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Strategies For Controlling Examination Malpractice In Nigerian Universities: A Case Study Of Imo State University




         This study considered the strategies for controlling examination malpractice in the Nigerian universities using Imo State University as a case of study. Examination malpractice as a problem to the university system is the massive and unprecedented abuse of rules and regulations pertaining to internal, external and public examinations. To this end, six research questions were formulated by the researcher to guide the study. Using random sampling method, a total of 567 respondent was used where 528 student and 39 lecturers were gotten from the population. A questionnaire was designed and administered (SCEMNU) in the course of studying using the descriptive survey research design. A four point Likert type scale system was used in the collection of data, the questionnaire comprises of twenty six items (26). Mean and standard deviation were used to answer the research question. The result indicates that adequate provision of teaching and examination facilities, de-emphasis of paper qualification and certification, moral discipline, values, norms and culture inculcated in the lives of our students, proper curriculum implementation and responsible deployment of lecturers with integrity and adequate security for examination papers are practical strategies for controlling examination malpractice. The educational implications were highlighted alongside with recommendations and suggestions for further studies.



In this chapter the researcher organizes it under the following subheadings: Background to the study, statement of the problem, scope of the study, purpose of the study, significance of the study and research questions.

Background to the study

One of the myriad of problems facing our university educational system is examination malpractice. It has eaten deep into the fabric of our university system to the extent that some student may possibly call for the legalization of examination malpractice in our university system. It often begins from the setting or the taking of the examination, there marking and grading, to the release of the result and the issuance of certificate. The persistent falling of our educational standard is becoming alarming, the pollution of our education towards the wrong direction. Our dependency on external technology result from our inability to purge out this menace.

In Nigeria, education became an imperative tax for national development and self reliance of the citizenry, hence the introduction of the universal basic education (UBE) scheme in Nigeria it is through education that various skills, knowledge, values and competences are transmitted in a society from generation to generation.

The learning environment and our campus are no more conducive and proper for teaching and learning. Teaching and learning have deteriorated and inveterate education valued system have lost focus. More so teachers and teaching qualities have failed, learning and schooling failed along side with it major support pillar, the examination.

The destructive nature of examination malpractice has posed problem that threatens the quality of our hard earned educational reputation. In the year 2003, there was a public outcry over paper leakage and cancellation of result by West African Examination Council (WAEC). Since then the phenomenon has persisted in all levels of our education system including the Nigerian universities.

Prof  Fabian Osuji in a summit held at “Abuja recently stressed thus” the quality of a nations manpower is a direct proportion to the quality of its educational system and any country with a prious system will have poor manpower as the psychometric in education will be useless.

El-Rufai (2006) stated that there is likely to be a growing skepticism and distrust about the value of Nigeria university certificate as a result of examination malpractice which has devilled educational sector.

Obviously, it because of the prevalent and alarming rate of examination malpractice and other relating problem in our institutions, particularly in our universities which prompted the condition of post U.M.E.

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Examination for entrance into the Nigerian universities according to the way this appears, one may ask at this junction what is examination malpractice? Different bodies or individuals have different definitions or ideas about examination malpractice. IMO STATE UNIVERSITY in it hand book (2005/2006) state that examination malpractice are those unfair practice and infringement for regulation of Imo state university.

Aliyu (1996) look at examination malpractice as any irregular behaviour related to the examination exhibited by candidates or anybody charged with the conduct of examination hall before, during and after the examination.

Jega (2006) saw examination malpractice as any form of  misbehavour that leads to the alteration of or a tempering with the prescribed ways of conducting examination in any given system.

Psychological view said that examination malpractice is all form of cheating which directly or indirectly false the ability of the student performance. Obikeze (2003).

The damage cause by examination malpractice in our various schools and society at large include laziness in all manner, fatally discourage like spirit of industry and dedication to hardwork, it allows the mediocres to ascend into position of power and authority with attendant on negative –plights ; promotes the productive of leader who are totally lacking in terms of integrity, it has made parents, guardians, institutions and government to waste their economic resources which have alternative uses.

