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Challenges facing continuing professional development (CPD) of academic staff of the colleges of education in Ghana

Vol.12(2), pp. 112-120, July-December 2020
DOI: 10.5897/IJEAPS2020.0653
Article Number: 52769DC64353
ISSN 2141-6656
Copyright © 2020
Author(s) retain the copyright of this article
International Journal of Educational
Administration and Policy Studies
Full Length Research Paper
Challenges facing continuing professional development
(CPD) of academic staff of the colleges of education in
Entsie Nasir Yaqub1*, Clement Owusu-Cole2 and Clara Frempong Ofosua3
1Pro Vice Chancellor‟s Office, University of Cape Coast, Ghana.
2Department of Education and Professional Studies, Presbyterian College of Education, Abetifi, Ghana.
3Department of Languages, Presbyterian College of Education, Abetifi, Ghana.
Received 6 April, 2020; Accepted 2 July, 2020
Professional development is critical in the life of every organization in positioning workers to meet
changing trends of globalization. This study seeks to look at a critical analysis of the challenges facing
Continuing Professional Development (CPD) of academic staff of the colleges of education in Ghana.
The exploratory, descriptive and evaluative case study approach that combined both qualitative and
quantitative methods were used which basically adopted the questionnaire and the interview schedule
in the collection of data. The census and the purposive sampling techniques were used in collecting
data from 364 respondents constituting tutors, Human Resource Management and Development
(HRMD) committee members and chairpersons, vice-principals and quality assurance officers. Primary
data collected through the instruments used were analysed using the mean and standard deviation
techniques. Text analyses were also done for the interview schedule data. The results of the study
revealed that colleges of education do not maximise the full potential of benefits that accrue from CPD
programmes due to some profound challenges such as lack of a systematic and comprehensive
training needs analysis and weak interaction between the institution seeking the training and the
institution providing the training. The study recommended that CPD programme be linked to the
learning needs analysis and integration of knowledge with everyday practice. Management of colleges
of education must endeavor to have an appraisal system linked to personal development planning of
Key words: Challenges, continuing professional development, colleges of education, training, development.
Professional development is critical in the life of every
organization in positioning its human resources to meet
changing trends of globalization. Human resource (HR) is
the organisation‟s most crucial resource whose
behaviors, talents and aspirations affect the other
resources that the organization uses, the organizational
efficiency and its effectiveness (Agyenim-Boateng, 2008).
DeSimone and Harris (1998) as cited in Owusu (2011)
put it that “people are an inimitable asset and that their
skills are one thing that competitor organisations cannot
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imitate” (p. 1). It can be deduced from many reports that
the competitive strength of companies, social
organisations and countries are no longer strictly tied to
physical assets or resources, but to the intellectual
attributes of their knowledge workers. This was confirmed
by Dixon and Hamilton (1996) when they upheld from
their analysis that HR constitutes between 40 and 80% of
wealth worldwide while natural resources are only a little
more than 10% of wealth in most parts of the developing
Now, the argument is that after expending a
considerable outlay of the organisation‟s efforts to obtain
suitable employees, works that organisations have to do
are to ensure that human resources are maintained,
refined and utilised. These are achieved through adoption
of systematic approach to training and development
(T&D) of staff which invariably per its orientation has
metamorphosed to a new concept currently referred to as
continuing professional development (CPD). The need for
such approach emanates from the fact that survival and
growth of organisations in a constantly changing and
increasingly complex environment depends on the
existence of observed and nurtured knowledge and skills.
CPD of employees is an issue that has to be faced by
every organization. The quantity and quality of training
carried out may vary from one organization to another.
Cole (2002) has outlined some factors that influence the
quantity and quality of training and development activities
to include: degree of change in the external environment
(For example, technological change, new legislation
amongst others); degree of internal change (For example
new processes, new markets, etc.); Availability of suitable
skills within the existing workforce; adaptability of existing
workforce; the extent to which the organization supports
the idea of internal career development; the commitment
of senior management to training as an essential part of
the economic success; the extent to which management
sees training as a motivating factor in work; and
knowledge and skills of those responsible for carrying out
the training.
