Emerging Perspectives in Teaching Practice External Examining in the University of Zimbabwe Scheme of Association.
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The study was undertaken to investigate critical issues surrounding Teaching Practice (TP) external assessment in the University of Zimbabwe Scheme of Association. The participants were college lecturers appointed as external assessors for the period 2007/ 2008. Data collection involved intensive elite interviews, analysis of TP reports by team leaders and regional coordinators as well as lesson crits spanning over two years. A questionnaire administered to 18 participants yielded both qualitative and quantitative data including assessors' demographics. Findings indicated several emerging issues. The assessors were suitably qualified and experienced .despite having undergone varied college-based induction processes in which the Department of Teacher Education (DTE) had little input. Central to TP assessment was the need for objectivity, a notion most assessors found difficult to pin down. This- was compounded by several challenges in the field, which included logistics, economic, morality and bureaucratic systems. Despite all challenges, TP external assessment emerged as an indispensable aspect that needs to be maintained with improved resource input. Suggestions to improve the internal efficacy of the process are made in light o fcontemporaiy internal challenges in the Scheme of Association.