As educators, it’s critical we steward our students throughout their educational career and provide the support necessary to ensure learners gain the essential skills to develop a positive mindset, set strength-based goals, and have the support needed to build and uphold their personal character and educational ethics.
As the first year of post-pandemic learning came to a close for our students, we wrote about how we supported our partner schools in virtual classroom learning, while ensuring academic integrity—emphasizing how learners in the Rosedale Global High School Program stayed on track with their studies, and, how we supported teachers with updated policies and practices in academic integrity to mitigate concerns as students began to complete assignments and online testing in a remote capacity. Addressing academic integrity was crucial during the pandemic, and even more so today as global educators and administrators look at ways to enhance education with modern-day approaches—from hybrid models to partnerships that include components of online learning, and even fully online teaching environments.
A reality of the education sector is that issues in academic integrity will arise, and our response to these sector issues is paramount in how the trustworthiness of an organization is perceived.
Integrity is a cornerstone of our academic delivery model. As an independent, Ontario-based Canadian private high school inspected by the Ontario Ministry of Education in Canada, Rosedale is authorized to grant the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) to graduates of Rosedale’s Global High School Program. We are proud to be the first private secondary education institution to be featured by Global Affairs Canada (Government of Canada) and we support Building on Success, Canada’s federal international education strategy that outlines the necessity of global education for global prosperity. With a profile of 62 partners with 95 schools across 17 countries, we ensure diligence in academic integrity—in our program, for our partners, and for the students and families who entrust us with creating life-changing learning outcomes for the next generation of learners. With a technology-driven and global approach to education, we’ve developed a holistic management practice with a sound framework, tools, policies and procedures to ensure a high level of academic integrity. The Ontario Secondary School Diploma is world-renowned, yet only has value when it is earned with honesty, fairness, and diligent study.
Rosedale is committed to continuous development in the education, prevention and correction of academic integrity issues, and there are three primary ways in which we promote and protect this work:
- Educate: We collaborate with staff in local schools to help students understand the value of independent thinking and provide them with the knowledge they need to avoid common pitfalls.
- Prevent: Utilize meaningful assessments that encourage original thought, critical thinking, creativity and real-world application, and employ effective practices and security when delivering tests and exams.
- Correct: Actively monitor the originality of student work across all courses and enforce policies that quickly identify and respond to academic misconduct in a timely manner.
The Rosedale Global High School Program was designed to maintain centralized control over all aspects of academic integrity, and in practice, this is achieved methodically with grading teachers, local school staff, and program administrators—working in tandem to promote and maintain a system of accountability. Here are highlights across four key areas:
Stakeholder Education and Training
As part of a comprehensive student-focused training, students complete an Academic Integrity course once per academic year to understand types of academic integrity violations and work through samples of work that contained plagiarized content. Students must demonstrate how to avoid plagiarism by utilizing best practices, and are presented with academic policies, consequences for violating policies, and an academic integrity contract that must be signed prior to each course. Equally important is ensuring our learners understand and respect intellectual property—their own, and the work of others.
We have a zero tolerance policy and mandatory training for our teachers and administrators to promote academic integrity, provide guidelines to support teachers in identifying issues, and are clear on protocols to be followed when conducting tests and exams. All evaluation-based assignments, tests and exams are graded by Ontario Certified Teachers located in Ontario, Canada. Our Grading Teachers receive mandatory training to monitor and report academic dishonesty, monitor student progress and submission history, and work with school staff to manage violations with a fair and consistent approach.
Quality of Evaluation Design
As students develop their higher order thinking skills in the Rosedale Global High School Program, they gain confidence in themselves and pride in their work, and recognize they can take ownership of their learning and drive their future success. Data shows individuals who use higher order thinking skills are able to synthesize, analyze and evaluate complex information and use their knowledge to solve problems, propose innovative ideas, demonstrate insightful reasoning, and engage in big-picture thinking—skills that support learners to be well-prepared to face obstacles in their educational career, and be equipped to respond positively to challenges they face. Our courses are designed to promote original through and exploration, and our assignments and exams are structured to minimize academic dishonesty.
Technology-enabled Academic Integrity Tools and Analysis
Disruptive technology is changing the education landscape and we’re proud to utilize a number of custom tools and third-party verified professional services to prevent, monitory and report academic integrity violations. By using Unicheck, Safe Exam Browser and our custom Academic Integrity Monitor tool developed in-house for our Learning Management System, we can quickly flag issues in an assignment or exam—identifying hotspots, intervene early, and apply corrective measures to minimize offences.
Case Management and Transparent Policies
Rosedale maintains clear policies in academic integrity and visibly places these policies in our Student and Teacher handbooks, and in the introductory session of each course. Reports of violations are investigated by both Rosedale and the staff in the relevant partner school, using resources such as proctoring videos, proctoring testimony, Grading Teacher analysis, Unicheck reports, previous student work and more. Decision-making is completed by Academic Managers at Rosedale, who provide the outcome, and consequences, to students and their parents/guardians when necessary. On-going monitoring of work is critical and school staff receives additional training. We ensure due diligence in case management and are proud of the policies we employ.
Global education and modern learning require consistency and courage in both values and practice. As we commit to continuous improvement to refine our policies and practices, we must also seek collaborative opportunities in the education sector that further showcase our credibility, not just as an education solution provider but as a leader in global education. We are proud to offer access to a world-renowned curriculum that emphasizes differentiated education and strives to create space for learners to grow into the person they want to become, and know the foundation of this rests in trust, fairness and responsibility—with students at the core.