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Improving Teaching and Learning of Clothing and Textiles Education With Use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in Ebonyi State University

CHAPTER ONE
INTRODUCTION
Background of the Study
Cloth is a flexible woven material consisting of a network of natural or artificial fibers often referred to as thread or yarn (Mariam, 2012). Clothing is fiber and textiles material worn on the body. The wearing of clothing is mostly restricted to human beings and is a feature of nearly all human societies (Kittler, Kayser and King, 2003). The amount and type of clothing worn depends on physical, social and geographic considerations. Some clothing types can be gender specific while some types are unisex. Clothing types according to Anyakaoha and Eluwa, (2008) is any article placed on the body in order to protect, beautify or adorn it. It’s also used to show people’s status and the roles they play in the society. Clothing includes dresses, shoes, Jewelry, hair – dos, make up among others. One may say that clothing’s are derived from textiles.
Textiles according to Merriam (2012) is any material made of interlacing fibers. Textiles are formed by weaving, knitting, crocheting, knotting or pressing fibers together (felt) Merriam, (2012). The word “textile” is from the Latin word “textile”, meaning “woven” and textiles is texere, or to weave. A textile or cloth is a flexible woven material consisting of a network of natural or artificial fibers often referred to as thread or yarn (Merriam, 2012).
Clothing and textiles is therefore subset in the teaching and learning of Home Economics. The study of clothing and textiles is divided into six central themes including fabrics, garment construction, clothing maintenance, consumer education, decorative process and wardrobe planning (Arubayi, 2011). Many lecturers and students perceive clothing and textiles as a very difficult aspect of Home economics. Hence, the need to inculcate information and communication technology to enhance effectiveness and efficiency in the teaching and learning of clothing and textiles in Ebonyi State University is necessary.
Teaching according to Rajani (2011) is a form of interpersonal influence aimed at changing the behaviour potential of another person. The shortcoming of this definition is that it makes everybody a teacher in the sense that anybody can transmit or convey information, ideas, value and knowledge. Teaching is a complex, multifaceted activity, often requiring an instructor to juggle multiple tasks and goals simultaneously and flexibly (Eberly centre, 2012). Therefore the term teaching refers to the act of transferring information, skills, ideas, and knowledge to the learner in the classroom. It is a way of causing the learner to learn and acquire the desired knowledge, skills, attitudes and also acceptable ways of living in a society. Hence teaching and learning of clothing and textiles includes adequate planning of knowledge and skills to impact on the students at a particular time.
Learning means different things to different people. Learning is interaction and change in behavior. According to Mayer (2006) learning is the act of acquiring new, or modifying and reinforcing, existing knowledge, behaviour, skills, values or preferences and may involve synthesizing different type of information. Learning may occur as part of education, personal development, schooling, or training. It may be goal-oriented and may be aided by motivation. The study of how learning occurs is part of neuropsychology, educational psychology, learning theory, and pedagogy. Mediowiki (2009) opined that learning of clothing and textiles can be achieved by the use of information and communication technology (ICT).
Information and communication technology encompasses a diverse set of technological tools to identify, collect, organize, create and disseminate data and information. The information and communication technology encompasses a wide range of technologies including telecommunication technologies such as telephone, cable, satellite, television, and radio, computer-mediated conferencing and video. Conferencing, as well as digital technologies, such as computers, information networks (internet, worldwide web and intranet) and soft ware application (Kumar, 2011). Information and communication has altered the ways in which the academics activities –teaching, learning, research, and extension activities are carried out at higher educational level. Information and communication technology has enabled people to overcome the barriers of time and space and reduced the time –lag between the generation of information and its consumption by the end user.
Information and communication technology (ICT) or information technology (IT) is an automation of process, control and information production using computers, telecommunication, internet, and software equipment (Ichalita, 2000). Information and communication technology is a term that generally covers the harnessing of electronic technology for the information needs at all levels. According to Okeke and Ukonze (2005), information and communication technology is generally regarded as the convergence of several telecommunications and media use to store, gathers and process, analyze, retrieve and disseminate information. In line with this, Adeyemo (2010) opined that information and communication technology is concerned with the use of technology involving computer software which helps to cover, store, protects, process, transmit and retrieve information. The use of information and communication technology in teaching and learning of clothing and textiles is relevant and functional way of providing education to learners that will assist in imbibing in their required capacity for the academic activities and skill acquisition.
It has been found that information and communication technology can promote students in intellectual qualities through higher order. Thinking, problem solving, improved communication skills and deep understanding of the learning tools as well as the concept to be taught (Sutton, 2006). Information and communication technology can promote a supportive, interactive technology and learning environment, create broader learning community and provide learning tools for students including those who need special skills (Trinidad, MaCNish, Aldridge, Fraser, 2001). According to world Bank report on information and communication technology use (2006) information and communication technology in education initiatives are mostly likely to successful contribute to the millennium development goals (MDGS) of increasing all through distance learning enabling a knowledge network for students, meeting teachers training targets, increasing the availability of quantity materials and enhancing the quality of administrative activities for self-reliance.
The application of information and communication technology in pattern drafting in clothing, anthropometric measurement, and cutting of fabrics has advanced tremendously and improved customization of clothing for mass production, time saving and cost in other parts of the world. Traditionally, body sizes were collected by using contact instrument such as measuring tapes, and calipers. However, the possible intra – and inter- observer errors may affect the precision of measurement procedure tends to be tedious and requires considerable human efforts. With the advancement of instrumentation, the 3-Dimension whole body scanner made it possible to measure human body efficiently with non-contact methods. By scanning through the whole body of human beings, 3-D point clouds on the surface can be captured to enable body dimension collection (Lu and Hwang 2011). The use of information and communication technology involves the application of computer software and hardware such as 3D scanner, 2D photographs. Such software involves the use of computer hardware to digitally input programs that design and draft patterns, collect measurement. Lu and Wang maintained that by taking 2D photograph and analyzing the silhouette of human body, some linear body dimensions can be collected. In addition, mathematical models can be developed to approximate circumference data and in this case, the image quality has to be maximized to increase the precision of measurement. In other words, the use of ICT in teaching and learning of clothing and textiles is most needed now particularly in the construction of clothing patterns.
Clothing patterns are generally generated by skilled pattern makers according to what he/she measured and observed. This task requires considerable expertise and experience and thus induces great labour cost but with the development of computer aided design (CAD) and computer aided manufacture (CAM) technologies, the computer software can make it more efficient to generate clothing patterns at low cost (Lu and Wang, 2011). Based on the mathematical expressions for required measures, the computerized construction of clothing patterns can be realized (Kang and Kim, 2000).
Anthropometric measurement using information and communication technology has advanced tremendously using 3-D whole body scanner and 2D photograph where male and female measurements for pattern drafting can be currently obtained in seconds using advanced instruments (Lu and Wang 2011). This is also the case in cutting and sewing. Advanced electronics machine using information and communication technology is currently applied to sew clothing. The significance of information and communication technology in clothing and textiles education is imperative and cannot be left out (Lu and Wang 2011).

