Competence Level Assessment (PTK)

Cuepacs, the umbrella union for civil servants, has been urging the government to abolish the Competence Level Assessment (PTK) for many years (for the latest, see here).

In academia, regardless of whether it is a public or private university, the competence of a lecturer should be evaluated based on his/her teaching performance and research achievements, with the latter getting a larger weight. In Malaysian public universities, PTK is a compulsory requirement for promotion exercises. For instance, PTK 3 is required for promotion to Senior Lecturer, whereas applicant for Associate Professor must have passed PTK 5. I always hold the view that academics should be promoted primarily on the basis of their research achievements. If pure scholarly merit and intellectual excellence are not the basis of promotion, then one would be left with the question of what do professors profess (see the article by Orr, 2000).

I am glad that our Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, in his 2011 Budget speech on 15 October 2010, announced that the PTK for civil servants has been abolished and will be replaced with a more suitable evaluation system by June 2011 (see here). According to a news report, when the Prime Minister highlighted this at the national teachers’ assembly at Stadium Putra, it drew thunderous applause from the audience (see here).