Education without fraud – how do you achieve it?

Education without fraud and corruption – that is the main message announced by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe in its Recommendation of 13 July on countering education fraud addressed to the Member States. This recommendation is a joint result of four years’ work by various stakeholders participating in the Council of Europe Ethics, Transparency and Integrity in Education (ETINED) platform.

The recommendation intends to draw attention to the promotion of ethics, transparency and integrity in the whole educational sector, i.e. from the pre-school education up to higher education. Six proposals for the Member States are provided in the Recommendation:

  • to promote quality education by eliminating education fraud;
  • to assure protection of all the pupils, students, researchers and staff at all levels of education from people providing fraudulent services;
  • to provide support for the implementation of preventive and protective measures, formation of a culture of equal opportunities, and organisation of training at all levels and in all sectors of education;
  • to keep under review technological developments, which may add to the list of activities constituting education fraud;
  • to facilitate international cooperation;
  • to contribute to dissemination of this Recommendation.

The Recommendation has 17 articles that discuss such issues as protection of education terminology, ethics codes, plagiarism, advertising and promotion of education fraud, research, use of digital solutions, protection of whistleblowers, data collection and monitoring. Exclusive attention is drawn to training about plagiarism and other infringements of academic ethics, critical thinking, academic literacy, and research. The purpose of the Recommendation is to help the Member States to counter education fraud and thus to ensure one of the human rights – the right to education.

Lithuania is represented in the ETINED platform by employees from the Centre for Quality Assessment in Higher Education and the Office of the Ombudsperson.