In educational context, the European Union as cited in
Newman (2013) opined that “within educational
institutions, teaching professionals are the most important
determinants of how learners will perform; and it is what
teachers know, do and care about that matters” (p. 1). It
could be deduced from the European Union‟s assertion
that the indispensability of the human capital (staff) of the
colleges of education (CoEs) cannot be overemphasized
in the governance structure. A regular investment of time
in learning and development should be seen as an
essential part of professional life, not an optional extra,
with learning an integral part of work (Owusu, 2011).
However, no matter how well qualified or successful the
professional may be, further development is always
Ghansah (2009) in making reference to the three eras
in the economic history of the world believed that with the
Entsie et al. 113
emergence of knowledge-based economies, human
capital had become a significant source of wealth for
individuals and organisations. This reflects equally in
Schultz (1994) assertion as cited in Afreh (2018) that “the
knowledge and skills which people bring to their jobs as a
result of their education and training, should be regarded
as a form of capital which is capable of providing returns
and therefore requires investment to develop” (p. 3).
Assessing needs for HRD
For organization to meet the needs and aspirations of
CPD, there is the need for an indebt assessment of
peculiar needs, aspirations and directions of an
organization. The concept of need according to
DeSimone and Harris (1998) typically refers to a
discrepancy between what an organisation expects and
what actually occurs. Gilley et al. (2002) further stress
that it is useful to think of need as a gap between a
current set of circumstances and some desired change or
desirable set of circumstances. Discrepancies may
become the foundation of a training or CPD need. Needs
identified in this sense may help focus on correcting
substandard performance and in some cases, a CPD
intervention such as coaching or skill training may be
necessary to correct the discrepancy.
Noe (1999) as cited in Owusu (2011) postulated that
need assessment typically involves organisational
analysis, person analysis, and task analysis.
Organisational analysis involves considering the context
in which training will occur. It determines the
appropriateness of training, given the company‟s
business strategy, its resources available for training and
support by managers and peers for training activities.
Person analysis helps to identify who needs training and
what kind of training they need. It involves: determining
whether performance deficiencies result from a lack of
knowledge, skill, ability (a training issue) or from a
motivational or work design problem; identifying who
needs training; and determining employees‟ readiness for
training. Task analysis is the first most criteria that helps
in identifying critical knowledge, skills and behaviours
demands for training of employees with knowhow to
complete their tasks.
Finally, Ampomah-Mintah (2017) studied how
management T&D needs are assessed in Libyan
industrial companies and the criteria used in selecting
trainees for management courses. Data was collected
through the administration of questionnaires and
interviews with managers. It was revealed that the
techniques used were mostly dependent on indications
from performance reports and the views of supervisors. It
was discovered that administrative functions were
practiced without regard to acceptable standards and
decisions related to management were mostly dependent
on personal relations, family ties, tribalism, nepotism
114 Int. J. Educ. Admin. Pol. Stud.
among others rather than established procedures.
Performance appraisal as an essential component in
Management must take decisions on employee
remuneration, transfer, promotion, discipline as well as
CPD. Due to the importance of these personnel matters,
organisations attach great importance to the official
assessment which management make on their
employees. To this end, performance appraisal has
occupied the attention of human resource management,
organizational behavior and industrial researchers.
To start with performance appraisal is essentially a
formal mechanism of reviewing individual employee
performance. Performance appraisal which is variously
termed performance review, annual appraisal,
performance evaluation, employee evaluation and merit
evaluation is an on-going process of evaluation which
gives management the opportunity to measure both the
behavior and outcome of employees in the workplace,
collection and analysis of data on the overall capabilities
and potentials of individual worker in an attempt to make
decision in tune with a purpose (Agyenim-Boateng,
2008). Thus, it could be deduced that basically
performance appraisal can be conceptualized as
“activities through which organizations seek to assess
employees and develop their competence, enhance
performance and distribute rewards” (Fletcher as cited in
Agyenim-Boateng, 2008).
