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Review Papers | Library Science | Kenya | Volume 5 Issue 8, August 2016
Factors Contributing to Information Ethics Violations among LIS Students in Public Universities in Kenya
Abstract: Academic honesty and respect for intellectual property has been given considerable concern in tertiary institutions but concerns of information ethics have increased in the recent years evidenced by rising plagiarism, increased hacking, privacy violation, and matters relating to the digital divide. Drawing from the Social cognitive theory, this study sought to establish presence of information ethics violations, prevalence and contributing factors among Library and Information Sciences (LIS) students in public universities in Kenya. Respondents comprised of students, lecturers and heads of department drawn from four public Universities in Kenya. The study established from respondents that IE violations incidences existed in LIS schools. This was manifested in the form of plagiarism, acts of hacking, breach of confidentiality and piracy, with plagiarism as the most prevalent among LIS students. A number of factors contributed to information ethics violations by LIS students which included but not limited to reluctance in conducting research and inadequate research skills, limited knowledge on how to conduct research, laxity among lecturers to detect and curb the vice, competing interests on the students time and attention, lack of clarity in regulations on matters relating to IE, peer influence, poor time management, and inadequate information resources. Students also considered the availability of commercial research assistance around the university and downloading papers online as a major contributing factor. The study found that punishment has been used as a deterrent measure for information ethics violations in LIS schools, but its effectiveness in mitigating the vices has been challenged, hence suggests the inclusion of information ethics education. This study advocates for ethics education in LIS training as a measure for behaviour change in mitigating information ethics violations.
Keywords: information ethics violations, ethics education
Edition: Volume 5 Issue 8, August 2016,
Pages: 1236 - 1239