The Problems and Prospects of Teaching Technical Education in Secondary Schools
PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The objective of study is to investigate the the problems and prospects of teaching technical education in secondary schools it is also to investigate the following specific objectives;
- To know if non-availability of finance is affecting students enrolment in technical education .
- To know if technical education is really helping individual to be self-reliance.
- To know if inadequate infrastructural facilities is affecting the development of technical education.
- To know the problems faced by teachers in teaching technical education to secondary school students.
REVIEW OF LITERATURE
Our focus in this chapter is to critically examine relevant literatures that would assist in explaining the research problem and furthermore recognize the efforts of scholars who had previously contributed immensely to similar research. The chapter intends to deepen the understanding of the study and close the perceived gaps.
Precisely, the chapter will be considered in three sub-headings:
- Conceptual Framework
- Theoretical Framework
Technical and vocational education is used as a comprehensive term in the educational process involving, in addition to general education, the study of technologies and related sciences and acquisition of practical skills, attitudes, understanding and knowledge relating to occupations in various sectors of economic and social life (FGN, 2004). Okoro (1993) quoted in Agapu and Andural (2007) and Momoh (2012) defines vocational education as a form of education whose primary purpose is to prepare persons for employment in recognized occupation. In the same vein he defines technical education as a post secondary vocational training programme which the major purpose is the production of technicians. The terms technical education and vocational education are often used interchangeably but, they are separate and distinct terms. For the purpose of this paper there is the need to do some clarifications. Vocational education refers to skill based programmes which are designed for skill acquisition at lower level of education. Vocational education programmes focus on specific vocations for entry into defined workplace. Technical education, in the other hand is not designed for any particular vocation but provides general technical knowledge. This type of education prepares people for entry into recognized occupation at a higher level but usually lower than the first degree. In fact technical and vocational education is usually a merger of technical education and vocational education i.e the inclusion of basic technical and scientific knowledge with the skill based vocational programme. According to Uwaifo (2009), technical education is the training of technically oriented personnel who are to be the initiators, facilitators and implementers of technologically development of a nation. In his own opinion, this training of its citizens on the need to be technologically literate would eventually lead to self reliance and sustainability. He observed that technical education more than any other profession has direct impact on the development of the country. Again, technical education contributes so much ranging from electrical and electronics technology, metal work technology, mechanical/automobile technology, building technology, woodwork technology etc, technical education is practical oriented education which makes it unique in its content and approach thereby demanding special attention. Unfortunately, despite all the glaring contributions of technical and vocational education in our nation, Nigeria is yet to accord this type of education the attention it deserves. This is one of the major reasons for the rising unemployment, poverty and unabated crimes in the society today. This paper is an attempt to explore some issues, challenges and the way forward for vocational and technical education in Nigeria.
ISSUES OF TECHNICAL EDUCATION
Vocational/technical education is designed to offer people the opportunity of improving themselves in their general proficiency, especially in relation to their present or future occupation. Nuru (2007) opined that changes in any nation’s economy is required to prepare young people for the jobs of the future of which technical and vocational education have crucial roles to play. May (2007) observed that technical and vocational education are very much still neglected in the aspect of adequate funding, personnel, modern facilities, staff motivation which consequently are robbing the country of the economic development to be contributed by graduates of technical/vocational education. Asogwa and Diogu (2007) maintained that there is an urgent need for the Nigeria’s attention to be redirected towards self reliant and sustainable means of livelihood which technical education provides. Most analysts agree that employers of labour today demand more skills than they did in the past (Yang, 2008). Oranu (2010) also observed that there are many factors that have contributed to the ever rising demand for skills in the labour market which include the following; technological and organizational change, trade, deregulation of key industries and the decline of unions. The too much emphasis on University education in Nigeria has always reduced the economic opportunities of those who are more work oriented than academics (Ojimba, 2012). Not everybody needs a University education. Who that would employ them if everybody becomes a University graduate? Many of the so – called “expatriate engineers” receiving huge sum of money in dollars for road construction in Nigeria are graduates of vocational colleges but in Nigeria, the issue of technical and vocational education is not taking seriously. The nation’s poverty level has increased to about 70% that many Nigerians now live on less than one dollar a day. As earlier on stated, higher institutions in Nigeria lack the tools and machines to train students to acquire the skills needed by employers of labour. The challenges of vocational and technical education are quite enormous.
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 constitute of individuals or elements that are homogeneous in description.
This study was carried out to examine the problems and prospects of teaching technical education in secondary schools in Benin, Edo state. Teachers from 4 selected secondary schools in Benin, Edo State form 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
In this study, our focus was to examine the problems and prospects of teaching technical education in secondary schools using selected schools in Benin as a case study. The study specifically was aimed at highlighting if non-availability of finance is affecting students enrolment in technical education. if technical education is really helping individual to be self-reliance. if inadequate infrastructural facilities is affecting the development of technical education. the problems faced by teachers in teaching technical education to secondary school students.
The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 77responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent are drawn from staff of the selected schools.
Based on the finding of this study, the following conclusions were made:
- non-availability of finance affecting the development of technical education
- technical education really is helping individual to be self-reliance
- inadequate infrastructural facilities are affecting the development of vocational education
- there are problems faced by teachers in teaching technical education to secondary school students
Based on the responses obtained, the researcher proffers the following recommendations:
- That infrastructural facilities should be improved upon in other to make technical education more appealing to both teachers and students
- That technical education teachers should undergo periodic training , in other to meet up with the new standard of teaching the subject
- That government should employ qualified teachers , who can confidently teach technical education.
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