Dr Mariëtte Fourie has been appointed as quality manager from 1 July this year. She says she is very excited about the Community of Practice for Academic Integrity (CoPAI) forum and the engagement opportunities it presents.


Watch this video to learn more about the Community of Practice for Academic Integrity (CoPAI) forum.

You as NWU staff members now have the opportunity to make valuable contributions with regard to academic integrity by becoming part of the recently established Community of Practice for Academic Integrity (CoPAI) forum.


Webinar kicked off the conversation


The establishment of CoPAI follows a webinar  hosted on 27 May by the NWU’s School of Philosophy in the Faculty of Humanities, in partnership with the journal Transformation in Higher Education.


That webinar formed part of the Curriculum Conversations seminar series of the Faculty of Humanities and brought students and lecturers together to find solutions to cheating, dishonesty and plagiarism.


The webinar was titled: “Cheating, dishonesty and plagiarism with online teaching and learning. What are students saying? Can we fundamentally change it?” and was the starting point for staff and students to engage in debates that have focused and will continue to focus on academic integrity at the university.


Going beyond academic misconduct


The follow-up conversation in June, where CoPAI was launched, investigated what integrity entails if one goes beyond academic misconduct.


With Prof Anné Verhoef, director of the School of Philosophy, playing a leading role, the project will be driven from the Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL) and the Quality Enhancement Office across all eight faculties and three campuses.


This initiative is funded from the Special Projects and Research Directorate in CTL under the leadership of Dr Esmarie Strydom.


“With CoPAI as an extension of this opportunity, we recognised that there is a need to engage in critical conversations on this dominant discourse in the higher-education (HE) online landscape, where a holistic and multidisciplinary approach is called for,” says Dr Mariëtte Fourie, quality manager for academic programmes at the NWU’s Quality Enhancement Office.


Quoting Prof Robert Balfour, deputy vice-chancellor for teaching and learning, Mariëtte says academic misconduct might be an unwelcome topic, as academic misconduct is difficult to discuss, let alone evaluate, but it is a topic that cannot be avoided.


“The approach attempts to also engage all management levels in faculties, as well as all support departments at the NWU. This is the birth of a cohesive vision for academic integrity at the NWU, and the beginning of a long-term project in which we will strive to diversify and grow,” says Mariëtte.


She invites NWU colleagues to become part of the multidisciplinary forum. “Be on the lookout for our CoPAI website and forthcoming communication.”


For more information, contact anne.verhoef@nwu.ac.za or mariette.fourie@nwu.ac.za.


Light the torch for

To a values-driven institution like the NWU, honesty and good moral behaviour ― the cornerstones of academic integrity ― are high on the agenda for the university community.