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A Review of Prison Act and A Call for Prison Reform

Prison Act and Prison Reform

ABSTRACT

Imprisonment is a measure aimed at the cutting of an offender from the society. Over the years, Nigerian prison system has been faced with a lot of challenges. There challenges stem from the legal instruments regulating prisons and its administration in Nigeria. We commenced this long essay by looking at the various sections of the Nigerian prisons Act. This long essay adopted doctrinal methods in the course of this research, it was discovered that many sections of the Nigerian prisons fall below the minimum standard for the treatment of prisoners among others. It was based on the above that we made our recommendations to wit. That the prison Act should be amended to met up the international standard for the protection of prisoners. And prison service autonomy should be granted to ensure effective administration in penal system, to enhance the administration criminal justice in Nigeria.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to the Study

            The major important of this research work is to explore the short falls of prison administration in Nigeria and the ability to reform the prison structure to apt the modern trend in the global development. Prisons are penal institution created with the sole objective of curtailing the freedom of movement and certain rights of individual whose liberty has been restricted by law.

            Prison Act is a law made to regulate the conduct of prisoners and prison institution. Therefore the progressive incursion of the British into the hinterland and the establishment of British protectorate towards the end of the 19th century necessitated the establishment of prison as the last link in the criminal justice system. The prison regulation as a guide to prison procedure was established in 1917 to prescribe on admission into custody by treatment and classification procedure as well as staffing, dieting and clothing regime for the prisons. The introduction of specialized units to take care of the specific areas of the prison service[1].

            Thus some identifiable nature of Prison Act as a guide to protect the conduct of those who offend the law administered by the officers of the prison[2], it then stands firmly to with the idea of law and what cannot be only law but goes beyond law as a measure to rehabilitate and reform individual, the purpose of this research work is to explore deeply even the inherent right of human being which are not attainable even when not legally imprisoned.

            According to this research work it is now discovered that the real intention of Decree No 9 of 1972 is no more in line with the present provision of Prison Act and its administration in Nigeria, according to act prisoners means any person lawfully committed to custody and with this definition a pre-trial detainee who has spent five years in the prison without been convicted, sentenced by the court of law has not being lawfully put in custody, it still reserve him as to breach of his fundamental right therefore unconstitutional since the court of law has not convicted or sentenced him but the pre-trail detainee has over stayed in the prison without access to justice, failure of any country to protect her citizen from crime and provide them with access to justice under sustainable development is seen as a bridge of human right racial to him uncompromisingly[3].

            Such an inhuman treatment of which lead a detainee to carry the toga of awaiting trial may well spend a decade waiting for a prison term that could have lasted for less than twelve months as a result of lack of access to justice. It may be ascribed as a result of poor investigation by police, delay by counsel lack of firmness on the part of the magistrate and judges as well the dysfunction that hampers the prison efficiency in transporting the inmate to and from the court for their trial.

            This research would as well show the need for our judiciary, the police, the Barr, the prison officer, the legislature and executive to cohere and establish a better framework for reforming our prison system. The provision of the prison regulation which states that convicted prisoners shall not receive any food, clothing, bedding or any other article except the prison allowance, unless by order of medical officer[4] is highly against human right of an individual. There is no stipulated tenure of inmates, rather we should underscore the need and importance of imprisonment, purpose while and the retributivism, rehabilitation and reform of human kind and including the classes of prison, the work of Prison Act and death convicts, the Prison Act and imprisoned convicts the solution for congestion lack of provision of detainees tenure in the Prison Act.

            This work will as well explain the intention of punishment as MC Cornville question of crime and punishment are rarely absent from public discourse with the functional aims or prison and contested and are realities as potentially multipurpose of justification and exact means of imprisonment as an acceptable form of offender management. In reality now considering the manners in which the Nigeria prison service so greatly infiltrate ideologies discourse and theories of Nigeria citizens it is vital to assess the origin of understanding of prison and Prison Act and their consequences thoroughly.

            All these issues are examined critically in order to ensure that a fair system in the place after all the existence, aims, practices and justification of prison are so arguably influenced by public opinion that without doubt, it is imperative to expose misguided notions that may threaten justice. The prison as seen through the public eyes will be assessed and this research will also continue to expound the potential injustices that may arise from misinformed or misguided matter.

            Lack of access to justice has brought some focus primarily on the Prison Act as a continuous justifiably institution and debate whether prison is justified both in theory and in practice. It is critically assessed that a supposed purpose of imprisonment as response to crime will be from a moral point of view and ideological manners because conflict with the prevalence of justice will be explored and deconstructed.

            Moreover in doing this to address in what ways exactly general assumption about prison and prisoners themselves are formulated and shared throughout Nigeria, the major reason why prison was established is to ensure the protection of the society from offenders. It is therefore logical that the public may be unable to reach a fairly informed opinion on imprisonment as a punishment, it is only a place made for those who break the law like murderer are kept in prison to ensure protection of society, this is because imprisonment is a penalty that the state can ascribe to an individual who has broken the law by committing a crime[5].

            Jeremy Bentham, in his work utilitarianist held the view that the modern prison system was burn in London and it was revolutionary in that it was proposed that being held or rather incarcerated was actually part of an offenders punishment from then prison become more frequently used as punishment. The causes of crime and the rate of increase in the imprisonment led to congestion of prison. The purpose set out for sentencing an individual to imprisonment were set out for the first time as punishment, reduction of crime, reform and rehabilitation, protection of public and the making of reparation. It is also for punishment or revenge which is retributism is the simple notion that wrong doer should be punished because they deserve it as stated and articulated in some way that it is morally right to return evil for evil that two wrongs can some ways make a right, this is because the aim of making law is to protect the interest of the society with lives and property to guide the administration of justice in Nigeria.

            The research work on prison system is taxing one and it has no way been the intention of this dessertion to ignore the challenges that it faces in housing, meeting the requirements of and attempting to reduce the reoffending rates of prisoners. As part of a single institution the Prison System is tasked with dealing with some of the most needy individuals that present specific and often competing demand, it is bound to assist each individual inmates with equality despite poler extremes of ages, gender, health, classes and ethnicity.

            The real intention of this work is not to criticise prison system in Nigeria but to assist it from an ideological and academic vantage point. This is because apart from investigating whether or not the prison service is able to respond adequately to prisoners need, this work has attempted to evaluate whether or not the prison system is justified of itself.

            However the prison system will provide for incapacitation of inmates because it assumes that if an offender is in prison he then cannot commit further crime[6].

            This is in a way people are thought to be protected if an individual is prevented, physically incapacitated from committing further crime, the reoffending and consequently crime rate will decrease.

            The environment of prison should be seen as a place where people involved should be educated and well trained with skill acquisition and be made to imbibe with the missionary life if for Christians and made their religious well known as well as the laws of did and don’t to reform and rehabilitate inmates at the end of their service, education is a key to success, school should be also established in prisons to make them lead a good life and turn to better citizens of this country. One of the measures to control crime as a rational act is by convincing potential offenders that crime is poor choice that will bring no reward but instead pain, hardship, and deprivation. As punishment is in itself harmful it’s existence is justified only if at the end it promises to prevent greater evil than it creates punishment with poor objective following the outline condition:

a.         To prevent all criminal offences

b.         When it cannot prevent crime to convince offender to commit less serious crime

c.         To ensure that criminals use no more force than is necessary

d.         To prevent crimes as cheaply as possible

            The rational choice theory set out situational method for crime prevention as criminality is trait criminal activity is offense specific. Crime reduction should be achieved through policies that convince potential criminals to desist from criminals activities delay their actions or avoid a particular act and criminal target may be avoided if.

1.         The means to commit crime are controlled

2.         The potential target are carefully guarded

3.         Potential offenders are carefully monitored

4.         Crime prevention can be achieved reducing the opportunity people have to commit particular crime through the practice of situational crime prevention as stated by Oscar Newman who was the first to popularize situational crime prevention in the USA in 1979’s.

            The research will also show the important of deterrence as a certainty of punishment according to deterrence theory of probability of arrest, conviction and sentencing increase, crime rate should be declined this is because rational offenders will soon realize that the increase likelihood of punishment out weight any benefit their perceive from committing crimes, for instances the epitome of historical woodcut used in execution of England serves as punishment[7] and has been traditionally used to deter criminal offences, the execution will have an impact on common person to desist from evil act. More so, it will still explore the need to address congestion how and why overcrowding of the inmates are not good. Lack of access to justice, delay in the administration of justice has been recorgnised as the greatest evil confronting the justice sectors.

            In this case of criminal justice system the situation is worse when it is considered against the background of fundamental and constitutional right of an individual which is provided the constitution of Nigeria respectively shall be used as an example and as well protected the right of an inmate to forced labour[8] right to dignity of human person, human right law of the international convention on civil and political rights 1966 expressly forbids the subjection or anyone to torture or cruel in human or degrading treatment or punishment[9] of prisoners.

            Conclusion though the duty of the court is to do justice and only by achieving those measures established by law as penalties for offenders, sometimes the real aims of the courts where not limited to punishment and deterring the offenders but even to impose sentence which would deter others from committing offences of such character and serves as a warning to other not to inflict over labour on inmates prison serves as protection medium to the society. If the court might also ignore the mitigating on the whole merited sentence in order to protect the public from the particular offender in a specified circumstances, a law to impose an extended terms of imprisonment shall be in place[10], such provision that empowered courts to mitigate and pass sentence to an offender to taking into account such matters in the opinion of the court[11].

1.2 Statement of the Problem

            For the Prison Act to comprehensively effects a notable change of prison administration in Nigeria, there should be cohesion of the legislatures, the judiciary, the executive, the police and other stakeholders to address the issue of prison congestion, tenure of pre-trial detainees. This work became importance as the Prison Act has become obsolete if juxtaposed with the minimum requirements for the treatment of prisoners globally. It is the light of the above that prompted this research so that useful suggestions will be made aimed at moving the government to reform the administration of criminal justice system which prison is at the receiving end of prisoners. 

1.3 Research Questions

In order to address the problem under review, this research raises the following questions:

1.         Is the Nigerian Prison Act adequate to meet up with international standard for the treatment of prisoners?

2.         If the answer to question one above is in the negative then what are problems in the Nigerian Prison Act that make it fall below the international minimum standard?

3.         How can those problems be solved?

1.4 Objective of the Study

            The general objective of this long essay is to review the Nigerian Prison Act and call for prison reforms in Nigeria. The specific objectives are:

1.         To ensure the Prison Act would provide tenure for a pre-trial detainee.

2.         To make suggestions aimed at reducing prisons congestions

3.         To make suggestions on the need to improve the welfare of the prisoners.

4.         To carry out advocacy on the protection of prisoners rights.

1.5 Scope of the Study 

            The scope of this work is to review the Nigerian Prison Act and call for reforms. The work is intended to cover the entire provisions of the Prison Act and the regulations made there under, reference could be made in the welfare of prisoners, the protection of prisoners’ rights and other related matters when the need arises.

1.6 Research Methodology

            The long essay adopted a doctrinal research method. By this, the utilised the primary sources of materials such as case laws and statutes. We also referred to the secondary source of materials such as textbooks, journals, newspapers, etc while internet sources were used as tertiary sources of materials.

1.7 Significance of the Study

            This long essay would create awareness on the need to reform the prison system in Nigeria and increase access to justice for the prisoners in Nigeria.

1.8 Limitation of the Study

            The following were the challenges we faced in the course of this long essay.

1.         Time constraint: the tune for study coupled with class activities affected this study.

2.         Responses rate: there is a little short fall in the response rate due to fact that the officer view that the secret of the prison would be reviewed, then a focused only on the provision of review in prison Acts, textbooks, internet journals.

