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PROJECT TOPIC- AVAILABILITY OF ICT FACILITIES AND TEACHERS’ LITERACY LEVEL AND THEIR IMPACT ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN ABAKALIKI LGA OF EBONYI STATE

PROJECT TOPIC- AVAILABILITY OF ICT FACILITIES AND TEACHERS’ LITERACY LEVEL AND THEIR IMPACT ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN ABAKALIKI LGA OF EBONYI STATE

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the Study

Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) have become key tools and had a revolutionary impact on how we see the world and how we live. Today, the place of ICTs in education and the world in general cannot be undermined. Modern day businesses are conducted and facilitated through the use of telephones, fax machines and computer communication networks through the internet. The phenomenon has given birth to the contemporary e-commerce, e-government, e-machine, e-banking and e-education among others.

According to Bamidele (2006), ICT is a revolution that involves the use of computers, internet and other telecommunication technology in every aspect of human endeavour. Ozoji in Jimoh (2007) defined ICT as the handling and processing of information (text, images, graphs, instruction, etc) for use, by means of electronic and communication devices such as computers, cameras, telephone and so on. Similarly, Ofodu (2007) also define ICT as electronic or computerized devices, assisted by human and interactive materials that can be used for a wide range of teaching and learning as well as for personal use.

From these definitions, ICT could be defined as processing and sharing of information using all kinds of technologies for the manipulation and communication of information. Aribasala (2006), posited that ICT is increasingly playing an important role in organizations and in society’s ability to produce, access, adopt and apply information. They are however being heralded as the tools for the post-industrial age and the foundations for a knowledge economy due to their ability to facilitate the transfer and acquisition of knowledge.

Stressing the importance of the use of ICT in schools, Olorunsola (2007), posited that through ICT, some educational needs have been met; it changes the needs of education as well as the potential processes. Looking at the role of education in the Nation building and the population explosion in technical colleges these days, the use of ICT in the teaching and learning process becomes imperative. This is because its adoption by teachers will enhance effective teaching. Issues like good course organization, effective classroom management, self-study collaborative learning, tax oriented activities, and effective communication between the actors of teaching-learning process and research activities will be enhanced by the use of ICT based technology.

Teaching and learning has gone beyond the teacher standing in front of a group of pupils and disseminating information to them without the students’ adequate participation (Ajayi, 2008). The various ICT facilities used in the teaching and learning process in technical colleges according to Babajide and Bolaji (2003), Bryers (2004), Bamidele (2006) and Ofodu (2007) include; radio, television, computers, overhead projectors, optical fibres, fax machines, CD-Rom, internet, electronic notice board, slides, digital multimedia, video/VCD machine and so on.

It appears that some of these facilities are not sufficiently provided for teaching and learning process by some universities colleges. This might account for why teachers are not making use of them in their teaching. According to Ajayi (2008) the use of these facilities involves various methods which include systematized feedback system, computer-based operation/network, video conferencing and audio conferencing; internet/worldwide websites and computer assisted instruction.

It should be stressed that the effective use of the various methods of ICT in teaching and learning depends on the availability of these facilities and teachers competences in using them. There are developments in the Nigerian education sector which indicate some level of ICT application in technical colleges teaching and learning processes. The Federal Government of Nigeria, in the National Policy on Education (Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2004), recognizes the prominent role of ICTs in the modern world, and has integrated ICTs in to education in Nigeria.

To actualize the goal, the National Policy on Education (2004) states that, government will provide basic infrastructure and training at the primary level, at the junior secondary level, computer education has been made a pre-vocational elective and is a vocational elective at the senior secondary level. Even vocational and technical education as a discipline requires adequate instructional facilities such as the ICT so as to make teaching and learning more effective.

Use of ICT will also simplify abstract concepts through relevant examples by using internet facilities. It is evident that we live in a time of rapid technological change which modernized every aspect of our lives; be it social, physical and intellectual. This technological change also affects the way we teach and learn. To improve technical education is essential to the creation of effective human capital in any country (Evoh, 2007).

The need for ICT in technical colleges cannot be overemphasized in this technology-driven age, every one requires ICT competence in order to gain and share information. Organizations are finding it’s very necessary to train and retrain their employees to establish or increase their knowledge of computer and other ICT facilities (Adomi and Anie, 2006; Tyler, 1998). This calls for early acquisition of ICT skills by all categories of higher Institutions.