Evaluation of training and development programmes
Given the importance of training programmes, one might
expect that HRD programmes are regularly and carefully
evaluated. Many articles have been written about the
importance of conducting evaluations, but more
organisations pay lip service to evaluations than actually
conducting them. Gilley et al. (2002) intimated that
successful training programmes must meet specific
learning objectives, measure the effectiveness of learning
specialist and the competencies of programme design.
The question is: did the training programme enable the
learner to develop adequate knowledge, skills and
attitudes in order to close the gap between „what is‟ and
„what should be‟? Again, why is not evaluation done more
frequently? There are several possibilities. Evaluation
processes require time, resources, procedures and
expertise, thus making it difficult to indulge in.
On the basis of a research by Manghan and Silver as
cited in Owusu (2011) which suggest very few of
organisations assessed the full cost of training activities
and therefore were unable to evaluate the benefits. This
is supported in a study of 80 of the largest business
organisations in the United Kingdom in which Hussey as
cited in Owusu (2011) found that only 33% of the
respondents felt that their organisations evaluate CPD
Several studies have been conducted on the benefits of
CPD in the universities. For example, in a study
conducted by Chikari et al. (2015) on lecturers‟ views
towards performance on private high educational
institutions in Botswana. They found that lecturers viewed
CPD as a panacea for professional growth, efficiency and
teaching effectiveness. They recommended that CPD
implementation is essential and required stakeholder
involvement. Another study by Melesse and Gulie (2019),
on teacher CPD and its impact to quality in education in
Ethiopia. They found out that CPD implementation helps
teachers to access new ideas, share experience and
engage in professional interactions. A similar study
conducted in Ghana by Mensah (2016), examined the
influence of teachers CDP on their classroom practices.
Their findings revealed that CPD programmes were
relevant to teachers‟ classroom management practices,
hence capacity building programmes should be promoted
regularly in basic schools.
With CPD importance to performance of teachers in
educational institutions, there was need to conduct
studies in CPD in the CoE. However, little is known about
CPD in the CoE in Ghana. Therefore, this study wants to
assess what criteria are used in selecting staff for CPD
activities and what are the challenges facing CPD
programs in the CoEs?
The study used an exploratory, descriptive and evaluative case
study approach that combined both qualitative and quantitative
methods (Blaikie and Yin as cited in Agyenim-Boateng, 2008). The
population of the study comprised all tutors and assistant tutors;
committee members responsible for HRMD and their chair persons
as well as vice-principals in the CoEs in the Eastern-Greater-Accra
(EAGA) sector. Traditionally, the CoEs had been grouped into
seven zones. The EAGA sector of that stratification comprised
seven colleges representing 17.39% of the entire CoEs. To ensure
representativeness, all the eight colleges found in the EAGA sector
were used for the study. There were 371 respondents composed of
355 tutors for which 63 equally serve as HRMD committee
members and chairpersons, 8 vice-principals and 8 quality
assurance officers.
The tutors as well as the HRMD committee members did not
require any sampling technique but the census approach was used
in selecting all of them whereas the purposive non-probability
sampling technique was used in selecting the HRMD chairpersons‟,
vice-principals and the quality assurance officers. There was
however, a return rate of 364 representing 98.1% of the total
respondents used for the study. Two instruments (questionnaire,
interview schedule) were used in the data collection. The
questionnaire was used for all the teaching staff as well as the
quality assurance officers. The questionnaires were personally
distributed in all the 7 colleges with six trained tutors who served as
ambassadors in the various colleges. A structured interview
schedule was used for the HRMD committee chairpersons to elicit
information basically on varying issues that bother on the study that
actually emanated from the questionnaire that needed further
Entsie et al. 115
Table 1. Criteria used by the Colleges of Education in the selection of staff for CPD programs.
