Academic integrity in an online registered nurse to baccalaureate in nursing program

J Contin Educ Nurs. 2010 Nov;41(11):498-505. doi: 10.3928/00220124-20100701-03. Epub 2010 Jul 8.


Background: The number of nursing programs offering online courses continues to expand. This is a relatively new method of instruction that has not been extensively evaluated. Academic integrity in the online classroom is one area of concern. This study compared academic integrity in both an online and a traditional classroom registered nurse to baccalaureate in nursing (RN-BSN) program.

Methods: A comparative descriptive design was used to evaluate academic integrity in the two RN-BSN cohorts.

Results: The traditional classroom RN-BSN students reported higher levels of cheating compared with the online students. Self-reported cheating behaviors were higher among younger students in the traditional classroom.

Conclusion: This study did not support contemporary concerns that cheating is more prevalent in online courses.

MeSH terms

  • Codes of Ethics*
  • Computer-Assisted Instruction / ethics*
  • Computer-Assisted Instruction / statistics & numerical data
  • Data Collection
  • Education, Nursing, Baccalaureate / ethics*
  • Education, Nursing, Baccalaureate / organization & administration
  • Education, Nursing, Baccalaureate / statistics & numerical data
  • Education, Professional, Retraining / ethics*
  • Education, Professional, Retraining / organization & administration
  • Education, Professional, Retraining / statistics & numerical data
  • Ethics, Nursing
  • Humans
  • Online Systems
  • Students, Nursing / statistics & numerical data*