'Honor Code' Sought For Business-School Cheaters

Thirty-four graduate students at Duke University's Fuqua School of Business are facing disciplinary action for cheating on an exam. But a survey suggests cheating is rampant among business students -- who see it as all in a day's work.

Donald McCabe, professor of management and global business at Rutgers Business School, oversaw the survey. He shared his glum findings -- and hopes for a remedy -- with CNBC's Mark Haines, on "Morning Call."

McCabe said 56% of students admitted to engaging in at least one of 13 different questionable behaviors. The professor noted that pupils in other departments also confessed to test misdeeds -- but business students had the highest numbers of admitted cheaters. Why?

McCabe explained that in the survey's "open-ended" essay questions, business students spoke of emulating behavior they expect to see in the corporate world: They believe "getting the job done is the No. 1 priority," regardless of the cost, he said. And of course, "better grades can translate into a job with a more prestigious firm and a huigher salary."

The professor hopes that the trend can be reversed via "honor code approaches." He said the goal would be to convince students that cheating is far from a "victimless crime" -- as it hurts their fellow students.

Haines added another possible motivation: "If they keep cheating, I will end up talking about them some day" on CNBC, he joked.