Academic Dishonesty, Bullying, Incivility, and Violence: Difficult Challenges Facing Nurse Educators

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Prior to the NLN Education Summit 2005, the authors took part in a conference call to discuss some of the difficulties and challenges faced by faculty in schools of nursing. Familiar with the growing body of published work on troublesome behaviors in American schools and the workplace, we determined to use a panel discussion format to explore the nature of these difficulties and capture the meanings these experiences have for the individuals involved. By sharing personal experiences and presenting a review of the literature, we hoped to give voice to troublesome and sometimes painful aspects of our roles as educators. In our vision for the panel discussion and this article, our desire was to be part of the solution. Our goal is to explore these experiences in a way that encourages self-reflection, teaches acceptable behavior, and supports positive change in the educational environment. We hope to promote opportunities for all involved in nursing education — students, faculty, and administrators — to grow and flourish. This article follows the sequence of the panel presentation, which began with a comprehensive review of the literature on academic dishonesty, followed by a discussion of low-and high-tech forms of cheating used by students.We addressed the need to process social information correctly and develop positive and acceptable social skills needed for professional development, and we discussed bullying, issues of incivility among faculty members, and the troublesome practice known as “mean girl games.” Our names are presented alongside our contributions, but all of us answered questions and participated in the lively discussion that took place at the Summit.

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