Std. deviation
National / Departmental Policy
Career progression
Personal development plan
Discussion with colleagues
Client‟s response and feedback
Formal needs assessment
Knowledge/skill gap
Reflection on performance
Performance review
Source: Field Data (2017).
clarifications as well as documentary evidence of CPD situation in
their respective colleges. The interview was personally conducted
by the researcher. The study used the mean, standard deviations
as well as percentages in analyzing both research questions.
Criteria used by CoEs in selecting staff for training
Results on criteria considered by CoEs in CPD
development programmes were assessed and the results
shown in Table 1.
In sharp contrast to what literature stipulates in relation
to the selection of staff for CPD activities, the results from
Table 1 deviates from the established norms and
standards. For instance, it could be seen clearly from the
mean as arranged in a hierarchical order in Table 1 that
the criterion that had mostly informed and influenced
CPD activities in the colleges was national/organizational
policy. The Colleges of Education Act, 2012 (Act 847)
stipulates through the statutes that the minimum
qualification requirement for teaching was a master‟s
degree. It was therefore incumbent on teaching staff to
up-grade their respective qualifications to meet the new
organizational requirement. In as much as this was a
national policy and an organizational requirement, it
should have been executed taking into cognizance the
factors that necessitated the change in policy. Thus, this
policy was executed blindly without any form of formal
assessment by management to ascertain how employees
were progressing and the sort of improvements
necessary to build on their strength and enable them to
perform more effectively. This contradicts what literature
says that training needs must precede any form of
training and development program (Noe, 1999 as cited in
Owusu, 2011).
This revelation corroborates literature that the
performance appraisal system of the Ghanaian public
sector universities did not affect the HRD programmes of
the university as they were not fully integrated into the
HRD programmes of the university (Agyenim-Boateng,
2008). Compounding the problem of lack of training
needs analysis through either a formal or informal
appraisal system was the non-existence of an HRMD unit
which should have in it a quality assurance component.
The study revealed that all the eight colleges used for the
study had constituted a Staff Development Committee
which was a statutory requirement but only existed in
name as it was not functioning. Likewise, quality
assurance was left to the whims and caprices of just one
individual who virtually had no role to play in staff CPD.
Table 1 further shows that respondents considered
„career progression‟, „personal development plan‟ and
„interest‟ as the most prominent media through which
they were able to determine whether or not CPD was
necessary. Owusu (2011) stipulates that career
progression‟, „personal development plan‟ and „interest‟
cannot override indicators like client‟s responses and
feedback‟ and „knowledge/skill gap‟ which look at training
needs of the organization, training needs of the trainee
involved as well as career progression. Performance
appraisal of teachers in the CoEs should encapsulate
responses and feedback from trainee teachers on
mentee programs. This is to help improve individual
employees‟ performance in the organization in an attempt
to improve the overall organizational performance and
The on-going analysis from Table 1 seemed to stipulate
that the CoEs did not really have any stipulated criteria
through which they were able to identify their training
needs for CPD programmes. The situation gives rise to
the use of discretionary measures from teachers
accessing the program and the danger here is that
116 Int. J. Educ. Admin. Pol. Stud.
Table 2. Summary statistics of challenges by respondents.
How to create a system of a more valid, reliable and operationally viable measures to evaluate CPD programmes.
How to make learning a fundamental value of the institution.
Absence of transfer of learning.
Lack of major resources and adequate time to CPD
How to gain the willing cooperation and support of other line managers.
How to link the organisational, operational and individual training needs.
Lack of a clear written policy on Training and Development
Lack of a systematic and comprehensive training needs analysis.
Weak interaction between the institution seeking the training and the institution providing the training
Lack of flexible learning provision
Inadequate staffing and high turnover
Source: Field Data (2017).
training programs may not necessarily meet the
organizational needs. Thus, most CPD programs had
unfolded in the CoEs without regard to pertinent
indicators that will yield the required outcome and
expectations. This finding confirms the NAB analysis as
cited in Newman (2013) that only 0.01% of the teachers
with Masters Degrees in CoEs had qualifications in the
relevant subject area. This further corroborates a study
by Agnaia as cited in Sharon (2017) that administrative
functions were practiced without regard to acceptable
standards and established procedures.
