Perceptions of college lecturers regarding the use of performance appraisal for promoting professional development
Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences
University of South Africa (UNISA), Dept. of Educational Leadership and Management, South Africa
Performance appraisal in the Further Education and Training Colleges cannot be an end in itself. The ultimate goal is to improve accountability and quality of learning outcomes. Using a systems theoretical perspective, this article examines the performance appraisal process in the colleges to determine the extent to which it is linked to professional development of lecturers. The performance of lecturers is pivotal in delivering the curriculum effectively. This article reports on selected findings based on the training needs assessment study conducted in 2012 using a mixed method approach and a purposive sampling technique. A total number of 373 lecturers and 80 managers participated in the study. The findings reveal major inconsistencies in the manner in which performance appraisals are conducted despite the fact that performance standards, instruments and criteria are prescribed in the national guidelines supplied by the Department of Education. The process is affected by subjectivity and lack of proper management control. It is concluded that these weaknesses undermine the very purpose for which performance appraisal was introduced. An overhaul of the current appraisal system is recommended in favour of a new system that is designed to suit the expectations and needs of these colleges.