TUTEES’ PERCEPTIONS OF TUTORING AT A UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY IN SOUTH AFRICA

S. Hassan

Cape Peninsula University of Technology (SOUTH AFRICA)
There is ample literature evidence that suggests that tutorials are effective in promoting learning among tutees. This paper contributes to that conversation by reporting on findings of a quality enhancement initiative that was based on an evaluation of tutorials from the perspective of tutees. The impetus for the study was derived from the fact that there was limited information regarding the effectiveness of tutorials at the University under study.

Engestrom’s Activity Theory was employed as a theoretical framework in the formulation of research questions, the design of the research instrument and the analysis of data. Using self-administered questionnaires containing structured and unstructured items for the collection of quantitative and qualitative data respectively, tutees’ perceptions were solicited at a University of Technology in South Africa.

The main findings showed that 85% of tutees deemed tutorials to be instrumental in improving their examination marks. Although tutorials were effective in enhancing learning (and achieving the object), they were not always scheduled in class timetables and not all departments and faculties subscribed to the notion of tutorials. This created a secondary contradiction between the object and rules. This paper concludes with recommendations for how the University under study could capitalize on the implementation of tutorials, by transforming the rules, for the enhancement of learning (rule-object link) in order to improve the throughput rates and pass rates, that is, the outcomes.