This paper explores the effects of academic dishonesty and violations of the Honor Code in the school of nursing. It reviews the importance of ethics and ethical behaviors in the nursing profession. There will be an evaluation of the Honor Code and a discussion as to why it is important to both students and nurses. A breakdown of the Code of Ethics will be discussed along with issues and concerns when violation occurs. The profession of nursing upholds practices that promote ethical behaviors; therefore, this paper will discuss ways of staying on track to ensure consistent practices of these behaviors.
Violation of the Honor Code and Ethical Practices in Nursing
The Field of Nursing is a highly critical field that requires the upholding of a strict code of ethics to ensure the safety and well being of doctors, nurses, and patients. The nursing profession requires honesty, integrity, and trust by both colleagues and patients. Unethical academic behaviors may foreshadow a life-long career of unprofessional behaviors if the conduct is consciously reckless. This paper will review the Honor Code and the Code of Ethics as it related to the profession of nursing.
There may be times when a student or nurse is unaware of the consequence of an action that inadvertently causes an undesirable outcome. Therefore, it is important that students in the nursing profession be held to high standards of practice where rules are set in place to promote a consistent practice of ethical behaviors. Teaching and guiding students to think and behave in an ethical way not only helps the student as a person, but also improves the healthcare environment as a whole. Langone (2007) states in her journal article Promoting Integrity Among Nursing Students, “It has been found that ethical behaviors demonstrated as a student correlate with later behaviors as a professional.”
Faculty should contemplate student learning activities that reflect possible life situations of ethical practices in the nursing field. This practice will show students the potential consequences that affect patients when being dishonest. For example, if a nurse gives a patient the wrong medication and fails to notify the physician, this could put the patient in danger. The nurse has an ethical responsibility to tell the truth even if disciplinary action occurs.
Instructors should always be clear and concise on their expectations and policies (Krueger, 2014). Academic dishonesty is such a widespread problem that some schools have taken extra precautions to ensure that every student is aware of academic policies. It is the responsibility of school leaders to create an environment that does not accept dishonest behaviors. Most institutions of higher education have limited their dishonesty cases by instituting an honor code (Langone, 2007). The expectations of the honor code should be clearly defined as to what is acceptable, unacceptable, and the potential consequences for not abiding by the code. Most honor codes discuss plagiarism and cheating as well as the importance of students demonstrating respect for their faculty, peers, and patients. It also discusses need to act responsibly. Students need to understand that any action taken that even indicates dishonesty or a lack of integrity is a violation of the honor code. Students are expected to not only turn in others that they notice or suspect of violating the honor code, but they are expected to turn themselves in as well. In addition to plagiarism and cheating, another issue that tends to occur most often is falsification of information. This can occur even in the early stages of filling out the application to get into school. This may occur when students leave out information on financial aid forms or recommendation letters from other teachers. While many people might say that these infractions are not