Sarah Elaine Eaton - A woman with short curly hair and glasses, wearing a blue shirt and a black jacket. The photo is taken outdoors and there is green foliage blurred in the background.

Dr. Sarah Elaine Eaton

Pronouns: she/her/hers


Associate Professor

Werklund School of Education, Specialization, Leadership

Academic Director

Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Director (Interim)

Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Contact information

Phone number

Office: 403.220.6378


Office: EDT916

For media enquiries, contact

Clayton MacGillivray
Content and Media Specialist

Twitter: @UCalgaryEduc


Educational Background

Doctor of Philosophy Leadership, Policy and Governance, University of Calgary, 2009

M.A. Hispanic Literature, University of Calgary, 1997

B.A. (Honours) English Literature, Saint Mary's University, 1992


Dr. Sarah Elaine Eaton, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Education in the Werklund School of Education. She is also the Academic Director, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI), Education and Academic Integrity in the Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (OEDI). She holds a concurrent appointment as an Honorary Associate Professor, Deakin Learning Futures, Deakin University, Australia. She served as the inaugural Educational Leader in Residence, Academic Integrity at Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning, University of Calgary (2019-2022) and has served as the Chair, Leadership, Policy, and Governance Specialization Area (2021-2022).

Dr. Eaton’s research focuses on academic ethics in higher education. Her work can be found in the Canadian Journal of Higher Education, the British Educational Research Journal, Educational Policy, and the Journal of Academic Ethics, among other places.

Dr. Eaton is the Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal for Educational Integrity (Springer Nature), a Q1 (Education) journal published by BMC Springer. Dr. Eaton was the co-founder (2018) and co-editor (2018-2020) of Canadian Perspectives on Academic Integrity

Dr. Eaton is an internationally recognized authority in the field of academic ethics. In 2020 she received the National Research and Scholarship award from the Canadian Society for the Study of Higher Education (CSSHE) for her contributions to research on academic integrity in Canadian higher education. In 2022, she received the outstanding research award from the European Network for Academic Integrity (ENAI). Her books include:

Handbook of Academic Integrity (2nd ed.), (Eaton, ed., 2023)

Fake Degrees and Fraudulent Credentials in Higher Education (Eaton, Carmichael, & Pethrick, eds., 2023)

Ethics and Integrity in Teacher Education (Eaton & Khan, eds., 2023).

Contract Cheating in Higher Education: Global Perspectives on Theory, Practice, and Policy (Eaton, Curtis, Stoesz, Clare, Rundle, & Seeland, eds., 2022) 

Academic Integrity in Canada: An Enduring and Essential Challenge (Eaton & Christensen Hughes, eds., 2022)

Plagiarism in Higher Education: Tackling Tough Topics in Academic Integrity (2021)

Women Negotiating Life in the Academy: A Canadian Perspective (Eaton & Burns, eds., 2020)

External Appointments and Elected Roles

Editor-in-Chief, International Journal for Educational Integrity

Chair, Society for the Study of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE) Committee on Academic Integrity and Contract Cheating (CAICC)

Memberships & Affiliations

  • American Educational Research Association (AERA)
  • British Educational Research Association (BERA)
  • Canadian Association for the Study of Education (CSSE)
  • Canadian Association for Teacher Education (CATE)
  • Canadian Society for the Study of Higher Education (CSSHE)
  • International Center for Academic Integrity (ICAI)
  • European Network for Academic Integrity (ENAI)
  • International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (ISSOTL)
  • Society for the Study of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE)

In addition, Dr. Eaton offers expertise to a variety of government and non-profit organizations. From 2012 to 2017 she supported the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Office of English Language Programs with her knowledge in the areas of program development, evaluation and strategic planning for educational organizations. Her work has contributed to the ongoing development and improvement of public diplomacy programs enacted through the teaching of American English that operate in more than 100 countries worldwide.



Areas of Research

Scholarly Activity

Dr. Eaton’s research program focuses on academic ethics, specializing in academic integrity including plagiarism, contract cheating, and academic misconduct policy.

