Attitude of Mass Communication Students Towards Journalism as a Career
Objective of the study
Objectives of the study are;
- To find out if the hazard of journalism as a career scare many away from the profession.
- To find out if the fragile nature of women make them drop their profession for less hazardrous jobs after their training.
- To find out possible solutions to the apathy to the journalism profession in Nigeria vis a vis counterparts in other countries.
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
Lee, Kim and Lo (2000) conducted a study on the perception of hospitality and tourism students toward study motivations and preference among Hong Kong students. Their findings indicated that five motivational factors influence the student’s choice of the hospitality and tourism management field. Job opportunity is the major elements with composite mean (5.01), followed by self-actualization with composite mean (4.88), field attractiveness with composite mean (4.54), and ease of study with composite mean (4.36). These findings show that the students have inherent desire to choose their identities in the hospitality and tourism industry and that a favourable job market affected their decision to pursue a hospitality and tourism management university qualification. The study concludes that hospitality and tourism management education providers must take students study motivations into consideration in curriculum development. Similarly, Ashong and Batta (2011) conducted a study on gender representation in communication education and practice in Nigeria. The findings indicated that majority of the students of mass communication in Nigerian universities are females with 60.06% while males constitute only 39.91%. However, males have dominated communication education practice with 78.65%, while females constitute only 21.35% of the academic staff. Also, males have dominated the practice of other various communication professions in the industry; out of the 34,872 mass communication practitioners 67.28% are males, while only 32.77% are females’ communication practitioners in Nigeria. The study concluded that women are the mass majority of the Nigerian university students of mass communication however men have dominated the teaching of mass communication and practicing of other communication professions in Nigeria. A study was conducted by Ali (2010) on the attitudes of female students of mass communication toward journalism as a career in NnamdiAzikwe University Awka. The findings support the positive hypotheses that; female mass communication students have negative attitude towards journalism as a career, there is discrimination against the female journalist, female journalists are shy in carrying out their duties, there are wrong impressions about the female journalists, and female roles as mothers and wives are some of the problems facing journalists. The study concluded that majority of the respondents prefer teaching as the most suitable career for women as it afford them time to attend to family issues and prevent them from discrimination and other difficulties experience by female journalists. Also, Nigerian cultural orientation and religious beliefs are major factors that contributed to the negative attitude of female mass communication students towards journalism. Equally, Chuang, Walker, and Caine-Bish (2009) conducted a study on student’s perceptions of career choices: the impact of academic major. The study was conducted among students of three major academic programmes; hospitality management (HM), human development and family studies (HDFS), and nutrition and dietetics (ND) at a university in northeastern Ohio United States. The findings indicated that a student’s academic major play a significant role in their career choice, as there is significant difference in the career decision making of the respondents from the three academic programmes. The main areas of differences are career decision self-efficacy, career outcome expectation and commitment to career choices. Majority of the students stated that personal interest is the most influential factor in making their career choice. Also, they stated that they relied on faculty staff expertise to guide them to make well informed career choice. The study concluded that faculty members in the university have a vital role to play in the career development of their students
CAREER OPPORTUNITIES IN PRINT JOURNALISM
Print journalism is a profitable business, with great prospects for the future, especially considering the various forms of dissemination of information via electronic communications. Career opportunities abound in print journalism where one can fit in. These opportunities include:
➢ Editing: The importance of editing cannot be over-emphasized because all sorts of work need editing even when their authors personally must have gone through them. According to Idemili (2000) “writers of all sorts need editors even when they have had time to go over their own works.” The job of sub editing is an exciting one because it is the heart beat of the print media. Editing is now a booming business because many people are engaged in writing and most writers pass through professional editors who edit their works and get paid handsomely.
➢ Reporting: The backbone of any publication are the reporters, many are assigned on regular news beats while others are not. No editor can edit a copy without the news stories submitted by the reporter. In this era of technology, newsgathering has been simplified for the reporter. A reporter can make a living through reporting for different print media organizations.