3.         Finance: Lack of finances affected this work so much by limiting the scope of this work to Prison Act and internet call for prison reform in Nigeria.


[1]  Decree No 9 of 1972 Now Prison Act, Cap P 29 Law of Federation of Nigeria, 2004

[2]  S.1 of the Prison Act Cap  P 29 Law of Federation of Nigeria, 2004

[3]  Ola Agbaje; Justice for All: Perspectives on the Lagos State Citizens’ Rights Project (Lagos: Lagos State  Ministry of Justice Review Series 2005).

[4]  S.27 of Prison Act, Regulation Cap  P 29 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.

[5]  Nichola Dewhurst, Analysis of Justification of Imprisonment of Punishment and Culture of Punitiveness in Comparison to the Realities of Prison Life, B Criminology and Criminal Justice University Leeds www.internetjournalofcriminology.com.

[6]  I. Kant and W. Hasties, Philosophy of Punishment. (trans) Edimburgh (1888) Pg 88 – 159.

[7]  Larry Sigel Criminology, sixth edition King Charles of England in 30th January 1649 pg 115.

[8]  Regulation 33 of the Prisons Regulation, op.cit.

[9]  Section 34 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended)

[10]  Article 7 United Nation Convention on Civil and Political Right 1966

[11]  S.28 (1) of Criminal Justice Act of England 1999.

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Antimicrobial Activity of Jatropha Tanjorensis Against Foodborne Pathogens

Jatropha Tanjorensis Against Foodborne Pathogens

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

  Foodborne illness is any illness resulting from the food spoilage of contaminated food , pathogenic bacteria, viruses , or parasites that contaminate food,  as well as chemical or natural toxins such as poisonous mushrooms and various species of beans that have not been boiled for at least 10 minutes. (Acheson, 1999).

The war against foodborne diseases is presently facing new challenges due to the globalization of the food market, climate change and changing patterns of human consumption as fresh and minimally processed foods are currently preferred (Schelin et al., 2011). As food is biological in nature, it is capable of supporting the growth of microorganisms and foodborne diseases from the ingestion of contaminated foods and food products (Guyader and Atmar, 2008). More than 250 different types of viruses, bacteria, parasites, toxins, metals, and prions are associated with foodborne diseases in humans (Schmidt et al., 2009). Although viruses are more responsible for more than 50% of all foodborne illnesses; generally hospitalizations and deaths associated with foodborne infections are due to bacterial agents. The infections range from mild gastroenteritis to life-threatening neurologic, hepatic, and renal syndromes caused by either toxin from the “disease-causing” microbe, or by the human body’s reaction to the microbe itself.

Food poisoning is divided into three types: ‘Infection’, ‘intoxication’, and ‘intermediate’ (Schmidt et al., 2009). ‘Infection’ is caused by the oral ingestion of viable microorganisms in adequate amounts to build up infection and the commencement of symptoms is normally delayed, reflecting the time required for an infection to develop. Examples of food-poisoning that cause infection are enteric viruses, Salmonella, Campylobacter and Vibrio species. ‘Intoxication’ on the other hand, is caused by the ingestion of toxins that have been pre-formed in the food. Therefore, there is no necessity for live organisms to be present and the onset of the symptoms is rapid. Examples are Bacillus cereus and Staphylococcus aureus. The ‘intermediate’ food poisoning occurs when live bacteria are ingested and subsequently produce a toxin in the host, as in the case of Clostridium perfringens food poisoning (Teplitski et al., 2009).

Foodborne diseases is a major source of morbidity and mortality in the general population, mainly in susceptible groups, such as infants, the elderly and the immunocompromised (Vaillant et al., 2005). According to the World Health Organization (WHO), up to 1.5 billion cases of diarrhea and more than three million deaths that occur in children every year are as a result of food and water contamination and in the United States of America (USA) it is estimated that, foodborne diseases result in 76 million illnesses, 325,000 hospitalizations and 5000 deaths each year (Mead et al., 1999). In France, it is estimated that these pathogens cause 10,200 – 17,800 hospitalizations yearly (Vaillant et al., 2005). The developing world are not spared, in South East Asia, approximately one million children below the age of five years die each year from diarrheal diseases due to contaminated food and water . Several devastating foodborne outbreaks have been reported on the African continent; in 2004, Kenya experienced an acute aflatoxicosis outbreak which was attributed to maize whereas in 2007, Angola registered 400 cases of bromide poisoning, associated with the use of sodium bromide as cooking salt.

The prevalence of antimicrobial resistance among foodborne pathogens is reported to have increased (Yucel et al., 2005), probably as a result of selection pressure created by the use of antimicrobials in animal health. In this study we therefore present a comprehensive review on some selected and important foodborne pathogens and associated illnesses, as well as treatment and control measures in an effort to throw more light on the danger they pose to the community.

             Fooodborne infections are the major cause of hospitalization and death throughout the word (Van et al., 2007). In the United States of America each year about 76 million of food borne related illness, and almost 5000 deaths are estimated, causing by known and unknown pathogens. The infections by known pathogen like Salmonella, Listeria and Toxoplasma are 14 million lead to 60,000 hospitalization and 1,800 deaths each year. While a huge number of cases are related to unknown pathogens. There are more than 200 known diseases which can transmit through food to cause food borne illness including Virus, bacteria, Parasite, Toxins and prions. The sign and symptoms of these diseases range from mild intestinal problem to Life-threatening chronic and acute disease like hepatitis and kidney failure. New trends in the food supply, production and trades are also leading to the emergence and spreading of food borne pathogens and emergence of new and more dangerous serotype and species (Paul et al., 1999).

               Epidemiology of food borne diseases is rapidly changing and foods previously thought safe are now studied as unsafe and contaminated. The emergence of new pathogens and known food borne pathogens are now associated with new food vehicles and way of transmission is changing. A number of microorganisms considering high risk pathogens today were not recognized as a causative agent of food borne infections. For example, Campylobacter jejuni, E.coli O157:H7, Listeria monocytogenes and Cyclospora cayetanesis. Several emerging food borne diseases may cause chronic clinical complication or even disability some time. Listeria monocytogenes can cause miscarriages in pregnant women and animals or result in meningitis in patients with chronic diseases. Toxoplasmosis can lead to congenital complications and E. coli O157:H7 with association of traveler and kid diarrhea can also lead to hemolytic uremic syndrome, or kidney failure. The large number of food borne disease is thought to be caused by unknown pathogens. Even in United States of America, according to the proportion of the unknown pathogen causing food borne infection is more than 70% (Paul et al., 1999). 68% outbreaks were not identified from 1993 to 2002. The outbreak is considered as of known etiology when at least one clinical sample is laboratory conformed from the affected peoples (Domiguez et al., 2009).

         The cause of the emergence of new pathogen or reappearance of established ones are weakly understood, but are often related to the ecological change and disturbance by the human beings. Furthermore the changing way of food production, improvement, traveling and trades have affected the transmission routs of food borne pathogen, and it will continue to affect in an unfavorable way the epidemiology of food borne infection (Tassios and Kerr, 2009). It has been declare by WHO that about 1.8 million kids died in 1998 in developing countries (excluding china) caused by biological agents or microorganisms originating from food and water. Every third person in the industrialized countries may be victim of food borne infections (WHO, 2010). Food borne infections are equally important in developed and developing countries. Almost 2.5 million childhood deaths occur annually due to acute food borne diarrhea. Though diarrhea is less common in developed countries as compared to developing countries, but equally considerable. About 4% of hospitalization and 2% of outdoor patients among kids are due to diarrhea (Marcus, 2008). The reported cases of Salmonellosis in Australia have averaged around 6000 annually from 1992 to 1998. While the under report cases of food borne Salmonellosis are estimated between 240,000 to 650,000 annually (Sumner et al., 2004). Diarrheal diseases are the main public health problem in Thailand and each year approximately more than 120,000 are reported food poisoning (Minami et al., 2010).

1.2       Aim and Objectives

The of this work was to examine the antimicrobial activity of jatropha tanjorensis against Foodborne pathogens

 Objectives of the Study

  1. To determine the antibacterial properties of Jetropha tanjorensis leaf extracts.
  2. To examine the antifungal of Jetropha tanjorensis leaf extracts against some fungals.
  3. To determine the antibiotics activity of some food borne pathogens.
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Development of Academic Information Monitoring System for Nigerian Universities

Academic information monitoring system- CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

            Universities produce high-level manpower in various fields. There are conventional universities which produce graduates in the pure and applied sciences and arts. There are also specialized universities, which produce graduates in their areas of specialization. In the latter category there are: universities of technology, universities of agriculture and one military university. By the end of 2013 there were 128and 152 by the end of 2017 universities in Nigeria. The duration of studies in universities ranges from three to seven academic sessions, depending on the nature of the programme. An academic session consists of nine months, divided into two semesters of fifteen to eighteen weeks each. First year entry requirement into most universities is a minimum of SSCE/GCE Ordinary Level Credits at maximum of two sittings. In addition, minimum cut-off marks of 180 and above, out of a maximum of 400 marks in Joint Admission and Matriculation Board Entrance Examination (JAMB) is required.

            Students’ academic evidence usually provides both student and staffs with numerous services designed to support them in attaining their academic goals and management objectives respectively. The academic report of students are the assets of the university therefore, it is the one and only duty of the school to form policies concerning uniformity in the kind of information collected and recorded (Eludire, 2003). Nigeria’s National Policy on Education ensures that the policy addressed the perceived needs of the government in power and also to ensure that the education sector was supportive of government development goals. Nigeria’s vision of education as an instrument for national development is reflected in the National Policy on Education. The government relies on education as a springboard for its development and reform agenda. This is reflected in the emphatic resonance in the NPE that no nation can raise about the quality of its education system. The National Policy on Education defines the structure of Nigeria’s education and handles critical issues about the educational sector. The National Policy on Education document addresses the issues of imbalance in the provision of education in different parts of the country with regard to access, quality of resources and girls’ education. Education is organized into 9 years of basic education, 3 years of senior secondary education and 4 years of university. Universities worldwide which are now about 25,000 in number plays more and more vital roles in modern society and are consider as fundamental possessions for the nation in addressing numerous policy priorities (Bamiro and Boulton, 2012). It is unfortunate that all educational institutions in the developing world such as the Universities, Colleges of Education and polytechnics in Nigeria still operate under the manual method of lecture attendance, malpractice check and record keeping. The manual system in use is not competent because it consumes a lot of time and paper (Garcia et al, 2008). Class attendance for Students plays an important role in Nigerian Universities today.

            Academic monitoring is the process of observing students’ academic progress in one or more courses over a period of time. It is used by lecturers to compare the performance of a particular student to that of his/her classmates. It is also used to identify students who are struggling, excelling or underachieving. Information for examining students’ progress is usually collected in the form of test marks and lecturer assessment levels or grades. It is used to monitor the effectiveness of teaching across all courses. Academic monitoring is useful to student because it allows them to become conscious of their examination prospects and any difference between their current and predicted performance. The academic information monitoring system captures lecture attendance of student, number of lectures a lecturer delivered in a semester, monitor the lectures been delivered by the lecturers and take care of malpractice check in Examination hall in Nigerian Universities. Face Recognition is importance in providing biometric authentication with easy image possession that can be used for online and offline applications. Biometrics refers to the automatic identification of a person based on his or her physiological or behavioral characteristics.

