Perceptions of college lecturers and students towards the assessment of student teachers with special needs in inclusive contexts: A case of one college of teacher education in Zimbabwe


  • Patrick Sibanda Faculty of Applied Social Sciences, Zimbabwe Open University, Zimbabwe
  • Mlungisi Moyo United College of Education, Zimbabwe
  • Royal Ntini United College of Education, Zimbabwe


Assessment, Students with special needs, Inclusive contexts


Assessment processes are critical in educational practice since quality education can be measured through these processes. The purpose of this study was to explore perceptions of college lecturers and students on the nature of assessment procedures obtaining for students with special needs in inclusive contexts. The study is grounded in Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences and the social model of disability. The observation that teachers’ colleges in Zimbabwe often have no inclusive policy guidelines on the assessment of students with special needs motivated the study. A case study was conducted within the qualitative paradigm. Semi structured questionnaires and focus group discussions were used as the main data collection instruments for 15 lecturers and 20 students chosen using simple random and purposive sampling respectively. The main findings revealed that there were challenges of assessing students with special needs together with their peers without special needs. It was observed that extra time given to students with special needs was done ad hoc as there were no policy guidelines. The results further revealed that it was not clear whether the bases for assessment were premised on the student’s level of disability, educational skills, competences or concepts. Ultimately, the study concluded that there was no equality of opportunities in the assessment of students with disabilities at the teachers college. In view of these findings, the study recommended the need for modifications whose decisions should be based on agreed policy guidelines and a national framework for the assessment of tertiary education students with special needs.


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How to Cite

Sibanda, P. ., Moyo, M. ., & Ntini, R. . (2017). Perceptions of college lecturers and students towards the assessment of student teachers with special needs in inclusive contexts: A case of one college of teacher education in Zimbabwe. Scientific Journal of Pure and Applied Sciences, 6(7), 597-605. Retrieved from




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