Academic integrity: a literature review

Bruce MacFarlane, Jingjing Zhang, Annie Pun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

88 Citations (Scopus)


This article provides a literature review on academic integrity, which encompasses the values, behaviour and conduct of academics in all aspects of their practice. This is a growing area of academic research as a result of the expansion of higher education on a global basis and concerns about standards of professional conduct. The article maps the main strands of research on academic integrity by reference to teaching, research and service using 115 articles derived from both western and Chinese literature. The review indicates that much of the literature is framed in terms of misconduct or academic corruption with research ethics the dominant focus. Researchers investigating academic integrity draw predominantly on multivariate analysis using surveys/questionnaires, documentary analysis and, more occasionally, interviews. While there has been rapid growth in the literature, a stronger focus is needed on identifying ?ethical? as well as ?unethical? practice despite the methodological challenges in overcoming social desirability reporting
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-358
Number of pages20
JournalStudies in Higher Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • academic integrity
  • literature
  • methodology
  • ethics


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