            Tripathi (2011) defines biometric system as a pattern identification system which operates by getting biometric information from a person and extracts a feature set from the data which is acquired and helps in comparing this feature set against the template stored in the database. The human physical characteristics like face, hand geometry, fingerprints, voice, palm, signature and iris are known as biometrics and one of the most important techniques is the face recognition. When a person’s photograph is taken, it can be used by the computer for recognition. The coordinates of features such as the inside corner of eyes; the outside corner of eyes will be extract. From these coordinates a list of distances such as width of mouth and width of eyes will be computed. Recognition of faces is not just to recognize an individual but also to find out other personal data related with an individual such as other photos featuring the individual, blog posts, social networking profiles, Internet behavior, travel patterns, etc. all through facial features alone (Harley, 2011). A lot of questions have been raised on how to have access and know someone’s whereabouts and people with them at any day or given time (Cackley, 2015). Moreover, individuals have limited ability to keep away from or frustrate face recognition tracking unless they put their faces out of sight. This fundamentally changes the dynamic of day-to-day privacy by enabling any marketer, government agency or random stranger to secretly collect the identities and associated personal information of any individual captured by the face recognition system (Harley, 2011). Consumers may not know or be aware of the fact about them, what is being used for and it makes them not to know or approve how their personal information will be shared (Cackley, 2015).

            Most educational institutions’ administrators are concerned about student irregular attendance. Students staying away from school without permission can affect their overall academic performance. The usual method of taking attendance by calling names or signing on paper is time consuming and insecure hence inefficient. One of the solutions to address this problem is face recognition technology. Departments may specify a higher percentage and additional requirements where appropriate based on NUC minimum attendance requirement 75% of teaching and learning events. The full implementation of NUC policy on 75% attendance will go a long way to improve the performance of the student and has considerable impact on their performance. Students whose attendance falls below the attendance requirements are disqualified for summative assessment. This is because sometimes student may not attend lectures at all in a semester and still have in mind to write Exams. Several factors can influence the level of attendance including university culture, students hustling to meet up with high increase of fees, workload, teaching methods and the teacher. Class attendance can vary considerably across countries, universities and courses. The studied carried out by (Marburger, 2001) using economics students to find out that in the United States, their average rate of lecture attendance was 81.5%.

            Universities need to conduct examinations as yardstick for assessment. It is the most practical way of assessment in education. Examinations could be internal or external; it could be oral, written or both. Example of internal examinations are continuous assessment tests, terminal, semester and annual or promotion examinations. Example of external or public examination is the joint Admission Matriculation Board (JAMB) and National Teachers’ Institute (NTI) conduct admission tests into tertiary institutions. In the university the lecturers use to complain that insufficient teaching and learning facilities, poor conditions of service of teachers, fear of failure by students and admission of unqualified candidate into universities are responsible for examination malpractice. This disorganized situation is having a negative result on the nation’s quality of education and the kind of certificates issued to students at different levels. So many people can no longer defend their certificate. Overall academic performance of student may considerably be affected because they are not consistent in class attendance and this leads them to be involved in exam malpractice (Geetha, 2016). Exam malpractice is now affecting our tertiary institutions and thus has become a societal problem. This current trend is alarming and calls for proper management in order to rid the school system of its consequences. In short, it has become a plague in the nation’s education system which needs to be given attention without delay. Insufficient concern to student’s wellbeing also increases the high rate of Exam malpractice (Brimble and Stevenson-Clarke, 2005). Examination malpractice is any immoral behavior before, during or after any examination. Reasons for exam malpractice are the students’ laziness to attend lectures, low moral standard in schools; candidate’s fear of failure, lack of confidence in them, students’ exam preparation is not enough and 419 syndromes that have eaten deep into the life of our society.

1.2       STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

            A number of challenges have been identified as a hindrance to the realization of access to good quality education in Nigerian Universities. There is no doubt that the insufficiency in delivering lectures has negative impacts on the general quality of basic education in Nigerian Universities. Managing the number of attendance or absence in the academic environment is a very big problem. Based on the fact that the amount of money that students pay for their education are high and they are lazy to attend classes, it leads to their poor academic performance and the reputation of the university in general is highly affected (Jain. U et al).  In some institutions, without a certain percentage of attendance, students are not allowed to sit for an examination while in some other institutions; attendance is part of the continuous assessment. Existing system of Academic information system in Nigerian University have been found to be prone to the following problems:

  1. The issue with the use of electronic  cards  or  password  based  system for attendance allows for pretense since cards or passwords can be shared or someone can ask other person to insert his/her card or password.
  2. Capturing attendance manually is not always accurate because students cheat by putting signature of an absent person and record their friends’ attendance falsely and it is time consuming.
  3. Overall academic performance of student may considerably be affected because they are not consistent in class attendance.
  4. When lecturers use the traditional attendance system of calling names and recording students’ presence on paper it is easily manipulated by the students because they can pretend and answer for their friends.
  5. Some lecturers may not attend lectures up to 35% in a semester and still set Exam questions for students.
  6. Based on the poor lecture attendance, students resort to examination malpractice.

1.3       AIM AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

            The aim of this research is Development an Academic Information Monitoring System for Nigerian Universities that will be able to capture the number of lecture attendance, monitor lectures delivered by lecturers and monitor examination process in order to take care of malpractice check of students for Nigerian Universities.

The objectives are to;

  1. Design and create a web-based platform for real time monitoring of students’/lecturers’ attendance to classes.
  2. Build a structure to capture and store lecturers/students details using SQLite database.
  3. Design and create a structure that takes care of students’ course registration form.
  4. Design and create a platform to captures when lecturers deliver their lectures, because a lecturer maybe in attendance but did not deliver lectures.
  5. Design and create a platform to capture examination hall to help monitor malpractice.
  6. Design and create a platform that records examination process and takes still pictures for the purpose of monitoring.

1.4       SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

            To attain the overarching goal of reaching the top twenty economies by year 2020, the Government realized the need to enhance development in key sectors such as education. In education, the goal is to develop a modern and vibrant education system which will provide for every Nigerian the opportunity and facility to achieve his or her maximum potential and provide the country with sufficient and skilled manpower. Reliable and secure University monitoring system is vital in today’s education with respect to number of lecture attendance, monitor the lectures been delivered and malpractice check in examination hall. Technology has been seen to provide efficiency in processing and management of all these information overtime. Attendance records are important to understand student progress and development. This system aimed to automate the attendance procedure of an educational institution using facial recognition technology. This will save time wasted on calling out names and it gives a perfect method of attendance marking. Adopting a medium that automates the process of attendance capturing, monitor the lectures been delivered by the lecturers and checking malpractice help to improve quality, increase throughput and reduce costs. Therefore, development of Academic Information Monitoring System for Nigerian Universities monitors the university academic duties by capturing the number of lecture attendance, monitor the lectures been delivered and malpractice checks of student for Nigerian Universities. In general, it reduces and solves the problems listed in chapter one which is associated with existing system of university academic duties. This research will be of immense benefits to Nigerian Universities because:

  1. The problem of pretense in the use of shared electronic cards or password based system for attendance will be addressed by using biometric recognition system which includes facial recognition.
  2. Capturing attendance using face recognition system helps because students’ attendance cannot be forged easily and academic performances will improve.
  3. With an electronic system that monitor the lectures been delivered, the lecturers will sit up to their responsibilities.
  4. Exam malpractices in the Nigerian universities will be reducing to the minimal.
  5. If the number of lecture attendance will determine if the student will write Exam or not, it will enable the students to be serious with their attendance.
  6. The registration of courses by students will be on time.
  7. This will improve the quality of students been produce in the Nigerian universities.

1.5       SCOPE OF THE STUDY

The scope of this research Development of Academic Information Monitoring System is for Nigerian Universities.

1.6       JUSTIFICATION OF THE STUDY

            There is no doubt that if the propose system is implemented will be more convenient than the existing one, the following are the features of the proposed system. The proposed application will use local host that will be available 24 hours a day. Both lecturers and students at school and at home can conveniently have access.

After a proper and effective implementation, the system will be able to identify students and lecturers and recognize their facial features. Once the features are recognized, the platform will increment the number of attendance. The system also monitors the lecture by taking the video record of the session. Supervisor watches the video and monitor the lectures been delivered. The platform also records video of exam surveillance which takes care of exam malpractice check.   

The proposed system automatically will improve the quality of students been produce in the Nigerian universities, thereby reducing errors and solve the problems in the existing system.

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Effect of Collaborative Strategy on Secondary Schools Students’ Achievement on Written Essays in English Language

collaborative strategy- Abstract

This study investigated the Effects of Collaborative Instructional Strategy on Students’ Achievement on Written Essay in Abakaliki Urban. The general purpose of the study was to determine the effects of collaborative instructional strategy on the achievement of students in written essay. The population of the study included all the senior secondary school two (SS 2) students in Abakaliki Urban in Ebonyi State. There are sixty one (61) public secondary schools in Abakaliki urban with total number of (6,797) senior secondary two (SS 2) students (Abakaliki Zonal Education Board, 2014). The sample of the study comprised of 330 SS II students in six co-educational secondary schools in Abakaliki Urban of Ebonyi State. The study used quasi-experimental study of pretest, posttest non equivalent control group design. The collaborative strategy was assigned the experimental group while the lecture method was assigned to the control group. The English Essay writing Achievement Test (EEAT) was used for data collection. Mean and standard deviation were used to answer research questions while analysis of covariance ANCOVA was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. Results show that students in collaborative strategies group performed better than those in lecture method group. The female students performed slightly better than the male students. However, male and female students in the collaborative group performed better than male and female students in the lecture method. The result also showed that there is no interaction effect of teaching method and gender on students’ achievement. Test of significance shows that there is significant difference in the mean achievement of students taught using collaborative strategy and those taught with lecture method. There was no significant difference in the mean achievement of male and female students when taught with collaborative or lecture method. There was no significance interaction effect of teaching methods and gender on students’ achievement in written essay.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to the Study

          English language is a second language to many nations colonized by the whites, but has reached a high global position which other languages have not. The history of the English language in Nigeria can be traced back to the colonial era. It was then a language of high status of great importance. It has since then continued to enjoy a very high status within the Nigerian society, fifty five years after independence. As it stands now, it has become an international language. Since it has gained access into all aspects of life including, science, technology, international relations policy-making and administrative records. Widdowso (2000) states that it is practically used in publishing many learning resources globally because of its relevance and equally a subject that appears in the school curriculum in most parts of the world.

          The importance of English language cannot be overemphasized looking at its dominance in Nigeria. Notwithstanding the Nigerian multilingual situation, the English language is one of the core subjects in the secondary school curriculum. The role it plays, in the teaching-learning process in schools right from the primary to tertiary levels makes it very paramount to the academic success of the students .Examinations  are conducted in English, textbooks recommended for students in every subject (except the mother tongue) are all written in English language. Aliyu (2004) in support of the above assertation states that English language enjoys a lot of prestige as a language over and above other Nigeria languages.

          Baldesh (2004) attests that good education should equip its products to communicate adequately, expressing their opinions, emotions, thoughts, attitudes, clearly in an organized manner. Agwu (2002) in his support on the importance of English language comments that our country might not function properly without adequate skill in English language. Still on the importance of English language, Ubahakwe (1979) commends the significant role English language has played in our secondary schools, our society, and has remained the official language for the elite. Kanno, Onwukwe & Maduabum (2002) observe that though, there is a welcome trend in the development of indigenous Nigerian language, English language will remain a functional national language in future. Aliyu (2004) states emphatically that:

English is in effect, the second language of Nigeria, essential for success in the educational process and in others areas of national life. It is not surprising therefore; that so much attention and resources have been and continue to be, devoted to its teaching in Nigeria schools, and it is likely to continue for many years.(P :33)

          Ibe (2010) states that English language is part of student’s environment and therefore should be gripped by students in SSS not only for examination purpose but for total competence in future endeavors. No wonder some scholars having seen the importance of English language in Nigeria attest that it is the lifeblood of the whole educational system and life success in Nigeria as a whole (Afolayan, 1984). Federal Republic of Nigeria (2004) buttresses the importance of English language that virtually all human official activities revolve around   English   language. Therefore, English language is very important to life.