Funded Research:

  • Understanding the Impact of Artificial Intelligence on Higher Education, Sarah Elaine Eaton, Principal Investigator, SSHRC Connection Grant ($25,000 CAD) Grant #611-2022-0398)
  • Partenariat universitaire sur la prévention du plagiat (PUPP) / University Partnership for the Prevention of Plagiarism (PI: Dr. Martine Peters, UQO). Sarah Elaine Eaton, Co-investigator. SSHRC Partnership Grant 2021-2027 ($2,499,980 CAD) Reference: 895-2021-1016; Website:
  • Artificial Intelligence and Academic Integrity: The Ethics of Teaching and Learning with Algorithmic Writing Technologies. Sarah Elaine Eaton, Principal Investigator, Robert Brennan (Co-Investigator), Jason Wiens (Co-Investigator), and Brenda McDermott (Co-Investigator). University of Calgary Teaching and Learning Grant 2022-2025 $40,000 CAD; Website:
  • Academic Integrity Online: Developing Support Mechanisms for Online Graduate Students to Understand Plagiarism. Sarah Elaine Eaton, Principal Investigator, Jennifer Lock (Co-Investigator) and Meadow Schroeder (Co-Investigator) University of Calgary Teaching and Learning Grant $35,206.00 CAD
  • Pre-service teachers at risk: Intervention strategies for and by teachers. Alberta Advisory Committee for Educational Studies (AACES) Grant). Amy Burns, PI; Sarah Elaine Eaton (Co-Investigator), Diane Gereluk and Katherine Mueller (Co-Investigators) $5,984 CAD
  • Investigating academic integrity in the Werklund School of Education: Process, policy and perceptions. Werklund School of Education, Office of Teaching and Learning, Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Grant.  Sarah Elaine Eaton, Principal Investigator, $10,000 CAD.
  • Student Learning in Synchronous Online Classes. Werklund School of Education, Office of Teaching and Learning, Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Grant.  Barbara Brown, (P.I.), Sarah Elaine Eaton (Co-investigator) and Meadow Schroeder (Co-investigator) $10,000 CAD.
  • Developing a Community-Based Bachelor of Education Program, Dianne Gereluk (P.I.), Roswita Dressler (Co-investigator) and Sarah Elaine Eaton (Co-investigator), SSHRC Insight Development Enhancement Grant, Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary. $2500 CAD
  • Building a Robust Online Teacher Education Program - Dianne Gereluk (P.I.), Roswita Dressler (Co-investigator) and Sarah Elaine Eaton (Co-investigator), Werklund School of Education, Office of Teaching and Learning, Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Grant. $10,000 CAD.
Research Expertise:
  • Academic integrity
  • Academic misconduct
  • Admissions fraud
  • Artificial intelligence and Large Language Models (LLMs), as they relate to ethical teaching, learning, assessment, and academic integrity
  • Cheating
  • Contract cheating
  • Corruption
  • Educational administration and leadership
  • Ethics
  • Fake degrees
  • Fraud
  • Fraudulent credentials
  • Higher education administration and leadership
  • Plagiarism
  • Research ethics
  • Research integrity
  • Equity, diversity, inclusion, accessibility, and decolonization
  • Social justice

Participation in university strategic initiatives


Course number Course title Semester
EDER 602 LEC 02 02 Program & Practice Evaluation 2020
EDER 70308 LEC 03 03 Directed Study 2021
EDER 705 LEC 01 01 Doc Seminar in Educ Leadership 2020


Artificial Intelligence for Teaching, Learning, Assessment and Academic Integrity

Our multi-country transdisciplinary research team investigates the ethical use of artificial intelligence for teaching, learning, and assessment in higher education. This project has been funded by the following sources:

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), 2023 Connection Grant (#611-2022-0398)

University of Calgary Teaching Grant (2022)

University of Calgary International Research Partnership Workshop Grant (2023)


  • Award for Exemplary Research, European Network for Academic Integrity (ENAI). 2022
  • Research and Scholarship Award, Canadian Society for the Study of Higher Education (CSSHE). 2020
  • Teaching Excellence Award, Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary. 2015


In the News

More Information

Press and Media

Featured Story:

Canadians can't bribe their way into university. Following the US College scandal, Jonathon Muma finds out if Canadians bribe their way in.

