Cheating In National Examinations In Kenya: Aristotelian Akratic Analysis Of Causes And Remedies
Examinations across the world play a vital role in the education system. Unfortunately, the process of examinations is greatly affected by the act of cheating hence giving a wrong impression on the results. This study has analysed cheating in two national examinations done in Kenya in relation to the Aristotelian concept of akrasia. Akrasia is a theory propounded by Aristotle that explains how human beings in their very nature are affected by a weak will whereby one does the opposite of what they know is right. Therefore, this study has in detail discussed the causes of cheating in two main national examinations- KCPE and KCSE- relating them to akrasia. The causes responsible for cheating in national examinations as discussed include societal factors, education system and personal characteristics. Further the researcher has discussed in detail the possible causes of akrasia. The following factors were identified as possible causes of akrasia: Baconian idols of the mind, fallacies and the will to power. Remedies that KNEC has employed in an attempt to curb this vice were also evaluated. It was noted that KNEC has employed the deterrence theory of punishment in an attempt to curb cheating. It penalizes those who get involved in cheating by getting them prosecuted in courts of law and sentenced to jail terms and hefty fines. It also cancels results of those students who get involved in the vice. This study employed two main methods of philosophical research. These were the critical analysis method and the prescriptive method. The critical analysis method tried to analyse the causes of cheating in national examinations and to analyse the remedies employed by KNEC. The prescriptive method on the other hand was used to recommend the possible solution to this problem. The researcher has suggested a possible solution to the problem of cheating where five aspects of development are to be examined. This aspects include intellectual development, spiritual/ moral development, physical development, emotional development and psychological development. Finally the researcher has given some recommendations in respect to the study. The study recommends that the learner’s interests should be left to prevail and also the education system to adopt a holistic evaluation and grading system.
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