Good teaching of English language more especially in the English as a second language (ESL) environment requires the effective teaching of the complex interrelated skills, listening, speaking, reading and writing. The Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) syllabus clearly  categorized  English language into five; comprehension, lexis and structure, summary, essay and letter writing and oral English of which a good knowledge of  the first three enhance the performance in the essay writing and oral English.

The word essay is derived from the French infinitive essayer meaning “to try” or “to attempt”. In English, essay first meant “a trial” or “an attempt” and still an alternative meaning. The first Frenchman Micheal de montaigne (1533-1592) was the first to describe his work as essays. He used the term to characterize the attempt to put his “thoughts in writing, (Osiamro, 1990).

          Essay is a short piece of writing given to students. It is a part of a course of study in English language (Oxford Advance Learner’s Dictionary, 2005). Agwu and Nweke (2000) assert that the organization and arrangement of ideas in a logical and sequential order to make a complete meaning is called an essay. Thus essay must have a topic or subject matter which is developed in paragraphs with a coherent start or introduction, a well arranged body and a short conclusion. Essay and letter writing skills are very important in the whole language development and learning it is expressing and long lasting than speaking and often less understanding by learners. Essay writing is the ultimate of language skills and determines to a great extent the success of students in both internal and external examinations.

Ghaith (2006) sees essay writing as a complex process that allows writers to explore thoughts and ideas and make them visible and concrete. It is therefore necessary that continuous efforts be made at enhancing the teaching and learning of essay writing among learners of English language. Looking at the importance, writing well is not just an option but a necessity. Otagburuagu (2002) stating the importance of essay writing observes that it has common influence on humanity because it is a common tool of spreading information. However, essay writing is of different types of argumentative, narrative, expository, descriptive and expository.

            Narrative essay is defined in different ways by different people. Oba (2005) defines narrative essay as relating to a number of events or narrating a story and it is used as means of explaining an idea when anecdote is introduced. However, narrative essay is just telling a story which gives account to the reader. In a writers’ point of view, this story telling goes beyond having a beginning, middle and the end but must have a plot which should carry and develop throughout the story. This plot should be filled with major happenings of a story which will together give it a point or them. In a nutshell, narrative is a story writing about a personal experience.      

            Narrative essay provides human interest, trigger our curiosity and bring us close to the storyteller. It provides entertainment, it also provide insights by helping individual to discover values, explore, options and examine motives it link people together by sharing history. Narrative also gives psychological healing. A good narrative must involve reading in the story, arrange events in sequential order, include detailed, observations of people, places and happenings. It should also be told in writers point view. Narrative should be written in first person e.g ‘s’ however third persons, also be used, it relies on concrete, sensory details. It should also include the solving setting, character, climax and ending.

            Descriptive essay is a kind of essay that give the student the chance to desire a person, place, object, emotion experience situation etc. It allows the student to point the picture of what he has in mind in words. It also enable the student to illustrate something with words using the five senses Agwu (2000) states that descriptive essay does not stress on action but particular qualities of characteristic thus for a student to describe, he must be a good observer and can carefully select the detail at what one describing. To write a descriptive essay, one must take time to brainstorm, use clear and concise language, choose vivid language, use your senses, know what you are thinking, leave the reader with a clear impression and be organized.

            According to Obah (2005), he states that exposition means explanation, an “exposing” of information and ideas. Decker in Obaj (2005) states that exposition is non meant to convince or persuade but to explain Obah (2006:225) further defines exposition as its primary function is not to tell a story or relate a happening although exposition often uses narration as on out of many techniques. Its primary function is not to create vivid pictures for the reader although description too may at times be a valuable technique of expositions. The primary function of exposition is not to convince or persuade… but the primary function of exposition itself is merely to explain”.

Looking at the above explanation one can say that expository essay combines the qualities of all the other types of essay. It investigates an idea, evaluate evidence, expound on ideas and also set argument about that idea in clear and concise manner. The aim of an expository essay is to explain a topic analogical and straightforward manner using some words like explain: “define” etc.

            Argumentative essay is a kind of essay that expects the students to investigate a topic, collect, generate and evaluate evidence and establish a position on the topic in a concise manner (Anikam, 1999). A writer is expected in an argumentative essay to defend a position on a topic using evidence from personal experience, literature, historical examples and research to support any point made. According to Anasi (2005) argumentative essay as a passage mainly devotes to arguing out an issue, ideally looking at both sides and lastly coring to a rational and logical conclusion. Basiong (2004) states that argumentative essay aims at persuading the reader to accept the writers point at view.

          Globally, essay writing is a predictor of academic success and a basic requirement for participation in civic life and economy. Secondary school graduates are unable to write good essay at the basic levels required by colleges or employers (Salami, 2007). In addition, every school day, 7,000 young people drop out of high school, many of them because they lack the basic literacy, (Alliance for Excellence Education,(AEE),2001).

Good essay writing skills are required for students to pass at credit level     in the West African School Certificate Examination. Essay writing takes the highest of the total marks, followed by comprehension II, summary, lexis and structure and test of orals respectively in the examination. It is therefore necessary that continuous efforts be made at enhancing the teaching and learning of essay writing skills among students to meet the growing demand of the secondary school curriculum (Kamil, 2003; Snow & Biancorosa, 2003).

          Nigeria is not an exception to the above trend.  In the national curriculum for senior secondary school English, FRN( 2004) states that the curriculum is designed, to achieve a high level of proficiency in the Nigerian students use of English language in preparing students for tertiary and vocational education for the world of work after leaving school. However, this dream cannot come true without achieving competency in the art of writing. Unfortunately, Nigerian students are far below this expectation in mastering the skills of written English. This has generated serious alarm for educators, parents and English teachers in particular.

          Jowitt (2001) states that from the statistics of results published by the West African Examination Council (WAEC) since the end of the Nigerian civil war, there has been constant failure in the performance of students in English language. Banjo (2001) observes that there is general feeling of dissatisfaction with the level of proficiency in English among the products both in secondary and tertiary institutions.

          Based on the separate research findings of Maduabum (2002) and Agwu (2002), there is still poor performance from our students of English in the West African School Certificate Examination and National Examination Council as measured by these bodies, 2009-2013.

Table 1: Shows percentage passes by grades for GCE English O/L (2009-2013)

Year Period Number sat Total: A1-C6 Total: P7-D8 Fail: F9
2009 May/June 45312 29.0 19.0 42.0
  Nov./Dec. 28516 26.0 47.0 27.0
2010 May/June 45115 37.0 28.0 35.0
  Nov./Dec. 32223 33.0 47.0 20.0
2011 May/June 588460 21.06 44.23 34.71
  Nov./Dec. 453377 17.58 73.24 9.18
2012 May/June 632544 13.14 55.82 31.04
  Nov./Dec. 441132 40.06 58.83 1.11
2013 May/June 636113 17.20 42.97 39.83
  Nov./Dec. 396640 47.09 45.12 7.79

   Source: WAEC Headquarters, Lagos (2013)               

          For the period of ten years, as reviewed by Maduabum (2002), there was no year that up to 50% of students who sat for the examination got grades 1-6 which is a prerequisite for higher education.

          In the same vain, Agwu (2002) presented two tables to show the poor performance in English for three years, 2011-2013.

Table 2: Shows a 3-year percentage performance of candidates in English

Subject % Of passes at credit (1-6) % Of failure (F9)
Year 2011 2012 2013 2011 2012 2013
English language 8.47 9.71 10.81 65.33 64.91 64.18

          The two tables show that within the three years of review (2011-2013) there was never a time up to 30% of the candidates who sat for the examination passed at credit level 1-6. One may be forced to ask what could have been the cause of this? Could it be that the strategy used by the teachers in teaching these students is ineffective or the students were not studious? 

          Research outcomes in the area of effective strategies for teaching writing abound, ranging from within and outside Nigeria Obi-Okoye (1991), Lawal (1995) Essex (1996), Janienne 2007, Jibowo (2009) and Morris (2009). Collins and Sommers (1985) were concerned with the development of effective strategies for teaching students how to write good essays. Such strategies has received widespread acceptance by researchers, educators and teachers. Obi Okoye (1991), Durvamaku-Dim and Duruaku-Dim, (2006), and Jibowo (2009) tried out the use of learner’s errors in teaching composition and creative writing. In recent times, the works of Janienne (2007) and Morris (2009) have added more literature in the strategies of teaching essay writing skills. Some teachers use conventional method of teaching in secondary schools which affects students’ performance and attitude. This is because this method is teacher centered and discourages active students’ participation (Otagburuagu, 2002). This does not give students chance to think, form basic concept, plan or even write coherently. In fact, essay writing is an aspect of English language that has been mostly neglected especially in senior secondary schools where under whatever circumstance, it is supposed to be the proper stage to develop and sharpen the skills of writing. According to Otagburuagu (2002), experiences and researchers have shown that writing skills are often the most neglected and the most badly taught by teachers. This also affects the achievement of students in essay writing. The instructional strategy used by a teacher can also influence student’s attitude negatively or positively depending on how it is applied in teaching process. Byrne (1991), Akinbela 2009;  Akende (2002) in support of this state that poor method of teaching leads to students’ poor achievement in English especially in essay writing.

          Educational research findings like physical strength, language and ability shows that gender also plays an important role in students’ achievement. Shaycoff (1999) states that boys seem to acquire significantly more information than girls in such areas as Mathematics, Physical Science, Electricity and Electronics as well as Mechanics while girls’ have significantly higher score gain than boys in interactive, grammar, memory for word, spelling and Home economics information, Jane (2002); Eze (2008) are of the view that girls develop better attitude to language and communication and in essay writing in particular and this leads to better achievement.

          With the above discussion, there is no doubt that there is poor performance of students in English language especially in the aspect of essay writing generally and Ebonyi state is not an exception. This is traced to poor method of teaching. This has also given rise to debate on the right method to be used. A method that will enable the students to acquire and imbibe proper skills in essay writing .A method that will be students and activity-based and will remedy the conventional teaching method. That is why the researcher has raised the collaborative strategy as a possible remedy.

          These methods is innovative and learner based to equip students with effective writing  skills that will make them become better writers. It will also help the students to move from known to unknown while the students contribute, the teacher modifies and moderate.

          According to Cohen (1986), collaborative method enables the students to dialogue and examine different perspectives that make students to dialogue and examine different perspectives that make students become knowledgeable, strategic, self determined and emphatic. This takes care of large collaborative learning classes in a situation where there are insufficient number of teachers. In collaborative class, students are divided into smaller groups while the teacher encourages active participation and healthy interaction among students.

          Since there is a saying that “two good heads are better than one”, collaborative method have a good advantage over the traditional method. It focuses on collective knowledge and things of the group and encourages students-students and teacher-student interaction, thus making student more relaxed and the task more real. No wonder, Akinsola (2007) points out that students learn faster when the teaching is skewed toward them and that is when they are allowed to participate and make contribution.

          This strategy would enable students not only to perform better in English language but for general academic success.        Collaborative technique is actually derived from a broad term of communicative language teaching (collaborative learning) approach. The communicative language teaching is an umbrella term used for a variety of approaches involving joint intellectual effort by students, or students and teachers together. The collaborative technique is under the heading of collaborative learning approach because this technique absorbs the characteristics of the approach.

          In this technique, students usually work in groups of two or more, mutually searching for understanding, solutions or meanings or creating a product (Smith & MacGregor, 2008); collaborative which refers to writing or other projects (Glencoe, 2011) and it is an essential component of contextual teaching and learning (Tolinson, 2010). Nunan (2012) terms collaboration as constructive and shared understanding in a second language classroom. The students in the collaborative conditions are significantly more pleased with their writing than other subjects where they worked independently. In this case, can collaborative technique be a solution in motivating students in essay writing process as well as improving their writing proficiency in the use of English language. It also helps them to work in pairs to produce co-authored paragraphs and well thought out written essays.