Challenges facing CPD practices
Like every other human activities, there is no doubt that
the practice of CPD in the CoEs in Ghana were
associated with some challenges. The study basically
explored how the respondents perceived challenges
faced by the Colleges of Education Service in Ghana.
Table 2 shows a summary statistic of the responses from
the study.
Table 2 shows statistically significant differences were
reported on three critical issues: how to make learning a
fundamental value of the institutions; absence of transfer
of learning from the training to the workplace; and how to
gain the support and willing cooperation of other line
Absence of transfer of learning from the training to the
workplace was a major challenge facing CPD in the CoEs
(M = 3.69, SD = 0.53). Underpinning this challenge is the
issue of the unavailability of facilities and other teaching
and learning aids that would ensure effective transfer of
learning from the training field to the workplace (Owusu,
2011). Adequate equipment and infrastructure are
necessary for the provision of quality tertiary education.
Without doubt, infrastructure of CoEs needs improvement
if the colleges are to live up to their designation as tertiary
education institutions. The National Accreditation Board
(NAB) as cited in Newman (2013) reported that
laboratory/workshop equipment in the colleges were
obsolete, inadequate and poorly maintained. The board
again indicated that office accommodation for tutors was
largely non-existent in the colleges.
The findings of the NAB were affirmed by the NCTE as
cited in Newman (2013) which stated that “furnishing in
the laboratories is very poor and equipment is not only
scanty and paltry but out of date”. Even though some
efforts have been made to improve infrastructure and
equipment in the colleges, not much has changed since
the colleges were elevated to tertiary status. It is more
frustrating when one cannot practice and deliver what
has been learnt due to lack of facilities or infrastructures.
The NAB findings corroborate the work of Tannenbaum
(1997) who found that the work environment whether
physical, social, or psychological conditions that
individuals experience can either encourage or
discourage the acquisition and transfer of new skills and
ideas. It follows that the focus of every corporate HRD
policies and practices should be to create and foster a
climate that promotes the successful acquisition and
transfer of new skills and ideas. This is the only way that
institutions‟ HRD programmes would achieve its intended
In furtherance to the absence of transfer of learning
from the training to the workplace, the study revealed that
the lack of career counseling center was a major
contributing factor. The study suggests that there was a
cumulative frequency of 86.2% of the respondents who
had never used the career counselling center. Quite a
significant percentage of this category of staff was even
ignorant of the fact that such a facility even exists. An
interview conducted at the Guidance and Counselling
(G&C) units revealed the same responses that indicate
that there was no career counselling component for staff.
In as much as all the seven colleges used for the study
had G&C units, the counselling centers offered services
for the entire CoEs community. Rarely would you find
tutors patronising such services because there were
virtually no programmes that would attract them. All
programmes associated with T&D were under the
jurisdiction of the T&D unit that was equally non-existent.
An interview with some committee heads responsible for
staff T&D recorded no career counselling facility exists for
staff that embarks on T&D as insinuated by the
counselling unit. This explained why the majority said no
such facility exists. It was also evident from the interview
with the HRMD committee chairpersons that the few
respondents who asserted they occasionally patronised
the services of the center, did that on their own but not
because there exists a facility that was purposely meant
to counsel staff members on such issues as further
studies. The implication was that most T&D programmes
in the CoEs over the years evolved without any form of
career counselling.
