The question about the cheating that goes on in nursing and medicine education has come up frequently in the dealings I’ve had with print, radio and TV media. The reasons for this are understandable. Everyone wants to know that the nurses treating them are qualified and capable of providing safe and suitable care.
Whilst the nurses had reason to associate with have been hard working and a credit to their profession, there is an underclass of potential nurses who do resort to cheating and plagiarism. The wider research I’ve been involved in with Robert Clarke has shown a wide range of services appearing to help students. Many of these services are optimised purely to help nurses, including essay mills and contract cheating sites offering to write nursing essays and produce nursing assignments.
I explore many of these cheating sources that some nursing students are using, along with discussing the wider implications, in this training video.
The whole area of cheating in nursing and health education is one that we’re continuing to explore, particularly in relation to contract cheating, where students are paying third parties to complete assignments for them. The methods that nursing essay mills use to market their services are of interest, as are the reasons why students resort to using these sites to bypass their education but still consider that they will be fit to practice.
Thoughts on the issues relating to cheating and nursing education are welcome and stay tuned for more training, research and discussions in these areas.
It’s an interesting feature, running to six pages in the printed version of THE (and having attracted comments on the online version).
An interesting statement is the estimate that over 15,000 customer essays are written by essay writing firms within the UK every year. That doesn’t account for the students who commit other forms of contract cheating or order from abroad.
The implication in the article is that there is no easy solution in sight, but I hope that we can do better.