          Another treatment level in this study is the lecture method. The philosophy behind a lecture method is that the knowledge the teacher has can be passed on to students. A lecture method resembles a demonstration method in the sense that a great number of points can be covered within a short time, and students tend to be passive listeners while the teacher does the talking (Agwu, 2002). This may explain why the method has been criticized as a teacher-centred method. One advantage, however of the lecture method is that it can be presented to a large audience. This method will be used as the control treatment in this study.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

          Poor performance of Nigerian students in English Language in Senior School Certificate Examination has generally remained unchanged. It has raised a lot of eyebrow on education as confirmed by WAEC Examiners Reports (2009-2013). This problem could be traced to poor knowledge and lack of progress in written essay, weighing the importance of English language in total academic success. The poor knowledge could be attributed to the use of old methods of teaching written essay as Morris (2009) suggests that there are usually four main causes for lack of progress in essay writing in a second language situation; namely, inadequate preparation for the writing, having to write without collaborative learning purpose, not having the right kind of help to show exactly how to improve the writing, and being given unsuitable subjects to write. These therefore make student to write poor/bad essay through the use of poor instructional strategy.

Judging from the importance of English language in Nigerian, the problem of the present study was to find out if collaborative instructional strategy would be more facilitating for students than the lecture method in written essay.

1.3 Purpose of the Study

          The general purpose of this study was to determine the effects of collaborative instructional strategy on the achievement of students in written essay. Specifically, the study intend to determine the;

i.        effect of collaborative instructional strategy on senior secondary school students achievement in written essay.

ii.       effect of collaborative instructional strategy and lecture method on the achievement of male and female student in written essay

iii.      interaction effect of collaborative instructional strategy to lecture method and gender on senior secondary school students’ achievement in written essay

1.4 Significance of the Study

          The results of this research will be important to different groups of people: students, teachers, textbook writers, researchers, curriculum planners and academic institution in our society in the following ways:      

          It will help the students make the problems they encounter in written essay a thing of the past. This is because when the right method is used in teaching the students essay writing, it will arouse the interest of students in writing essay and it is what you think and write on your own on like the old method which dwells more in coping. It will also create a good relationship among students and with their teachers thus create a good environment for teaching and learning process.  

          The findings of this research will help the teachers of English language to expose to the students their problem areas and also be in a better position to know the best instructional strategy for best result. This work will also expose the advantages of collaborative method over conventional method. Teacher in contact with this work will surely drop the old method and adopt this method to improve the teaching learning process.  This will make teaching and teaching of essay writing to become a fun for him.

This result will be very important to textbook writers developers, as these strategies when applied will not only boost the quality of their output but will also spur the education ministries to recommend such work for use by both students and teachers. This makes essay writing teaching essay for the teacher and the problems students encounter in essay writing a thing of the past.

          The result of this research will also be of much importance to researchers and other scholars because it will expose them to other strategies of writing essay.

          It will also expose various problem areas of the learner to curriculum planners and various syllabuses designers, which will enable them make amends to meet the learners’ abilities.

          This work is relevant to the academic institutions for academic remedial and developmental purpose of English language program in a second language situation.

1.5 Scope of the Study

          This study was delimited to the effects of collaborative strategy on secondary school students’ achievement in written essay. The study was restricted to Abakaliki urban of Abakaliki Education Zone of Ebonyi State. This study also considered variable like gender of students in its execution. The subjects of this study were SS – 2 students.

1.6 Research Questions

          The following research questions were designed to guide the study:

1.       What is the mean achievement of senior secondary school students in written essay when taught with collaborative strategy and when taught with lecture method?

2.       What is the mean achievement of male and female senior secondary school students when taught written essay with collaborative strategy and when taught with lecture method?

3.       What is the interaction effect of the teaching methods and gender on students’ achievement in written essay?

1.7 Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses were tested at 0.05 level of significance:

Ho1:   There is no significant difference in the mean achievement of senior secondary school students in written essay when taught with collaborative strategy and lecture method.

Ho3:   There is no significant difference in the mean achievement of male and female senior secondary school students when taught essay writing with the collaborative strategy and when taught with lecture method.

Ho3:   There is no significant interaction effect of teaching strategies and gender on students’ achievement in written essay.

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Factors Contributing to The Increase in The Problem of Food Crisis in Nigeria

ABSTRACT

Food is the basic necessity of life. With the exception of clothing and shelter, it remains very vital to human existence. In view of this, this study is aimed at investigating the factors contributing to the increase in the problem of food crisis in Nigeria, with Afikpo North as case study. In order to find out the factors contributing to the increase in the problems of food crisis in Nigeria, questionnaires were used to administer to a number of respondents being 182, using convenient/accidental sampling techniques. The questionnaire were divided into sections, A and B, consisting of personal data of the respondents and key research questions respectively. Data analysis was by the use of frequency tables and simple percentages, the finding discovered that a lot of factor contributes to the increase in food crisis which includes land tenure system, increase in birth rate, over dependence on government for survival, neglect of agriculture by youths, to mention but this few. The recommendations redress the fact that newly improved agricultural products to be subsidized by government. Since not all farmers can afford to procure them considering its exorbitant costs, and there should be improvement on the preservative facilities for food in order to drastically reduce food waste in the economy.  

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to the Study

          With the exception of clothing and shelter as the basic necessities of life, food remains the most vital because of its centrality to human existence. It is a known fact that the ruthless expedition for food has shaped human history, provoking wars, driving migration and underpinning the growth of nations. The recent escalation of food prices call for sober reflection, owing to the fact that the globe is facing a worsening food crisis period unseen in the last 20 years and the potential is leading to catastrophe. The discussion of this vital issue has taken a centre stage among world leaders, thereby increasing concerns about the world ability to feed its 6.5 to 7 billion people, to avert world-wide unrest and political instability (Njoku, 2008).

          According to Puchala (2011), despite the efforts, agriculture has been constrained by numerous challenges like rural-urban migration, wavering policies formulation and implementation, insufficient infrastructure support, poor input distribution system; emphasis on oil economy; pricing system, over dependence on rain-fed farming, poor capacity utilization, low investor’s confidence; environmental degradation; poor access to funds, poor socio-economic status of farms and insufficient technological transfer system corruption and poor commitment to implementation of agricultural policies. Besides, the target of the MDG of reducing hunger and poverty, sustainable development can only be attained through increased attention to agriculture, food security and sustainable water resources development, acknowledging the flaws of the past, to reconcile the current global food predicament.

          For Eze (2013), despite the strong growth in food production, sub-saharan Africa is the only region where the number of hungry has risen in the last decade. Analysis are of the view that high food prices will cause an increase in food security and widespread food crisis in many developing countries. Poor people in developing countries spend between 50 – 80 percent of their income on food and poor rural households tend to be net consumers of food. Any increase in food prices reduce food consumption and increase hunger, hence the study.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

          Nigeria is currently experiencing a serious food crisis in its history. The crisis manifests itself in the ability of the nation to produce enough food to feed its population and the need to import food at exorbitant prices. Food shortage and hunger have resulted in the incidence of malnutrition and kwashiorkor among its citizens. Successive government in Nigeria has failed to provide enough food to meet the need of their citizen. Food problems have forced some Nigerian to engage in social vices, which are having a negative impact on the nation. These social vices include ethnic-religion conflicts, armed robbery, prostitution, child trafficking, corruption etc. A hungry man is an easy target for selfish members of the bourgeoisie who would buy their service for a price to foment anarchy within the society. From time immemorial inadequate nutrition has been linked to lawlessness. Hence the study is posit of investigating the factors contributing to the increase in problem of food crisis in Nigeria, with Afikpo North Local Governent Area as focus. 

1.3 Purpose of the Study

          The general objectives of the study are to determine the factors contributing to the increase in the problem of food crisis in Nigeria, with Afikpo North as case study.

While the specific objectives of the study are as follows:

1.       To ascertain the people’s perception of food crisis in the study area.

2.       To find out the causes of food crisis in Afikpo North

3.       To determine the effect of food crisis in Afikpo North

4.       To make possible suggestion as regard the solution to the problem of food crisis

1.4 Significance of the Study

          The significance of the study will be conceptualized into the two broad categories: theoretical significance and practical significance.

          Theoretically, this study is significance in the sense that, it will provide information on documentation on the factors contributing to the problems of the increase in food crisis. This study will also aid the existing body of knowledge. This findings of this work will give a clear picture to any future researcher who may wish to carryout research on the factors contributing to the problems of increase food crisis in Nigeria.

          Practically, this study will be useful to the head of autonomous communities in Afikpo North NGOs, Civil Servants, Politicians and Civil Society, because food is important and essential to human survival.

1.5 Scope of the Study

          This research work is restricted to factors contributing to the problems of the increase in food crisis. It is equally restricted to Afikpo North Metropolis only.

1.6 Research Questions

          The following research questions were formulated to serve as a guide in investigating the factors contributing to the increase in the problem of food crisis in Nigeria, with Afikpo North Metropolis, as case study.

1.       What is the people perception of food crisis in the study area?

2.       What are the causes of food crisis in Afikpo North metropolis?

3.       What are the effects of food crisis in Afikpo North metropolis?

4.       What are the possible solutions to the ongoing food crisis in the study area?

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Error Analysis of Secondary School Students’ Essays in English Language

Error Analysis

Abstract

Error analysis is a technique used in measuring progress by recording, classifying and explaining the errors committed by students in English essays. This involves finding out the types of Errors committed by students, in the aspects of written English essay namely, structures, Lexis, or mechanics which students find most difficult, the possible causes of errors identified, suggestions and remedial measures for improvement. Five research questions and two hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. The population of the study was made up of all SSII, (rural and urban) students in the secondary schools in Enugu Education Zone of Enugu State.  Twelve (12) schools that constituted the sample were randomly drawn, consisting of two hundred and ten (210) rural students and two hundred and ten (210) urban students. Also included were fifty (50) English language teachers randomly drawn from the twelve (12) schools. In each school, thirty-five (35) SS II students were selected through simple random sampling technique, which gave a total of four hundred and twenty (420) students. This was done through balloting with replacement. The first instrument was a written essay test; “A Journey I Made Recently” It was done by all the students and the essay scripts of twelve students were used for error analysis. A mark was assigned to each error. Thus all errors-structural, lexical and mechanical carried one point at each point a particular error occurred. The second instrument was a structured questionnaire containing errors of structures such as errors of concord, errors of noun restrictions, wrong use of articles and wrong use of prepositions, errors of lexis containing wrong  word collocation, wrong grammatical coinage, wrong choice of words and use of meaningless words and errors of mechanics containing wrong spellings, wrong pronunciation and wrong use of capital letters for the fifty (50) English language teachers designed to find out the possible causes of the errors based on structures, lexis and mechanics and their responses formed the data for error analysis. The breakdown of identified errors was used to determine the error frequency of each of the three linguistic skills namely; structures, lexis and mechanics; percentage was used to answer the research questions on errors of structures, lexis and mechanics. Fifty percent (50%) was used as the cut-off. Any item that had 50% and above was regarded as accepted error and any item that had less than 50% was regarded as not accepted; chi-square (x2) was used at the 0.05 level of significance to test the hypotheses on location and gender. Based on the analysis, Ho, and Ho2 were upheld. Mechanical errors were proved to present the greatest difficulty to the students, next were structural errors and last were lexical errors. Based on the findings, the following recommendations were made: English teachers should drill students on spellings and punctuations. Enough English exercises should be given to students daily. English words should be taught in contexts with copious examples and exercises. Finally, seminars should be given to English teachers constantly, which will expose them to modern methodologies and changes in the English language.    