The indispensability of G&C in every CPD programme
cannot be overemphasized and interviewees from all the
CoEs used for the study admitted that career counselling
for academic staff in the CoE should be a major
component of their services. G&C invariably facilitates
and helps the process of choosing the right candidate for
specific T&D programmes and minimises the occurrence
of participants abandoning programmes midstream or
causing undue delay in the completion rate that adversely
causes financial loss to the respective institutions. The
repercussion of the absence of a career counselling
facility could be very disastrous to the achievement of the
overall organisational objective. For as Hamblin cited in
Yadapadithaya and Stewart (2003) pointed out: trainees
can react favourably to a course; they can enjoy it but
learn nothing. They can also learn something, but cannot,
or will not, or are not allowed to, apply it. They apply it,
but it does no good within their own area of competence.
It does some good in their function, but does not further
the objectives of the organisation (p. 118).
It must be noted here that Hamblin‟s observation
indicates that compromising standards and not choosing
the right candidate for T&D programme could virtually
result in an absence of transfer of learning from the
training to the workplace or virtually a total waste.
Table 2 equally reveals that making learning a
fundamental value in the CoEs was a major challenge
confronting CPD. These were attributed to factors that
include lack of commitment from management that may
result in institutional bottlenecks in policies, inadequate
resources and funds as well as the selection process
being discriminatory to others. Owusu (2011) maintains
that this could also be laziness or unwillingness on the
part of staff due to lack of incentives and other
motivational factors. His study indicated that there was no
policy provision regarding CPD and any form of reward
system. For example, in a response to a question trying
to understand why college tutors who are supposed to
teach and conduct research as well have not been able
to make learning a fundamental value in the institution,
Entsie et al. 117
the interviewees were unanimous that there were no
motivation and available incentives as the following
responses indicate “There are basically two types of CPD
programmmes available to tutors in the colleges of
education: on-the-job training and off-the-job training. The
most common one was the off-the-job type which a
number of staff adopted due to the new national policy of
master’s degree as the minimum qualification required for
teaching in the CoEs. Most teachers struggled to bear all
the cost involved in their training without any refund upon
completion as promised by management. The sad aspect
is that, all these sacrifices did not did not influence
decisions on promotion and remunerations in any form. A
good number of teachers who underwent such CPD
programmes retired with virtually no increase and
improvement in salary prior to the tertiary status of the
CoEs. How can teachers be motivated when all they get
are papers in the name of certificates without any
corresponding benefit in their personal development?
Ironically, our counterparts in other analogous institutions
with virtually the same conditions of service have in place
juicy packages associated with some of these CPD
programmes. Even with the on-the-job training sessions
like T-Tel, they will not even serve drinking water not to
talk of an allowance. All these are not motivating and
subsequently making learning a fundamental value in the
CoEs practically impossible and a difficult end to achieve.
For example, Section (4)(d) of the CoEs Act makes it
mandatory that basic research and action research form
an integral part of teacher education, the paucity of
research capacity in our colleges as result of our
background as a non-tertiary institution few years back
cannot be glossed over. This provision notwithstanding,
the culture of research and publication is nearly non-
existent in CoEs even though tutors are not oblivious to
the benefits that research accrues to productivity. The
reason is simple; research and publication come with
huge cost for which the unimproved salary of the college
tutor cannot meet. Remember we cannot use all our
money on research and publications which comes with
no corresponding benefits aside the knowledge to the
detriment of our family obligations. In order to ingrain
research culture in the CoEs which hitherto was not an
institutional requirement, management through other
stakeholders must be committed and make conscious
efforts of securing allowances and funds for the academic
staff to promote research and publication as the culture
has been in other analogous institutions like the
universities and polytechnics”.
The interviewees were unanimous that the challenge of
not making learning a fundamental value in the colleges
could also be attributed to the difficulty in accessing study
leave due to the state of governance structure in the
colleges now. Unlike other autonomous institutions like
the universities and polytechnics, almost every decision
is subject to the approval of the Minister of Education (Act
847, Section 19). Thus, tracing the historical antecedent
118 Int. J. Educ. Admin. Pol. Stud.
of the autonomy and governance structure of the CoEs, it
could be deduced that the elevation of TTIs to CoEs
resulted in the placement of the colleges under the
NCTE. However, there were conflicting roles between the
NCTE and the GES with respect to the governance
structure in the CoEs. For instance, while the NCTE was
responsible for coordinating the budgets of the CoEs; the
GES still supervised the pay-roll of the CoEs. His
situation adversely affected major decisions in the CoEs
including CPD programmes. It must however be noted
that, this conflicting role have been resolved to a large
extent with some few outstanding issues like autonomy
and academic freedom of the CoEs to be addressed.
