Race and assessment practice in South Africa: understanding black academic experience

Journal Article


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Race Ethnicity and Education

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Taylor & Francis


University of Cape Town

Despite efforts to transform the racialised system of higher education in South Africa inherited from apartheid, there has been little research published that interrogates the relationship between race and the experience of academic staff within the South African higher education environment. Drawing on critical discourse analysis and critical race theory, this article traces the experience of two black male academics in relation to the assessment practices of their colleagues at a historically white university in South Africa. The interviewees, both graduates from the departments in which they teach, reflected on their experience of their departmental assessment practices both as black students and black academics. The analysis concludes that despite their differing perceptions and experiences they both regard the assessment practices of some of their white colleagues as undermining of their black students' efforts to succeed.

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Race Ethnicity and Education on 27 February 2012, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/13613324.2011.645568.