— Breakfast Television & CityNews Calgary (@BTCityNewsCGY) March 14, 2019

Dr. Eaton is an experienced media guest. She has been featured by CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation); CTV; Global, City TV, as well as various print / web outlets and podcasts. 


Eaton, S. E. (2020, July 5) Academic Misconduct during the Pandemic. Television interview with Jennifer Burke for CTV News Channel, Canada.

Eaton, S. E. (2020, March 3) Cheating scheme leaves 40 U of A students facing 'significant sanctions'/Interviewer: Television interview with Jason Halbauer. CTV News Edmonton & Calgary.

Eaton, S. E. (2019, October 11) Young Kids Targeted for Contract Cheating /Interviewer: J. Rocher. Bridge City News, Lethbridge, AB. Retrieved from:

Eaton, S. E. Muma, J. (Reporter). (2019, March 13). Canadian parents can't bribe universities to accept kids. Television interview with Jon Muma for CityTV News. Canada: Rogers Media Inc. Retrieved from:


Eaton, S. E. (2020, March 3) Cheating allegations at the U of A -- among computing science student/Interviewer: M. Cummings. CBC News, Edmonton AM.

Eaton, S. E. (2020, February 7) Exam cheating in Newfoundland/Interviewer: B. Hillier. CBC Newfoundland Morning.

Eaton, S. E. (2019, September 9) Academic Integrity: The Cheating Epidemic/Interviewer: M. Smyth. Lynda Steele Show, Global News Radio: 980 CKNW, Vancouver.

Calgary Eyeopener: CBC Radio.  (2017, October 18). The problem of contract cheating. (Interviewed by host, David Gray.)

Eaton, S.E. (2012, May 18). Language learning for lifelong fulfillment and joy. Your Life, Unlimited, CJOB 68, Winnipeg, MB: Interviewed by Stephanie Staples, host.

Print / web media

Lai, L. (2020, April 17). Explore academic integrity and combat virtual cheating in online courses. UCalgary News. S. Eaton, interviewed.  Retrieved from 

Antoneshyn, A. (2020, March 4). Cheating scheme leaves 40 U of A students facing 'significant sanctions'. CTV News (Edmonton). (Eaton, S.E., interviewed.)

Slark, C. (2020, February 5). Students had exam questions before writing it: BUSU president. Brandon Sun. Retrieved from (Eaton, S.E., interviewed).

Snow, J. (2019, October 9). Commercial contract cheating: How common is it? U Calgary News. Retrieved from (Eaton, S.E., interviewed).

Student and Enrollment Services Staff. (2019, February 27). What is “pay to pass”?: Understand the issues around paying for academic support. UToday. Retrieved from (Eaton, S.E., interviewed).

Werklund School of Education Staff. (2018, August 3). Quotation marks, crib notes, and contract cheating: How a new online tutorial is building awareness among online students at the Werklund School. UToday. Retrieved from (Eaton, S.E., interviewed).

Sowa, J. (2018, March 16). Campus scholars warned about increasing problem posed by predatory journals and conferences. UToday. Retrieved from

Ruddock, K. (2018, January 2). Digital repository improvements expand accessibility of research by UCalgary scholars. UToday. Retrieved from (Eaton, S.E., interviewed).

Schellenberg, J. (2017, Nov. 8). University of Calgary looks to combat emerging academic black markets. Gauntlet. Retrieved from (Eaton, S.E., interviewed).

Hunt, S. (2017, October 18). (Eaton, S.E., Interviewed.) Contract cheaters auction off homework to dark web ghostwriters. CBC News Calgary. Retrieved from

Rice, B. (2017, January 17). (Eaton, S.E., Interviewed.) When The White House Calls…. Retrieved from


C. Hunt (Producer). (2020, July 5). Episode: The Human Risk Podcast: Dr Sarah Eaton on Ethics In Academia.S. Eaton, interviewed.

S. Lawrence (Producer). (2020, April 30). Episode 141: Academic integrity: Do the right thing. S. Eaton, interviewed.