Statement of the problem
The poor knowledge of information and communication technology amongst students and lecturers in Home economics department in Ebonyi state university, is fundamentally due to lack of modern infrastructure like projectors, laptops, computers, 3D whole body scanners, 2D photographs, digital tapes measurement and many others modern tools required for teaching and learning of clothing and textiles. Consequently, the quality of graduate in Home economics departments in Ebonyi state university, and Nigerian universities in general are on increase.
The previous method of teaching and learning of clothing and textiles is mainly theoretical and the practical is based on traditional method of taking body measurement with tapes and calipers, yard stick and so on generating patterns based on the measurement collected are still in use. This method is time consuming, wastes of fabrics and tedious to both the lecturers and the students. Hence, the need to strategize on method of improving the teaching and learning of clothing and textiles education using information and communication technology in the department of Home Economics Ebonyi State University becomes imperative.
Thus, the study of clothing and textiles has advanced globally, even beyond the developing economy level and so students and lecturers in department have follow the trend. Without tapping in an information and communication technology, advancement in clothing and textiles education becomes far-fetched knowledge and mere dream. Many students in Ebonyi state university have little or no knowledge of information and communication technology as it concern clothing and textiles and this stagnate the collection of ideas, current technologies, recent innovative and the future of clothing and textiles education.
Purpose of the Study
The main purpose of this study is to develop frame work for improving teaching and learning of clothing and textiles education with the use of information and communication technology in the department of Home Economics in Ebonyi state University, Abakaliki. Specifically, the study will,
1. Examine analogue methods of pattern drafting in Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki.
2. Examine digital methods of pattern drafting using information and communication technology.
3. Explore ways body measurement are be practiced in Ebonyi state university.
4. Explore digital ways of body measurement using information and communication technology.
5. Examine ways of cutting fabrics in Ebonyi state university, Abakaliki.
6. Explore ways of cutting fabrics using information and communication technology.
Significance of the Study
The importance of the result of this study cannot be over emphasized. The use of information and communication technology in teaching and learning of clothing and textiles will be of benefit to the students, technologists and lecturers in clothing and textiles. The students of Ebonyi State University, they will be exposed to the benefits of imbibing and utilizing information and communication technology in the course of their academic pursuit. It will also add value in teaching and learning, by enhancing the effectiveness of learning or by adding a dimension to learning that was not previously available. Information and communication technology (ICT) may also be a significant motivational factor in students’ learning, and can support student’s engagement with collaborative learning. ICT usage will enable students to develop initiative and independent learning skills, able to use ICT confidently, creatively and productively, able to communicate effectively, able to work collaboratively and critically evaluate, manage and use information
The lecturers will benefit by improving on their utilization of information and communication technology. The use of ICT like projectors, 3D whole body scanners, 2-D photograph, and leaser-cutting machine will save lecturers from shouting to raise their voice for students to hear them which make their job (teaching) very tedious and tiresome. Technologists, will benefit through insight in current technologies tools that should be apply in clothing and textiles thereby improving an already made technologies available. This work is highly significant because no peculiar available work has been done on the application of information and communication technology in clothing and textiles education. Thus, this work will lay the foundation for veritable tools to be applied in order to improve the teaching and learning of clothing and textiles in the department of Home Economics in Ebonyi state university, Abakaliki. Hence the significance of this work is versatile as it would advance and ease the teaching and learning of clothing and textiles in Home Economics in Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki and other universities.
Scope of the Study
This study is on improving teaching and learning of clothing and textiles using information and communication technology in Home Economics department in Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki. It focuses on the analogue methods of pattern drafting, the digital methods of pattern drafting using information and communication technology, ways of body measurement been practiced in Ebonyi State University, possible digital ways of body measurement using information and communication technology, ways fabrics are been cut in Ebonyi State University, and ways of cutting fabrics using information and communication technology. The students, technologists, and lecturers in Home Economics department in Ebonyi State University will be the respondent.
Research Questions
1. What are the analogue methods of pattern drafting?
2. What are the digital methods of pattern drafting using information and communication technology?
3. What are the ways body measurement is been practiced in Ebonyi State University?
4. What are the digital ways of body measurement using information and communication technology?
5. What are the ways fabrics are been cut in Ebonyi State University?
What are the digital ways of cutting fabrics using information and communication technology?

One Response

  1. Stephen Enesi Jeremiah August 9, 2015

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