Academic motivation and misconduct in two cultures: A comparative analysis of US and Ukrainian undergraduates


  • Jason M Stephens
  • Volodymyr Romakin
  • Mariya Yukhymenko



The present study explored differences between United States (US) and Ukrainian undergraduates (N=378) in terms of their academic motivation and its relation to their beliefs and behaviours related to academic misconduct. Specifically, this study investigated differences between US and Ukrainian students' task value, goal orientations, moral beliefs about cheating and engagement in cheating behaviour. Results revealed several significant differences between US and Ukrainian students. While similar in their level of academic task value and mastery goal orientation, Ukrainian students had reported being less performance goal oriented than their US counterparts. Ukrainian students also reported lower judgments about the wrongness of cheating and higher levels of engagement in cheating behaviour than US students. Finally, regression analyses revealed a significant culture x task value interaction on both cheating beliefs and behaviours: among Ukrainian undergraduates, increases in task value both strengthen beliefs about the wrongness of cheating and reduce engagement in it. These results and their theoretical and educational significance are discussed.