Examination malpractice is an academic dishonesty or academic fraud , it creates problems for the teachers/ lecturers. It affects the way the faculty and even the school is view.  The researcher says that 77% of  teachers find it difficult when dealing with cheating student , it is the most stressful part of their job.

The menace also include breakdown of our ethnical values and the pervasive culture of fraud, corruption, injustice and many social ills are anchored in examination malpractice. It has contributed to the production of army of unemployed youths and finally it has constituted a grass threat to the national development and growth.

The devastating nature of examination malpractice has stirred the concern of very well meaning  Nigerian’s. It has prompt the researcher to delve on the study of examination malpractice in our universities.

Ultimately, examination malpractice destroys the academic world, it destroys the main aim of education – the gaining of knowledge and  practical skills. This means student can obtain a certificate without gaining knowledge. This phenomenon makes the learning process unfair and as a result, even the honest students and teachers feel its negative effect.

All sort of examination malpractice take place in and around the examination venues in order to achieve examination success Ivor (2010), which are identified by Omotosho (2012), Ijaiya (2008) and Adekale (2005) as student lack of adequate preparation, poor school facilities, poor sitting arrangement and socio-economic factors.

Student of today have this believe that they cannot pass their examination without some external assistance because of the anxiety to present a certificate in order to get a good job. The stress and anxiety to meet with demands of different subject, creating tremore of failure or scoring low grades force some candidate to fall for the menace. Ikura (2012)

Individual difference can also be seen as a factor, failure to recognize this can make weaker student to compare themselves with the naturally gifted one’s. The academic weak one’s may get themselves involved in examination malpractice.

According to Agbo (2008) among forces behind examination malpractice is the teacher related. Most often laxity to duty result in anxiety created by syllabus. Some teachers/lectures are incompetent and so do not give student the right requirement for examination Ikura (2010).

Ezezogor (2008) concluded that student involvement in examination malpractice is due to teachers or lectures encouragement.

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Some lecturers aid student in buying question papers of the examination to be done while some lecturer who are assigned to supervise examination connive with the student to cheat due to the level of indiscipline, some even demand for money during and after the examination.

Generax and Mcleed (2005) found that permissive lecturers attitude and low lecturer vigilance lend to increase cheating which affect student performance.

Denga and Denga (2008) affirmed that rich parent tends to dangle money before teachers to assist their children to pass internal examination. Okpan (2006) affirmed that parent believed that their children cannot do well in both internal and external examination so they are ready to go extra miles including hiring people to write exams for their children. Esu (2004) posited that one of the causes of examination malpractice is non-challant attitude and permissiveness of many parent failure to provide their children with the necessary guidance. Most have failed in their duties to provide the basic materials that will interest their children to learn.

Agbo (2008) affirmed that there is an old saying that “justice delayed is justice denied”. Government and it’s agencies are handling the cause of examination malpractice with kid gloves and law is seriously recognizing sacred cows. The government of any nation is responsible for proper education of the citizens by providing necessary fund for all government educational agencies but here in Nigerian government has neglected her own duties of making her education standard and the sector is not properly funded. Abdulkareem (2003).

Lack of equipment and teaching facilities in school are indicators that the commitment of Nigerian government to fund education has dwindled considerably. UNESCO has recommended that 26% of the national budget of a country must be devoted to education but in Nigeria , less than 10% has remained the annual budget for education every year.

Okafor (2009) perhaps the best explanation for the wide spread of examination malpractice in Nigeria is clearly a reflection of the large society that nurtures cheat and mediocre and turn them into celebrities. It is a reflection of the moral decadence of the society who has pen robbers, smuggles and drug barons who are glorified by their ill-gotten wealth. The society applauds ill-gotten wealth at the expense of hard work, it is the same society that produce politicians who engage in electoral malpractice to the land on the corridor of power. Therefore perpetrating examination malpractice has almost become part of the social culture.