The ability to use computers effectively has become an essential part of every one’s education. Skills such as book keeping, clerical and administrative work, and science/technological disciplines now constitute a separate sets of computerized practices that form the core IT skills package; spreadsheets, word processors, database and CorelDraw. (Raffel and Whitworth, 2002). The demand for computer/ICT literacy is increasing because employees realize that computer can be a threat to their jobs, and the only way to enhance job security is to become computer literate with the high demand for computer literacy, the teaching and learning of these skills is a concern among professionals (Ochroye, n.d.).

ICT application will prove beneficial in improving educational system and giving students a better education. ICT will technologically advance the academic performances of secondary school students in Abakaliki of Ebonyi State, with the potential to improve educational performance, telecommunication, media communication and skilled ICT professionals who will be well-equipped to solve ICT problems in the state and the country at large.

The previous government and even the present had said it will provide necessary infrastructure and training for the integration of ICTs in all level of the educational system. Okebukola (1997), cited by Aduwa-Ogiegbaen and Myamu, (2005), concludes that computer is not part of classroom technology in more than ninety (90) percent of Nigerian public schools. This implies that the chalkboard and textbook continues to dominate classroom activities in most Nigerian secondary schools.

The Federal Ministry of Education has launched an ICT-driven project known as school net www.snng.org (Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2006; Adomi 2005; Okebukola, 2004), which was intended to equip all schools in Nigeria with computers and communication technologies. In June 2003, at the African submit of the world economic forum held in Durban, South Africa, the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) launched the e-schools initiative, intended to equip all African high schools with ICT equipment including computers, radio and television sets, phones and fax machines, communication equipment, scanners, digital cameras and copiers among other things.

It is meant to connect African students to the internet and to impart ICT skills to young Africans in the primary, secondary and technical colleges, to harness ICT to improve, enrich, and expand education in African countries (Aginam, 2006). Various ICT tools are used in teaching and learning process in technical colleges. For this research, as an example, Computer Aided Instruction (CAI) was used as an example of ICT tools used in teaching. All over the world, education has been recognized as a critical tool for effecting national development.

In fact, education is a catalyst for social, economic and personal changes. One of the changes and innovations which the federal government of Nigeria adopted in her development efforts is the integration of information and communication technology into all levels of the education system. The objectives of the federal government of Nigeria on Information Technology (IT) as highlighted by Yusuf (2005) are: Making Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) mandatory at all levels of education. Developing ICTs curriculum for primary, secondary and tertiary institutions, provision of study grants and scholarship on ICTs, training the trainer scheme for National Youth Service Corps members ICTs capacity development at zonal, state and local levels.

In this era of digitalization the flow of information through the satellite and internet enhances rapid dissemination of knowledge “which has become the most important factor in economic development in the 21st century” (Saint, Hartnett, and Strasser, 2003), it becomes imperative for ICT to be applied to teaching and learning in schools across the globe. ICT has been recognized as effective for use in the education industry as an effective delivery mechanism (Westera and Sloep, 2001).

They maintained that ICTs can provide an efficient delivery mechanism of educational services by supplementing conventional delivery mechanism. The emergence of ICTs has generated lots of changes and innovations in all sectors of the economy across the globe. As a result, of the impact of ICTs, the whole world has been transformed into a global village. According to Johnson (2007), the prevalence and rapid development of ICTs have transformed human society from information technology age into knowledge age.

As noted by Omeniyi, Agu, and Odimegwu (2007), the education industry appears to be the major sector where ICT integration and effective application could extend massively to other areas of life. This assertion presupposes that educational institutions in Nigeria be technology-based. As a result of the use of information and communication technologies, distance education is acceptable world wide as a standard alternative mode of education (Ojokheta and Adepoju, 2007).

Most developed communities have invested largely in centralized media systems that enable information to be broadcast to their schools at one time. Schools in such communities have a common cabled computer and media network. Teachers monitor activities rather than directing, in order to encourage creativity in technology. Though literature is replete on ICT, most of these literatures all cover studies in foreign countries.

