demands.

Now more than ever, we need to make a commitment to equitable and just teaching and learning practices.

Related posts:

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This blog has had over 2 million views thanks to readers like you. If you enjoyed this post, please “like” it or share it on social media. Thanks!

Sarah Elaine Eaton, PhD, is a faculty member in the Werklund School of Education, and the Educational Leader in Residence, Academic Integrity, University of Calgary, Canada. Opinions are my own and do not represent those of the University of Calgary.


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