Performance appraisal in Hong Kong higher education

Pao Yue-kong Library Electronic Theses Database

Performance appraisal in Hong Kong higher education


Author: Hung, Ling
Title: Performance appraisal in Hong Kong higher education
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 1995
Subject: Employees -- Rating of -- China -- Hong Kong
Education, Higher -- China -- Hong Kong -- Administration
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Multi-disciplinary Studies
Pages: xii, 128 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record:
Abstract: Performance appraisal has been widely promoted as a tool for maximizing effectiveness of human resources in higher education in Europe and North America. Institutions of higher education in Hong Kong, like Hong Kong Polytechnic University, City University and the University of Hong Kong for example, have all expressed strong inclination to introduce regular performance system and/or are already doing so, in the force of circumstances inside and outside the institutions. The aims of the study are: 1) to analyze the reasons for the increasing popularity of performance appraisal in institutions of higher education; 2) to examine the potential problems of introducing performance appraisal in institutions of higher education, and thereby to suggest an appraisal model most suitable to higher education; 3) to review the practice of performance appraisal in higher education of Hong Kong against this "preferred" model; and 4) to evaluate this model from the view point of academic staff and in relation to the theory of performance appraisal. These aims are achieved through a review of the theory and practice of performance appraisal, a review of appraisal practices in UGC funded institutions (as at September/ October 1994), and a sample survey of the views of academic staff in the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. The review of the theory and practice of performance appraisal suggests two normative models of performance appraisal: one judgmental, one developmental. It is suggested that developmental approach, which aims at helping employee grow is particular suitable for professional and will thus have a better chance of success and be more acceptable to academic staff. On the other hand, the judgmental approach, usually epitomized by performance-related pay, is unlikely to work in higher education, because many features of the system of higher education and the teaching profession will make its introduction difficult. The survey of the current practices of appraisal in UGC funded institutions revealed that the use of developmental appraisal is still limited in Hong Kong higher education. However, the survey on the academic attitude towards appraisal showed that academics have a strong inclination for developmental appraisal, because they generally 1) regarded motivation, training and development as the main aims of appraisal, 2) indicated a strong preference for team appraisal, and 3) showed a strong demand for participation in the appraisal design and process. On the other hand, respondents also showed a preference for a direct linkage between appraisal and reward. These responses seem to suggest that a purely developmental model may not meet the demand of academics. The study recommended that universities implement a developmental appraisal and at the same time devise a separate procedure to assist administrative and personnel decisions. A mixed model of developmental and judgmental approaches is not advised because difficulties can be anticipated: 1) the appraiser will find it difficult to play both the role of judge and counselor at the same time, 2) there will be conflicts over the exchange of valid information required for performance evaluation and staff development, and 3) there will be conflicts in the objectives of facilitating evaluation and helping development.

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