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to the Study

          English language is a second language to many nations colonized by the whites, but has reached a high global position which other languages have not. The history of the English language in Nigeria can be traced back to the colonial era. It was then a language of high status of great importance. It has since then continued to enjoy a very high status within the Nigerian society, fifty five years after independence. As it stands now, it has become an international language. Since it has gained access into all aspects of life including, science, technology, international relations policy-making and administrative records. Widdowso (2000) states that it is practically used in publishing many learning resources globally because of its relevance and equally a subject that appears in the school curriculum in most parts of the world.

          The importance of English language cannot be overemphasized looking at its dominance in Nigeria. Notwithstanding the Nigerian multilingual situation, the English language is one of the core subjects in the secondary school curriculum. The role it plays, in the teaching-learning process in schools right from the primary to tertiary levels makes it very paramount to the academic success of the students .Examinations  are conducted in English, textbooks recommended for students in every subject (except the mother tongue) are all written in English language. Aliyu (2004) in support of the above assertation states that English language enjoys a lot of prestige as a language over and above other Nigeria languages.

          Baldesh (2004) attests that good education should equip its products to communicate adequately, expressing their opinions, emotions, thoughts, attitudes, clearly in an organized manner. Agwu (2002) in his support on the importance of English language comments that our country might not function properly without adequate skill in English language. Still on the importance of English language, Ubahakwe (1979) commends the significant role English language has played in our secondary schools, our society, and has remained the official language for the elite. Kanno, Onwukwe & Maduabum (2002) observe that though, there is a welcome trend in the development of indigenous Nigerian language, English language will remain a functional national language in future. Aliyu (2004) states emphatically that:

English is in effect, the second language of Nigeria, essential for success in the educational process and in others areas of national life. It is not surprising therefore; that so much attention and resources have been and continue to be, devoted to its teaching in Nigeria schools, and it is likely to continue for many years.(P :33)

          Ibe (2010) states that English language is part of student’s environment and therefore should be gripped by students in SSS not only for examination purpose but for total competence in future endeavors. No wonder some scholars having seen the importance of English language in Nigeria attest that it is the lifeblood of the whole educational system and life success in Nigeria as a whole (Afolayan, 1984). Federal Republic of Nigeria (2004) buttresses the importance of English language that virtually all human official activities revolve around   English   language. Therefore, English language is very important to life.

Good teaching of English language more especially in the English as a second language (ESL) environment requires the effective teaching of the complex interrelated skills, listening, speaking, reading and writing. The Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) syllabus clearly  categorized  English language into five; comprehension, lexis and structure, summary, essay and letter writing and oral English of which a good knowledge of  the first three enhance the performance in the essay writing and oral English.

The word essay is derived from the French infinitive essayer meaning “to try” or “to attempt”. In English, essay first meant “a trial” or “an attempt” and still an alternative meaning. The first Frenchman Micheal de montaigne (1533-1592) was the first to describe his work as essays. He used the term to characterize the attempt to put his “thoughts in writing, (Osiamro, 1990).

          Essay is a short piece of writing given to students. It is a part of a course of study in English language (Oxford Advance Learner’s Dictionary, 2005). Agwu and Nweke (2000) assert that the organization and arrangement of ideas in a logical and sequential order to make a complete meaning is called an essay. Thus essay must have a topic or subject matter which is developed in paragraphs with a coherent start or introduction, a well arranged body and a short conclusion. Essay and letter writing skills are very important in the whole language development and learning it is expressing and long lasting than speaking and often less understanding by learners. Essay writing is the ultimate of language skills and determines to a great extent the success of students in both internal and external examinations.

Ghaith (2006) sees essay writing as a complex process that allows writers to explore thoughts and ideas and make them visible and concrete. It is therefore necessary that continuous efforts be made at enhancing the teaching and learning of essay writing among learners of English language. Looking at the importance, writing well is not just an option but a necessity. Otagburuagu (2002) stating the importance of essay writing observes that it has common influence on humanity because it is a common tool of spreading information. However, essay writing is of different types of argumentative, narrative, expository, descriptive and expository.

          Narrative essay is defined in different ways by different people. Oba (2005) defines narrative essay as relating to a number of events or narrating a story and it is used as means of explaining an idea when anecdote is introduced. However, narrative essay is just telling a story which gives account to the reader. In a writers’ point of view, this story telling goes beyond having a beginning, middle and the end but must have a plot which should carry and develop throughout the story. This plot should be filled with major happenings of a story which will together give it a point or them. In a nutshell, narrative is a story writing about a personal experience.  

          Narrative essay provides human interest, trigger our curiosity and bring us close to the storyteller. It provides entertainment, it also provide insights by helping individual to discover values, explore, options and examine motives it link people together by sharing history. Narrative also gives psychological healing. A good narrative must involve reading in the story, arrange events in sequential order, include detailed, observations of people, places and happenings. It should also be told in writers point view. Narrative should be written in first person e.g ‘s’ however third persons, also be used, it relies on concrete, sensory details. It should also include the solving setting, character, climax and ending.

          Descriptive essay is a kind of essay that give the student the chance to desire a person, place, object, emotion experience situation etc. It allows the student to point the picture of what he has in mind in words. It also enable the student to illustrate something with words using the five senses Agwu (2000) states that descriptive essay does not stress on action but particular qualities of characteristic thus for a student to describe, he must be a good observer and can carefully select the detail at what one describing. To write a descriptive essay, one must take time to brainstorm, use clear and concise language, choose vivid language, use your senses, know what you are thinking, leave the reader with a clear impression and be organized.

          According to Obah (2005), he states that exposition means explanation, an “exposing” of information and ideas. Decker in Obaj (2005) states that exposition is non meant to convince or persuade but to explain Obah (2006:225) further defines exposition as its primary function is not to tell a story or relate a happening although exposition often uses narration as on out of many techniques. Its primary function is not to create vivid pictures for the reader although description too may at times be a valuable technique of expositions. The primary function of exposition is not to convince or persuade… but the primary function of exposition itself is merely to explain”.

Looking at the above explanation one can say that expository essay combines the qualities of all the other types of essay. It investigates an idea, evaluate evidence, expound on ideas and also set argument about that idea in clear and concise manner. The aim of an expository essay is to explain a topic analogical and straightforward manner using some words like explain: “define” etc.

          Argumentative essay is a kind of essay that expects the students to investigate a topic, collect, generate and evaluate evidence and establish a position on the topic in a concise manner (Anikam, 1999). A writer is expected in an argumentative essay to defend a position on a topic using evidence from personal experience, literature, historical examples and research to support any point made. According to Anasi (2005) argumentative essay as a passage mainly devotes to arguing out an issue, ideally looking at both sides and lastly coring to a rational and logical conclusion. Basiong (2004) states that argumentative essay aims at persuading the reader to accept the writers point at view.

          Globally, essay writing is a predictor of academic success and a basic requirement for participation in civic life and economy. Secondary school graduates are unable to write good essay at the basic levels required by colleges or employers (Salami, 2007). In addition, every school day, 7,000 young people drop out of high school, many of them because they lack the basic literacy, (Alliance for Excellence Education,(AEE),2001).

Good essay writing skills are required for students to pass at credit level     in the West African School Certificate Examination. Essay writing takes the highest of the total marks, followed by comprehension II, summary, lexis and structure and test of orals respectively in the examination. It is therefore necessary that continuous efforts be made at enhancing the teaching and learning of essay writing skills among students to meet the growing demand of the secondary school curriculum (Kamil, 2003; Snow & Biancorosa, 2003).

          Nigeria is not an exception to the above trend.  In the national curriculum for senior secondary school English, FRN( 2004) states that the curriculum is designed, to achieve a high level of proficiency in the Nigerian students use of English language in preparing students for tertiary and vocational education for the world of work after leaving school. However, this dream cannot come true without achieving competency in the art of writing. Unfortunately, Nigerian students are far below this expectation in mastering the skills of written English. This has generated serious alarm for educators, parents and English teachers in particular.

          Jowitt (2001) states that from the statistics of results published by the West African Examination Council (WAEC) since the end of the Nigerian civil war, there has been constant failure in the performance of students in English language. Banjo (2001) observes that there is general feeling of dissatisfaction with the level of proficiency in English among the products both in secondary and tertiary institutions.

          Based on the separate research findings of Maduabum (2002) and Agwu (2002), there is still poor performance from our students of English in the West African School Certificate Examination and National Examination Council as measured by these bodies, 2009-2013.

Table 1: Shows percentage passes by grades for GCE English O/L (2009-2013)

Year Period Number sat Total: A1-C6 Total: P7-D8 Fail: F9
2009 May/June 45312 29.0 19.0 42.0
  Nov./Dec. 28516 26.0 47.0 27.0
2010 May/June 45115 37.0 28.0 35.0
  Nov./Dec. 32223 33.0 47.0 20.0
2011 May/June 588460 21.06 44.23 34.71
  Nov./Dec. 453377 17.58 73.24 9.18
2012 May/June 632544 13.14 55.82 31.04
  Nov./Dec. 441132 40.06 58.83 1.11
2013 May/June 636113 17.20 42.97 39.83
  Nov./Dec. 396640 47.09 45.12 7.79

   Source: WAEC Headquarters, Lagos (2013)               

          For the period of ten years, as reviewed by Maduabum (2002), there was no year that up to 50% of students who sat for the examination got grades 1-6 which is a prerequisite for higher education.

          In the same vain, Agwu (2002) presented two tables to show the poor performance in English for three years, 2011-2013.

Table 2: Shows a 3-year percentage performance of candidates in English

Subject % Of passes at credit (1-6) % Of failure (F9)
Year 2011 2012 2013 2011 2012 2013
English language 8.47 9.71 10.81 65.33 64.91 64.18

          The two tables show that within the three years of review (2011-2013) there was never a time up to 30% of the candidates who sat for the examination passed at credit level 1-6. One may be forced to ask what could have been the cause of this? Could it be that the strategy used by the teachers in teaching these students is ineffective or the students were not studious? 

          Research outcomes in the area of effective strategies for teaching writing abound, ranging from within and outside Nigeria Obi-Okoye (1991), Lawal (1995) Essex (1996), Janienne 2007, Jibowo (2009) and Morris (2009). Collins and Sommers (1985) were concerned with the development of effective strategies for teaching students how to write good essays. Such strategies has received widespread acceptance by researchers, educators and teachers. Obi Okoye (1991), Durvamaku-Dim and Duruaku-Dim, (2006), and Jibowo (2009) tried out the use of learner’s errors in teaching composition and creative writing. In recent times, the works of Janienne (2007) and Morris (2009) have added more literature in the strategies of teaching essay writing skills. Some teachers use conventional method of teaching in secondary schools which affects students’ performance and attitude. This is because this method is teacher centered and discourages active students’ participation (Otagburuagu, 2002). This does not give students chance to think, form basic concept, plan or even write coherently. In fact, essay writing is an aspect of English language that has been mostly neglected especially in senior secondary schools where under whatever circumstance, it is supposed to be the proper stage to develop and sharpen the skills of writing. According to Otagburuagu (2002), experiences and researchers have shown that writing skills are often the most neglected and the most badly taught by teachers. This also affects the achievement of students in essay writing. The instructional strategy used by a teacher can also influence student’s attitude negatively or positively depending on how it is applied in teaching process. Byrne (1991), Akinbela 2009;  Akende (2002) in support of this state that poor method of teaching leads to students’ poor achievement in English especially in essay writing.

