‘Just turn to us’: the persuasive features of contract cheating websites

Rowland, Susan, Slade, Christine, Wong, Kai-Sheng and Whiting, Brooke (2017) ‘Just turn to us’: the persuasive features of contract cheating websites. Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education, 43 4: 1-14. doi:10.1080/02602938.2017.1391948

Author Rowland, Susan
Slade, Christine
Wong, Kai-Sheng
Whiting, Brooke
Title ‘Just turn to us’: the persuasive features of contract cheating websites
Journal name Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1469-297X
Publication date 2017-10-24
Year available 2017
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/02602938.2017.1391948
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 43
Issue 4
Start page 1
End page 14
Total pages 14
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Subject 3304 Education
Abstract Academic integrity is important to universities and students must abide by codes of academic conduct around assessment. Students are, however, subject to multiple pressures around assessment, some of which can push them to cheat. Modern contract cheating websites are the fronts for sophisticated, commercial operations that offer individually written assessment items for a fee; to combat their use we need a better understanding of the tools they use to persuade students to become customers. In this study we examined the persuasive features of 11 highly-visible contract cheating websites and mapped these features to a previously used persuasiveness framework. We find that contract-cheating websites use a variety of credibility, interactive and informative features designed to persuade students to use their services. In addition, the sites offer low-cost, customisable products available in very short timeframes. We suggest ways in which educators can encourage academic integrity by talking with their students about how the websites promulgate their ‘just turn to us’ message.
Keyword assessment
Contract cheating
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
Institute for Teaching and Learning Innovation Publications
School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences
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Created: Fri, 03 Nov 2017, 09:08:18 EST