➢ Cartooning: Cartoons are funny drawings or sketches found in newspapers and magazines which depict humorous remarks about news events. Cartoons occupy less space and can hardly be caught in the web of libel. Large newspapers employ their own cartoonists while some are self-employed. Today, cartoonists with computer knowledge have used it to enhance the aesthetics of their jobs. Cartooning offers opportunity for independent practice.
➢ Graphic Communication:There is no doubt that we are living in a world of graphics and a graphic artist who knows his job well will always excel. Graphics is the core of modern printing and it has gone scientific because the designs are done on the computer by the graphic artists who visualize what the design will look like, articulate and improve on them.
In this chapter, we described the research procedure for this study. A research methodology is a research process adopted or employed to systematically and scientifically present the results of a study to the research audience viz. a vis, the study beneficiaries.
Research designs are perceived to be an overall strategy adopted by the researcher whereby different components of the study are integrated in a logical manner to effectively address a research problem. In this study, the researcher employed the survey research design. This is due to the nature of the study whereby the opinion and views of people are sampled. According to Singleton & Straits, (2009), Survey research can use quantitative research strategies (e.g., using questionnaires with numerically rated items), qualitative research strategies (e.g., using open-ended questions), or both strategies (i.e., mixed methods). As it is often used to describe and explore human behaviour, surveys are therefore frequently used in social and psychological research.
POPULATION OF THE STUDY
According to Udoyen (2019), a study population is a group of elements or individuals as the case may be, who share similar characteristics. These similar features can include location, gender, age, sex or specific interest. The emphasis on study population is that it constitutes of individuals or elements that are homogeneous in description.
This study was carried to examine attitude of mass communication students towards journalism as a career. Mass communication students in university of Calabar forms the population of the study.
DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS
This chapter presents the analysis of data derived through the questionnaire and key informant interview administered on the respondents in the study area. The analysis and interpretation were derived from the findings of the study. The data analysis depicts the simple frequency and percentage of the respondents as well as interpretation of the information gathered. A total of eighty (80) questionnaires were administered to respondents of which only seventy-seven (77) were returned and validated. This was due to irregular, incomplete and inappropriate responses to some questionnaire. For this study a total of 77 was validated for the analysis.
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
It is important to ascertain that the objective of this study was to ascertain attitude of mass communication students towards journalism as a career. In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing the challenges of attitude of mass communication students towards journalism as a career
This study was on attitude of mass communication students towards journalism as a career. Three objectives were raised which included; To find out if the hazard of journalism as a career scare many away from the profession, to find out if the fragile nature of women make them drop their profession for less hazardous jobs after their training and to find out possible solutions to the apathy to the journalism profession in Nigeria vis a vis counterparts in other countries. A total of 77 responses were received and validated from the enrolled participants where all respondents were drawn from mass communication students in university of calabar. Hypothesis was tested using Chi-Square statistical tool (SPSS).
Mass Communication graduates would not want to practice journalism on graduation. This means that certain perceived difficulties like discrimination, religious beliefs, cultural beliefs which journalists face makes them not to practice the profession after their course of study. From the analysis gathered in this projects, there is no doubt to believe that Mass Communication Students have Negative Attitude towards Journalism as their Career. Despite the Negative attitude of journalists towards journalism as a career, the researcher noted that in a much as the female journalists have negative attitude towards journalism, they can still do better in the field, if not better than their male counterparts. But this can only happen if they are given the opportunity to practice what they have studied without being discriminated against. Supporting this, Fedler et al (2005) says that “female journalists should be proud of themselves wherever they find themselves as they cannot be defeated by their male counterparts or other females who read other profession”.
Media houses should make it as a point of duty to employ more of the female journalists just like they employ the male journalists most especially in the investigative aspects.
Those media houses that have employed women, should not only employ them as presenters, but also as sign them to the field as reporters so that they will see and feel the fun of journalism. When this is don, their negative attitude will automatically change to positive and this will encourage more female journalists to seek for employment in the media houses as reporters and freelancers.
Men who are opportune to marry female journalists should encourage them to practice their profession as this will broaden their horizon and also help the family to be current on things happening in the world.
Salaries of working journalists should be increased so as to motivate and change the negative attitude of Mass Communication students towards journalism as a career to positively.
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