There are institutional bottlenecks in policies and
subsequently one wonders how even with the existence
of Governing Councils function effectively since most
decisions are being dictated by government as well as
the University of Cape Coast.
Another challenge that has bedeviled CPD in the CoEs
was how to gain the support and willing cooperation of
other line managers (M= 3.62, SD = 0.49). Lack of
commitment by government and management of the
CoEs to HRD programmes has resulted in an ill-equipped
HRD unit if even there exist one. This situation has
invariably led to the non-existence of a clear written HRD
policy which actually has given room to the phenomenon
of discretion on the part of authorities. Indeed, there is no
direction as to what, how, and when? CPD activities must
be organized (Owusu, 2011).
As a rippling effect, authorities were in a state of dilemma
as to whether to be committed to cultural expectations or
management governed by organisational ethics. Thus, for
the purpose of maintaining good relations with
colleagues, relatives and other family ties, it becomes
very difficult to get the support and collaboration of all
stakeholders in ensuring that stipulated management
principles were strictly adhered to and respected by all
without compromises. This finding validates Agnaiaas
cited in Owusu (2011) observation that administrative
functions were practiced without regard to acceptable
standards and decisions related to management were
mostly dependent on personal relations, family ties,
tribalism among others rather than established
There is also the issue of „lack of a systematic and
comprehensive training needs analysis that results in
weak interaction between the institution seeking the
training and the institution providing the training’ (M =
3.55, SD = 0.46). Lack of a well-established and
resourced HRD unit had also contributed to this
challenge. 85% of the respondents agreed that there was
no training needs analysis conducted before any CPD
programme. In most cases the individual teachers opt for
programmes based on their own interest and career
progression which may not be consistent with the
organizational goals and vision. This is in sharp contrast
with the findings of Owusu (2011) which equally supports
the work of Noe as cited in Owusu (2011) who
determined that a systematic and comprehensive training
needs analysis is a pre-requisite to any successful CPD
programme and that it is the single medium through
which human resource needs are articulated. As a matter
of fact, they put it that training needs analysis is the
starting point of any CPD programme.
The situation makes it difficult and practically
impossible for the CoEs seeking the training to liaison
with the institution providing the training to design
programmes tailored to solve practical classroom
challenges that will enhance performance. It was
therefore of no surprise when data from the NAB indicate
that most teachers with advanced degrees that were all
obtained whiles on-the-job had no bearing and relation on
what they were teaching. Thus, the data showed that only
0.01% of teachers with advanced degrees in the CoEs
have qualifications in the relevant teaching areas (NAB
as cited in Newman, 2013).
Another major challenge which emanated from the
study as shown in Table 2 was „how to create a system of
a more valid, reliable and operationally viable measures
to evaluate CPD programmes (M = 3.27, SD = 0.59).
The study revealed that a cumulative frequency of 83.4%
of respondents intimated that no form of evaluation was
done about CPD programmes whether before, during or
after to ensure their usefulness and appropriateness in
order to inform future and subsequent programmes. Only
a minority of 16.5% alluded to the fact that some form of
evaluation was conducted occasionally and that was after
the programme. This is in contrast with a study by Al-
Athari and Zairi (2002) which revealed that evaluation of
training interventions was done occasionally.
