International Journal of
Psychology and Counselling

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Psychol. Couns.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2499
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJPC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 222

Full Length Research Paper

Perceived psycho-social and school factors contributing to malpractices in internal examinations among secondary school students in Kakamega-Central Sub-county: Implications for counseling

Patricia Naliaka1*, Peter Odera2, and Moses Poipoi
1Department of Agriculture, Sang’alo Institute of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 158-50200, Bungoma, Kenya. 2Department of Education Psychology, MasindeMuliro University of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 190-50100, Kakamega, Kenya.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Received: 04 October 2014
  •  Accepted: 13 February 2015
  •  Published: 31 March 2015


Examination malpracticeis rated as one of the greatest problems that undermine the foundation of educational practicein Kenya today. The magnitude of the problem and the dangers posed bythe phenomenon have been identified by stakeholders as national malady that requires drastic solution.  Thus, this study attempted to investigate the view of students about the psycho-social and school causes of and roles of guidance and counselling in addressing the malpractices in internal examination in Kakamega Central Sub-county. A total of three hundred and fifty nine  students were randomly sampled from twelve schools selected at random for the study. Data were collected using researcher developed questionnaires. Four research questions were raised and answered using frequency counts, simple percentage and means scores. However, results indicated that poor study habits, laziness, lack of self confidence, family pressure to excel and host of others were considered by students as the major psycho-social causes ofexamination malpractice. Inadequate preparation for examination,poor teaching, overcrowded exam rooms and poor invigilation were considered by respondents as the causes of examination malpractice. On the roles of the school guidance and counselling units most of  the respondents indicated that the G&C unit exists and talks to them about self esteem, peer pressue management, self confidence and that exam cheating is wrong. However, most of them did not agree that G&C can assist students involved in exam cheating to change. The psycho-social factors are the predisposing factors to exam malpractices while the school factors are the environmental causes. Most schools have active guidance and counselling units. However, these units do not seem to be effective in addressing the problems of malpractices in internal examinations in secondary schools. Based on these findings, it was recommended that students and teachers should be given enlightenment  campaign that will highlight the  consequences of examination malpractice. Also, government should sensitize all citizens to basic ethical values of selfworth, dignity of labour, integrity and personal responsibility. Professional guidance  counselors should  be  employed  and  posted to secondary schools to help students in self understanding and self management as well as the development of effective study habits in relation to how they can utilize their assets and manage their abilities for optimal development. Further, all schools should be adequately equipped and staffed to address issues of overcrowding and poor invigilation.
Key words: Examination malpractice, secondary schools students, counselling.