          Educational research findings like physical strength, language and ability shows that gender also plays an important role in students’ achievement. Shaycoff (1999) states that boys seem to acquire significantly more information than girls in such areas as Mathematics, Physical Science, Electricity and Electronics as well as Mechanics while girls’ have significantly higher score gain than boys in interactive, grammar, memory for word, spelling and Home economics information, Jane (2002); Eze (2008) are of the view that girls develop better attitude to language and communication and in essay writing in particular and this leads to better achievement.

          With the above discussion, there is no doubt that there is poor performance of students in English language especially in the aspect of essay writing generally and Ebonyi state is not an exception. This is traced to poor method of teaching. This has also given rise to debate on the right method to be used. A method that will enable the students to acquire and imbibe proper skills in essay writing .A method that will be students and activity-based and will remedy the conventional teaching method. That is why the researcher has raised the collaborative strategy as a possible remedy.

          These methods is innovative and learner based to equip students with effective writing  skills that will make them become better writers. It will also help the students to move from known to unknown while the students contribute, the teacher modifies and moderate.

          According to Cohen (1986), collaborative method enables the students to dialogue and examine different perspectives that make students to dialogue and examine different perspectives that make students become knowledgeable, strategic, self determined and emphatic. This takes care of large collaborative learning classes in a situation where there are insufficient number of teachers. In collaborative class, students are divided into smaller groups while the teacher encourages active participation and healthy interaction among students.

          Since there is a saying that “two good heads are better than one”, collaborative method have a good advantage over the traditional method. It focuses on collective knowledge and things of the group and encourages students-students and teacher-student interaction, thus making student more relaxed and the task more real. No wonder, Akinsola (2007) points out that students learn faster when the teaching is skewed toward them and that is when they are allowed to participate and make contribution.

          This strategy would enable students not only to perform better in English language but for general academic success.        Collaborative technique is actually derived from a broad term of communicative language teaching (collaborative learning) approach. The communicative language teaching is an umbrella term used for a variety of approaches involving joint intellectual effort by students, or students and teachers together. The collaborative technique is under the heading of collaborative learning approach because this technique absorbs the characteristics of the approach.

          In this technique, students usually work in groups of two or more, mutually searching for understanding, solutions or meanings or creating a product (Smith & MacGregor, 2008); collaborative which refers to writing or other projects (Glencoe, 2011) and it is an essential component of contextual teaching and learning (Tolinson, 2010). Nunan (2012) terms collaboration as constructive and shared understanding in a second language classroom. The students in the collaborative conditions are significantly more pleased with their writing than other subjects where they worked independently. In this case, can collaborative technique be a solution in motivating students in essay writing process as well as improving their writing proficiency in the use of English language. It also helps them to work in pairs to produce co-authored paragraphs and well thought out written essays.

          Another treatment level in this study is the lecture method. The philosophy behind a lecture method is that the knowledge the teacher has can be passed on to students. A lecture method resembles a demonstration method in the sense that a great number of points can be covered within a short time, and students tend to be passive listeners while the teacher does the talking (Agwu, 2002). This may explain why the method has been criticized as a teacher-centred method. One advantage, however of the lecture method is that it can be presented to a large audience. This method will be used as the control treatment in this study.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

          Poor performance of Nigerian students in English Language in Senior School Certificate Examination has generally remained unchanged. It has raised a lot of eyebrow on education as confirmed by WAEC Examiners Reports (2009-2013). This problem could be traced to poor knowledge and lack of progress in written essay, weighing the importance of English language in total academic success. The poor knowledge could be attributed to the use of old methods of teaching written essay as Morris (2009) suggests that there are usually four main causes for lack of progress in essay writing in a second language situation; namely, inadequate preparation for the writing, having to write without collaborative learning purpose, not having the right kind of help to show exactly how to improve the writing, and being given unsuitable subjects to write. These therefore make student to write poor/bad essay through the use of poor instructional strategy.

Judging from the importance of English language in Nigerian, the problem of the present study was to find out if collaborative instructional strategy would be more facilitating for students than the lecture method in written essay.

1.3 Purpose of the Study

          The general purpose of this study was to determine the effects of collaborative instructional strategy on the achievement of students in written essay. Specifically, the study intend to determine the;

i.        effect of collaborative instructional strategy on senior secondary school students achievement in written essay.

ii.       effect of collaborative instructional strategy and lecture method on the achievement of male and female student in written essay

iii.      interaction effect of collaborative instructional strategy to lecture method and gender on senior secondary school students’ achievement in written essay

1.4 Significance of the Study

          The results of this research will be important to different groups of people: students, teachers, textbook writers, researchers, curriculum planners and academic institution in our society in the following ways:      

          It will help the students make the problems they encounter in written essay a thing of the past. This is because when the right method is used in teaching the students essay writing, it will arouse the interest of students in writing essay and it is what you think and write on your own on like the old method which dwells more in coping. It will also create a good relationship among students and with their teachers thus create a good environment for teaching and learning process.  

          The findings of this research will help the teachers of English language to expose to the students their problem areas and also be in a better position to know the best instructional strategy for best result. This work will also expose the advantages of collaborative method over conventional method. Teacher in contact with this work will surely drop the old method and adopt this method to improve the teaching learning process.  This will make teaching and teaching of essay writing to become a fun for him.

This result will be very important to textbook writers developers, as these strategies when applied will not only boost the quality of their output but will also spur the education ministries to recommend such work for use by both students and teachers. This makes essay writing teaching essay for the teacher and the problems students encounter in essay writing a thing of the past.

          The result of this research will also be of much importance to researchers and other scholars because it will expose them to other strategies of writing essay.

          It will also expose various problem areas of the learner to curriculum planners and various syllabuses designers, which will enable them make amends to meet the learners’ abilities.

          This work is relevant to the academic institutions for academic remedial and developmental purpose of English language program in a second language situation.

1.5 Scope of the Study

          This study was delimited to the effects of collaborative strategy on secondary school students’ achievement in written essay. The study was restricted to Abakaliki urban of Abakaliki Education Zone of Ebonyi State. This study also considered variable like gender of students in its execution. The subjects of this study were SS – 2 students.

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Perception and Attitude of Secondary School Students Towards HIV/AIDS

Secondary School Students Towards HIV/AIDS

ABSTRACT

The research was conducted to determine the perception and attitude of students in PrescoSecondary School Abakalikiof Ebonyi State, about HIV/AIDS. Three research questions guided the study. Related literature were reviewed and summarized. Descriptive survey research design was used for the study in order to elicit baseline information in the respondents’ natural settings. It is a research with target population of the secondary school students and they are 200 in number and there was a complete enumeration of such as a sample. A self-developed structured questionnaire consisting of 13 close ended questions was designed and distributed and used for data collection. Validity and reliability of the instrument were ensured. All the 200 copies of questionaire were retrieved and data collected were analyzed using descriptive statistics of frequency distribution tables and charts. Findings from this study showed that 100% of the respondents were aware of HIV/AIDS. 54(27%) of the respondents showed that knowledge about HIV/AIDS is cumbersome while 146(73%) of the respondents did not showed that knowledge about HIV/AIDS is cumbersome. 60% of the respondents testified the awareness of HIV/AIDS campaign and the major factors that hindered good perception and attitude about HIV/AIDS is time constraint while 40% of the respondents testified that the awareness of HIV/AIDS campaign and the major factors that hindered good perception and attitude about HIV/AIDS is ignorance. Finally, the researcher recommends based on the findings that more HIV/AIDS awareness campaign should be organized, Free HIV/AIDS test should be carried out on routine bases.

                            CHAPTER ONE

                                             INTRODUCTION

Background of Study

Secondary school student age in Nigeria are mostly adolescents which characterized by a period of growth and within ages of 12-20 years. It begins at the end of childhood and closes at the beginning of adulthood. It is also a period characterized by functional changes such as self-awareness, exploration and formation of new patterns of behaviour including sexual relationships (Denga, 2002). Adolescents have the right to appropriate information to make decisions and access the means to help them act responsibly. Secondary school children in Nigeria are the victims of circumstances. They are trapped between two cultures, the western culture and the traditional beliefs.  The Igbo tradition does not offer useful information of what reproductive health exist. Sexuality education is only mentioned to them at the point of entry into adulthood, especially at the time of marriage. Even though the adolescents spend the bulk of their growing up at school where sexuality education is offered to them, they still find it difficult to come to terms with the knowledge. Their Christian belief together with the traditional questionnaire does not encourage them to pay attention to any issues that have to do with sexuality. Akpama (2007); Ndama (2003) noted that adolescents are trapped between the western and the traditional culture as is the case with adolescents from Ebonyi State. In this case, access to HIV/AIDS prevention information may not only be the problem, but also understanding and reacting positively to the information given them may also pose a big challenge.

Perception is a process by which an individual selects, organizes and interprets information. Perception can be affected by mental set, attitude, expectation or desire at any given moment, hence an individual can also perceive quite falsely.

Human beings attend to issues according to the perceptual information contained in the issue at stake. Perception in this case occurs as a result of the information that has been interpreted and localized (Omotosho, 2004).

The perception of adolescents towards HIV/AIDS prevention therefore depends on the understanding they are able to deduce from the sensitization handed over to them. Akpama (2007) discovered that adolescents from Cross River State are quite knowledgeable about HIV/AIDS prevention. NGOs and other health authorities have carried HIV/AIDS sensitization to schools and the door steps of the villagers, yet this has not accounted for the much reduction or total eradication. This therefore calls for an indebt search into other variables such as peer group pressure and age through which adolescents perception can be enhanced for positive results.

Attitude on the other hand, is an internal condition which influences human behaviour. It varies according to the importance people attach to issues. Consequently, adolescents attitude towards HIV/AIDS prevention may be guided by the importance attached to it. In Ebonyi State, family attitudes are influenced by the traditions and cultural beliefs. Akpama (2007) discovered that what adolescents know and feel about HIV/AIDS prevention does not compliment their attitude towards HIV/AIDS prevention. They think that since family attitudes are influenced by their cultural and traditional beliefs, the focus of NGOs should be on total behaviour change as enshrined in the customs and traditions of the people of Ebonyi State.

HIV/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) epidemic among adolescents is largely ignored and remains invisible to both adolescents themselves and to society as a whole so that the adolescents are more likely to carry the virus for years without knowing that they are infected. Consequently, the epidemic spreads beyond high risk groups to the broader population due to which HIV/AIDS control programs become harder to succeed. Current data indicates that about 20% of adolescents in Africa, whose age range from 15 up to 19 years (mainly secondary school students), are infected with HIV virus (Majelantleet al., 2014).

A study which was done in Nigerian adolescents in 2011 revealed that about 43% of adolescents have had sex by the age of 15 and nearly 70% of sexual activity among them was unprotected (Oshiet al., 2012). In the same study, over one-third of boys and young men had slept with two or more partners in the previous three month. Additionally, the study revealed that about 90% of adolescents were unable to name all three principal way of avoiding HIV. Only 35% of them who knew that condom is protective used it one last time during sex as compared with 19% of those who did not know. Over one-third of them did not know where to buy condoms. Only 9% of them thought they were at high risk of contracting HIV; however, majority of the adolescents (86%) did not think they were at significant risk, either because they explicitly thought they were safe or else they do not know about HIV/AIDS. Out of 70% of adolescents, who would like to have an HIV test, only 6% have had done the test.

Statement of the problem

Tan et al., (2011), indicated that still more work remain on awareness and behavioral changes among the most vulnerable section of the society, the adolescents. This was due to the fact that the number of adolescents who become infected with HIV was significantly increasing which accounts more than 50% of new HIV infection at global level as compared to other segments of risky population groups.

It is very important to investigate the factors responsible for secondary school students’ perception and non challant attitude towards this dreaded pandemic which need to be addressed. This study aimed at investigate thethat determine the perceptionand attitude of adolescent students towards HIV/AIDS prevention. .

