Skip to main content
Affective Responses of Students Who Witness Classroom Cheating
Educational Research Quarterly
  • Michael W Firmin, Cedarville University
  • Amanda J. Burger, Cedarville University
  • Matthew Blosser
Document Type
Publication Date
For this study, 82 general psychology students (51 females, 31 males) witnessed a peer cheating while completing a test. Following the incident, we tape recorded semi-structured interviews with each student who saw the cheating event for later analysis. Using qualitative coding and methodology, themes emerged regarding students' emotional reactions to witnessing the cheating incidences. We discuss students states of anxiety, frustration, and in some cases—empathy for the student they witnessed cheating. Overall, students showed relatively wide variability in their emotional reactions, ranging from hostility to compassion. One of the most common reactions was that students did not want to accept responsibility for what they saw and wished that the situation would just go away.
  • Affective response,
  • cheating
Citation Information

Firmin, M., Burger, A., & Blosser, M. (2009). Affective responses of students who witness classroom cheating. Educational Research Quarterly, 32, 3-15.