In order to combat student fraud during examination, the researcher agreed that a set of measures , both administrative and educational , parent as well as the government are needed to increase interest in learning.

Statement of the problem

The obvious cases of examination malpractice in our school system especially at university level is a scenario that really matters  when we talk about national development  and realization of national educational objectives and goals.

It is a problematic situation that needs a clarion call of all and sundry to put hands together to arrest and re-dress the ugly situation. The plethora of seminars, conventions and write against examination malpractice in our universities have not solved the problem neither have the rustication and expulsion of students from the school ameliorated the issue.

However , this ugly phenomenon of examination malpractice in our university demand urgent measures to combat with in order to save Nigerian universities, our certificate and degree from not becoming a thing of ridicule. It is in view of this the researcher is poised at arriving at the strategies for controlling examination malpractice in the universities of  Nigeria.

Scope of the study

This study focused on the strategies for controlling examination malpractice in Nigerian universities a case study of  Imo state university which is situated in Owerri capital territory of Imo state.

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Purpose of the study

The main aim of the study is to determine strategies that could be used to control examination malpractice in Nigerian universities using Imo state university as a case study, specifically other purpose includes:

  1. To inculcate in the life of our student moral discipline, values, norms and culture.
  2. To determine the extent if good curriculum implementation and proper teaching by lecturers could help in curbing examination malpractice.
  3. To investigate the extent provision of adequate learning and examination facilities would help in eliminating examination malpractice in Imo state university.
  4. To investigate the extent provision of qualified and sufficient number of lecturer would help break off examination malpractice.
  5. To find out the extent of proper security in the preparation of examination paper would help to fight examination malpractice.
  6. To find out whether reduction in emphasis on paper qualification and certificates could help in combating examination malpractice.

 Signification of the study

The importance of teaching and learning as emphasized by the researcher is the two sides of a coin. This study will relentlessly help in improving curriculum implementation and teaching in an effort to control examination malpractice in Imo state university and other citadels of learning.

This study is significant in that the laziness of student will be jettisoned and discourage through it, also knowing that poor state of school and examination facilities stir examination malpractice, the study is embodied with provision of adequate learning, examination materials and facilities with the aim of eliminating examination malpractice by the government.

This study will equally go a long way in showing the relevance of providing and recruiting qualified and sufficient number of lecturers with high moral etiquette and integrity in a bid to exterminate examination malpractice by the government bearing in mind the high emphasis place on certificate.

This study if implemented will help reduce the unwarranted importance attached on certificate by members of the society. The study would equally help the teachers and the school administrators have clues on the causes of examination malpractice in our school of learning and proffer measures of eliminating same to enhance real learning.

The government and the society would appreciate the study in that it would help them realize the goals and objectives of education in Nigeria. The sister practice of examination malpractice like cultism, hooliganism, truancy and mediocrity in the society and school would be lessen, in addition to , this study will be of immense help in the re-orientation of student and the society by embarking on good examination ethics if implemented.

This study would ultimately help Imo state university and other citadels of learning maintain the validity, reliability and integrity of their certificate and honor awards.

Research question

         To successful carryout this study in a way that will yield intended result, the following research question were formulated:

  1. To what extent will moral discipline, values, norms and culture inculcated in the life of our student help in the elimination of examination malpractice?
  2. To what extent will good curriculum implementation and proper teaching help in curbing examination malpractice?
  3. To what extent is the provision of learning and examination facilities help halt examination malpractice?
  4. How would deployment of qualified and good number of teachers with integrity in our examination hall be a factor to control examination malpractice?
  5. To what extent would installation of proper security on examination question paper curb examination malpractice?
  6. To what extent de-emphasis on paper qualification helps in eliminating or combating examination malpractice?

Pages:  73

Category: Project

Format:  Word & PDF        

Chapters: 1-5

Material contains Table of Content, Abstract and References.

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