In Nigeria and Ebonyi State in particular, there are limited literature on ICT integration in teaching and learning in secondary schools in Abakaliki L.G.A. This study attempts to fill this gap. Technology increases educational capability. The emergence of inexpensive computer technology and mass storage media, including optical video disc, compact disc, has given instructional technologist better tool with which to work. Computer compact disc and flash memory are used to store large amount of information (data), such as encyclopedias or motion pictures.

A teacher, who is interested in a particular topic, can hence project it for display for the students to see and learn in a better way. According to Ajayi (2008), the effective utilization of ICT in teaching and learning depends on the availability of these facilities and teachers competency (literacy) level in using them. Observation has shown that there are no functional ICT facilities in most secondary schools in Ebonyi State and this hampers the teacher ability to use them for teaching and learning.

Also lack of adequate computer literate teachers, irregular power supply and inadequate funding are another set of obstacle militating against effective utilization of ICT facilities in teaching and learning in these secondary schools. Therefore there is need to address such problems by providing adequate ICT facilities and training needs of the teachers to effectively utilize it in teaching and learning process.

PROJECT TOPIC- AVAILABILITY OF ICT FACILITIES AND TEACHERS’ LITERACY LEVEL AND THEIR IMPACT ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN ABAKALIKI LGA OF EBONYI STATE

Statement of the Problem

Secondary school students all over the world are now expected to be proficient in the use of ICT resources either for personal, home or academic use. With the various technological facilities and the internet as the market square, one would expect that ICT resources availability and access should be popular in learning the various subjects in secondary schools. But the reverse is the case; it appears that most of the secondary schools in Nigeria specifically in Abakaliki Region of Ebonyi State do not have the required ICT resources for students’ learning.

Many have ascribed the problem of poor availability of I.C.T facilities and Teacher literacy level to both the Federal and State Governments of the respective States. From the researcher’s personal observation, it appears that most of our secondary schools do not have the required ICT resources for students’ learning. Where they are available, they are usually not adequate for students to get easy access.

The problem of this study is put in a question form whether these ICT facilities in Abakakili Ebonyi State is available for students. It is against this background that the researcher seeks to study the assessment of the availability of I.C.T facilities and teacher literacy level.

Purpose of the Study

The general purpose of this work is to assess the availability of ict facilities and teachers’ literacy level and their impact on the academic performance of secondary school students in abakaliki lga of ebonyi state. But in order to bring to logically meet up with this purpose, the researcher has developed specific objectives to guide the work. Thus, the study has four purposes as follow:

  1. To find out the equipments that could be used in teaching and learning processes.
  2. To determine the ICT availability in secondary schools in Abakaliki.
  3. To determine the benefits of ICT in teaching and learning in Secondary Schools.
  4. To determine teachers’ literacy level in secondary schools in Abakaliki Ebonyi State.

Significance of the Study

This research work could serve as a reminder to the State government of Ebonyi State to give priority attention to ICT integration in education by assisting Secondary Schools in the state in funding for ICT facilities in order to aid academic performances of student.

Wealthy individuals, non-governmental organizations, community based organizations, and other agencies could collaborate with the state government in staff training on ICT to facilitate ICT full integration in teaching and learning. Staff training and development through seminars, conferences and workshops could help improve ICT literacy. Secondary schools should adopt the establishment of solar energy sources to back up the power supply and thus enhance full integration of ICT in teaching and learning.

Administrators of institutions of higher learning should incorporate ICT into their strategic plan to ensure that they link the schools with Local Area Network (LAN). Teachers will now be able to update themselves with ICT literacy training through self help efforts by linking up with computer training institutes within the institution community to acquire knowledge and skills in ICT.

Scope of the Study

The study anchors on the assessment of the availability of ICT facilities and teachers’ literacy level and their impact on the academic performance of secondary school students in Abakaliki LGA Ebonyi State.

Research Questions

  1. What are the ICT equipments that could be used in teaching and learning processes?
  2. What is the ICT availability in Secondary Schools in Abakaliki?
  3. What are the benefits of ICT facilities utilization in these Secondary Schools?

4. What is the teachers’ literacy level in Abakaliki secondary schools?

PROJECT TOPIC- AVAILABILITY OF ICT FACILITIES AND TEACHERS’ LITERACY LEVEL AND THEIR IMPACT ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN ABAKALIKI LGA OF EBONYI STATE

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