Many articles have been written about the importance
of conducting evaluations, but more organisations pay lip
service to evaluations than actually conducting them as
indicated in the case of the CoEs. Pertinent questions
should be asked to ascertain the desirability and
suitability of CPD programmes. These questions may
include whether the training programme enabled the
learner to develop adequate knowledge, skills and
attitudes in order to close the gap between „what is‟ and
„what should be‟? It therefore became prudent that the
study verifies and determines why the colleges are not
frequently evaluating their training programmes as done
in other corporate organisations. The study therefore
revealed that evaluation was a cumbersome process that
required a lot of procedures, time, resources and more
importantly expertise. In summary, it was identified that
about 90% of the CoEs that were used for the study
lacked the requisite human and material resources for an
effective evaluation of CPD programmes.
Another all-important challenge that CPD faces in the
CoEs as indicated in Table 2 was „lack of flexible learning
provision (M = 3.49, SD = 0.53)‟. Respondents were
unanimous in their response that most CPD programmes
both on-the-job and off-the-job programmes were not
enjoyable for lack of flexibility. That is to say, CPD is
carried out by adults; hence, all principles that apply to
adult learning must be given critical attention to as well.
Accordingly, Whitaker as cited in Sharon (2017) mentions
as a principle underlying CPD that career development
should be owned and managed by the learner. Contrary
to this principle as expounded by Sharon (2017), CPD
programmes undertaken by tutors from the CoEs were
largely owned by the providing institutions and they
dictate the pace and the entire modus operandi without
any recourse to the participant‟s status even as an adult.
Amongst the numerous principles that must inform
adult learning include the following: CPD must ensure
active engagement of all learners which stems from the
fact that adults learn best when actively engaged in the
learning process; learning must be relevant to their work
or some other aspect of their lives, CPD must seek to
solve practical problems and not more of theoretical,
CPD organisers and facilitators must listen to and
respond to learners‟ needs even while the activity is
underway. Efforts must be made in noting their concerns
while in their presence (Badu-Nyarko, 2015).
(1) Colleges of Education did not maximise the full
potential of benefits that accrue from CPD programmes
due to the absence of collaboration between the CoEs
and the institutions providing the training.
(2) CPD programs in the CoEs were mostly dominated
and influenced by discretionary measures from both
authorities and beneficiaries due to the lack of a clear
written HRD policy. Indeed, there is no direction as to
what, how, and when? CPD activities must be organized.
(3) The culture of learning and for that matter making
learning a fundamental value in the CoEs was absent
due to a number of institutional bottlenecks in policies as
well as unwillingness on the part of staff due to lack of
incentives and other motivational factors.
(4) There is no effective evaluation of CPD programmes
due to lack of a valid, reliable and operationally viable
measures to evaluate CPD programmes.
To improve, refine and equally ensure CPD programmes
are maximally effective, this article prescribes some
strategies that could be adopted by the CoEs in
addressing some identified challenges that militate
against successful CPD policy implementation practices.
(1) To ensure active modes of learning, CPD
programmes must be linked with learning needs analysis
and integration of knowledge with everyday practice.
(2) CoEs must take into consideration that their
institutions commitment to CPD should be demonstrated
Entsie et al. 119
not only in quantitative terms, but also more importantly
in its quality. In this context, the study recommends that,
Tannenbaum (1997) assertion should serve as a
blueprint in the evolution of institutions CPD programmes
and human resource development in general. Tannenbaum
(1997) states that: “Rather than the amount of training, it
is the quality and appropriateness of the training, the
supportiveness of the work environment, and the use of
appropriate training policies and practices that determine
how well training contributes to continuous learning (p.
(3) In order to streamline the selection process and
ensure a better succession plan for CoEs, selection
criteria must be tied strictly to assessment needs as well
as organisational principles and standards.
(4) CoEs must ensure that pragmatic measures are taken
for the provision of modern equipments, tools and other
requisite facilities necessary for the technological
advancement that comes with CPD. This invariably would
facilitate proper transfer of learning.
(5) Workers must endeavor to build a CPD portfolio. This
can be paper-based, electronic or online and it would be
helpful for it to be based on a common template and
include annual progress summaries.
The authors have no conflict of interests.
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