Predicting contract cheating intentions: Dark personality traits, attitudes, norms, and anticipated guilt and shame

Guy J. Curtis, Joseph Clare, Emma Vieira, Emily Selby, Peter K. Jonason

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Contract cheating is a critical emerging threat to academic integrity in higher education. Although some situational predictors of student engagement in contract cheating are known, little is known about the psychological predictors of contract cheating. Intentions are a key predictor of future behavior. Thus, in this study, students' (N = 459) intentions to engage in contract cheating were examined in an extended Theory of Reasoned Action (TPR) model via a cross-sectional survey. Psychopathy and Machiavellianism were included in the TRA model as precursors of attitudes and subjective norms, and anticipated guilt and shame were included as mediators between attitudes and norms, and intentions. Structural equation modeling and analysis of mediation paths revealed that psychopathy and Machiavellianism did not directly predict contract cheating intentions. Psychopathy and Machiavellianism predicted contract cheating intentions via simple and serial mediation paths. These results suggest that contract cheating intentions may be reduced by modifying students' attitudes, subjective norms, or their anticipated moral emotions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number111277
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Volume185
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

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