This study explores the perceptions of Egyptian undergraduate students at The American University in Cairo, an American-style private university in Egypt, as related to academic integrity. The research questions were developed in order to discover how these students perceive the scholarly environment in which they learn, if they engage in dishonest behaviors, and if so, why. The qualitative results of this mixed-method study were collected via online survey and photovoice interviews, an ethnographic method in which participants take photographs in response to prompts provided by the investigator. In the survey, students were asked to define academic integrity and explain how they learned about the concept, and also respond to statements about the scholarly environment on campus. The photovoice participants took photographs in response to the following prompts, and others related to their research processes: something that shows how you feel about plagiarism, something that shows how you feel about cheating, something that shows how you learned about academic integrity. The results include the responses to 114 completed surveys, supported by the photographs and content of the eight photovoice interviews. The qualitative data was coded line by line, and larger themes were identified. Students indicate that their colleagues engage in academically dishonest behavior regularly, and pointed to poor time management, pressure for high grades, and helping friends as reasons for this. The paper argues that academic librarians are in a unique position to promote academic integrity on campus, and provides some suggestions for advocacy.
© 2014 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin/Boston