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of the study was to examine the perception and attitudes about HIV/AIDS among students of Presco secondary School, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State.

Objectives of the Study

  1. To assess the awareness of the students of Presco secondary School, Abakaliki about HIV/AIDS.
  2. To determine the attitude of students of Presco secondary school toward HIV/AIDS.
  3. To determine the knowledge of  preventive measures of HIV/AIDS by students of Presco secondary school Abakaliki.

Research Questions

1. What is the awareness of studentsof Presco Secondary School Abakaliki about HIV?

2. What is the attitude of studentsof Presco Secondary School Abakaliki about HIV?

3. What is the knowledge of studentsof Presco Secondary School Abakaliki about HIV?

Significance of the Study

  1. It is anticipated that the findings of this study will give the nurse knowledge on the factors influencing perception and attitude about HIV/AIDS among Presco Secondary School Students.
  2. It will help the nurse adopt ways of assisting students utilize maximally the available counselling and education services about HIV/AIDS.
  3. It will help the government to know where necessary to assist students utilize effectively counselling and education services about HIV/AIDS available thereby reducing transmission rate.

Scope of the Study

The study is delimited to the awareness and views of perception and attitude of students about HIV/AIDS as well as ascertaining the factors influencing the perception and attitudes about HIV/AIDS delimited to selected students ofPresco Secondary School Abakaliki.

Operational definition of terms

HIV/AIDS:Human Immunodeficiency Virus and acquired Immunodeficiency syndrome.

Awareness of HIV:is the ability to directly know and perceive the cognizant of HIV/AIDS

Knowledge of HIV:is the information and understanding about HIV/AIDS.

Preventive Measures of HIV/AIDS:consists of ways/methods taken to for HIV/AIDS.

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Strategies for Effective Teaching Of Biology In Secondary Schools

Effective teaching of biology: Abstract

This research work focused on strategies for effective teaching of biology in secondary schools in Onicha Local Government Area of Ebony State. The main purpose of this study was to investigate strategies for effective teaching of biology in Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State. Specifically, the study aimed at: Determining if suitable teaching methods would be effective for teaching biology, ascertaining if the use of instructional materials would be effective for teaching biology, determining if the involvement of qualified teachers would be effective for teaching biology, ascertaining if the use of appropriate textbooks would be effective for teaching biology. The study adopted a descriptive survey research design. 30 respondents made up of teachers of secondary schools in Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State made up the study. Data were collected through the use of a structured questionnaire and were analyzed with mean and standard deviation, the result showed that use of suitable teaching method, use of instructional materials for teaching, an involvement of qualified teachers, and use of appropriate textbooks are strategies that can be adopted for effective teaching of biology. Based on these findings, Conclusion, Recommendations, Suggestions for further study were all pointed out.     

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the Study

          Science generally is the study of the natural things around us. Biology is a branch of science that involves the study of living things; it is a fascinating study that ranges from microscopic cellular molecules to the biosphere encompassing the earth’s surface and its living organism. Students of biology are made to be aware of possible career opportunities that are open to them. Those interested in pursuing a biology related career will find out that it is not only of great benefit and use to the country but also highly satisfying and beneficial personally (Ozor, 2003).

          The subject is expected to be taught in a lively activity; for example, agriculture as a subtopic in biology will actually help the student in practicing production of foods for themselves and the immediate community. The new knowledge which scientists obtained by investigation is added to the existing body of knowledge (Ndu, 2014). Man’s whole struggle in life is for survival, man is all the time attempting to control his environment for his maximum benefit. Man has used science and technology (the application of science) for the benefit of man to improve the quality of life.

          Since 2000, study after study has made it clear that there is an alarming crisis in relation to students’ interest in science either as a possible future career or as an intrinsic interest that will continue after school (Fensham, 2008). Dainton (2004) examined the flow of candidates in science and technology into higher education and documented a swing from biology in the school age population as a whole to other courses showing a decline in the population of biology students. This also is an indication of lack of interest by students in biology.

          The list of countries experiencing declining interest of students in biology is on the increase particularly among the developing countries (Fensham, 2008). One factor which has contributed to low interest in biology by students is the method adopted for teaching and learning of biology. Fensham in Igwe (2006) listed three views of students which contribute directly to low interest in biology, namely:

i.        Biology teaching is predominantly transmissive

ii.       The content of school biology has an abstractness that makes it irrelevant

iii.      Learning biology is relatively difficult for both successfully and unsuccessful students.

          Consequently, the Federal Republic of Nigeria (FRN, 2004) stated that biology should be taught at the secondary level so as to make the students acquire meaningful and relevant body of knowledge, the ability to apply biology knowledge to everyday’s life, laboratory and field skills in biology and to have scientific attitudes that are pragmatic and environmentally conscious. It also makes the students to acquire skills and principles  that give rise to easy application of this subject matter.

          The biology curriculum for secondary schools recommends that in order to teach the practical and theory successfully, adequate number of professionally qualified teachers must be employed. Practical work is part of the study of biology and this should go hand with theory.  It involves field study, collection of specimens, drawing diagrams and experimentation. To make this practical teaching effective, there should be adequate supply of equipment and regular supply of instruments, such as charts, real specimen, there must be sufficient flow of fund, material resources, organizing biology field trips, film shows and invitation of guest lecture.

          Teaching has been defined in various ways. Generally it can be seen as guiding the students to select, use, produce or create information. Many approaches have introduced to teaching of biology so as to make the student more interested and improve their performance by appropriate methods.

          However, this is yet to reflect in the school certificate examination results. The discovery method of teaching was preferred in the teaching of biology because this affords students opportunity to learn and find answers themselves (Gabriel and Tunde, 2008).

          The manpower needs of Nigeria in the area of biology are high, yet majority of the secondary school students have declining interest in the subject as a career. The passes in biology remain low compared to other science subject. Research has been carried out in various ways to improve the level of student’s performance and it has shown many causal factors of poor performance of students in biology among which include the teaching strategies adopted and it appears to be paramount.

          A teacher’s method of instruction use of materials and planning can all affect a student’s success. To become an effective teacher of biology, a teacher should use a variety of methods to make the biology curriculum accessible to students of different cognitive levels and learning styles. Teachers should continually evaluate the effectiveness of their chosen methods by measuring students’ process (Igwe, 2003). Some important  topics like Kreb’s circle, the circulation of blood due to their complexity are being avoided by some teachers while some show non-challant attitude towards the practical aspect the large chunk of the mark, and this can lead to student’s poor performance in public examinations.

          Cole (2005) asserted that the existing science methods show little or no concern for the subject matter and method which would stimulate interest and make effective the training of manpower for essential biology profession.

          Izegwire (2000) further suggested role playing, projects and workshops. Akinpelu (2003) added that for teaching and learning of any subject to be effective and time efficient, teaching strategies (method, means and media) should be employed. The above situation if allowed to continue would lead to continuous poor performance. The researcher has therefore packaged this study on strategies for effective teaching of biology in Onicha Local Government of Area of Ebonyi State. This researcher is concerned that the above conditions could lead to continuous poor achievement in public examinations. Hence, the problem of this study in question form is; what are the strategies that could enhance to teaching of biology in senior secondary schools in Onicha Local Government Area in Ebonyi State?

Statement of the Problem

          The teaching of biology should be geared towards making man see himself as a living things and the more he knows about life and living things in general, the better we can understand our own bodies and how they work in health and disease. This is why the study of biology is considered essential in education. It finds application in medicine, public health animal husbandry, agriculture, horticulture, pest control and other related fields.  

          However, close looks at some of the secondary schools in Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State show that they have a number of problems. For instance, almost all the secondary schools in Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State lack a biology laboratory, qualified biology teachers, availability of textbooks, instructional materials and use of innovative teaching strategies.

          When students are taught biology in the senior secondary schools only theoretically without the practical aspect, due to the above conditions of the schools, the teaching of biology will not be done effectively and also when a teacher cannot use varieties of methods in teaching biology then biology teaching cannot be done effectively.

Purpose of the Study

          The main purpose of the study was to investigate into strategies for effective teaching of biology in Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State. Specifically, the study aimed at:

1.       determining if the use of suitable teaching methods would be effective for teaching biology.

2.       ascertaining if the use of instructional materials would be effective for teaching biology.

3.       determining if the involvement of qualified teachers would be effective for teaching biology

4.       ascertaining if the use of appropriate textbooks would be effective for teaching biology.

Significance of the Study

          The results of this study would be of immense benefit to education stakeholders: teachers, students, school management, curriculum planners, government and future researchers.

          The result will be beneficial to biology teachers. This study will serve as a guiding instrument for biology teachers in their effort to achieve healthy and qualitative education in effective strategies of teaching biology. It is hoped to provide a mirror for future initiation and implementation of school curriculum with the sole aim of saving the nation from the danger of educational backwardness. This result will provide modalities for teachers to practicalize biology for effective understanding of the subject.

          The result of this study will be of importance to students. This is because it would help the students to know some strategies they could apply while learning biology. It would also help to know the materials they could provide such as textbooks and instructional materials for learning biology.

          The result of this study will be of importance to the government, this is because by this results government will realize the need to provide more fund for purchasing of

instructional materials, textbooks for students and recruit qualified biology teachers for the schools. Government also can through its agency on curriculum review to recommend appropriate teaching methods to the teachers.

          The result of this study will be of importance to the school management. This is because; by this result the school management would know the appropriate strategies for teaching biology and enforce it for instructional delivery even for other subject area.

          The result of this study will be of importance to the curriculum planners. This is because the result would have revealed areas of weakness in secondary school biology curriculum as it concerns strategies for effective teaching of biology. From this, there would call for a review of the curriculum to accommodate this strategies.

          The result would be beneficial to future researchers. This is because it would serve as a ready material for their own research work as the availability of this results will make the library of knowledge richer for biology teaching.

Scope of the Study

          This study is delimited to the strategies for effective teaching of biology in the secondary schools in Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State. This study will make use of biology teachers.

Research Questions

The following research questions were formulated to guide the study:

1.       How would the use of suitable teaching method as a strategy be effective for teaching biology?

2.       How would the use of instructional material be a strategy for effective teaching of biology?

3.       How would the involvement of qualified teachers be a strategy for effective teaching of biology?

4.       How would the use of appropriate textbooks as a strategy be effective for teaching biology?

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Problems of Learning Chemistry in Secondary Schools

Problems of Learning Chemistry in Secondary Schools in Abakaliki Local Government Area of Ebonyi State

Abstract

This study investigated the problems of learning chemistry in secondary school in Abakaliki local government area of Ebonyi State. The study adopted a descriptive  survery design. Structured questionnaire was administered to one hundred (100) respondents, from five (5) secondary schools in Abakaliki Local Government Area which were selected by simple random sampling technique. Five research questions and two null hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. The instrument used in collecting data was a Read More »

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Nursing project Topics and Materials that will Thrill Your Supervisor

Nursing project Topics and Materials that will Thrill Your Supervisor- Great news to all nursing students that will be writing their projects this year. This is simple but complicated project topics and their materials. You can’t afford to miss these. We have over 7,000 projects topics and materials for nursing science students, but have selected these 1110 most interesting ones that suite your need, with modern approach and will only be available to the first 1110 students as we don’t encourage plagiarism.

However in this “Nursing project Topics and Materials that will Thrill Your Supervisor”, we have taking time to interview some of the supervisors and lecturers on what they really need students to write in order to score high. Now we have those secrets, we have decided to share them with you. Don’t miss this great opportunity for you know that a trial will convince you.

Nursing Science Project topics and materials

Nursing Science Project topics and materials

Nursing Sciences projects

Nursing projects:

Nursing basically comprises of the protection as well as promotion, health optimization, it also include prevention of injury and illness, also to facilitate healing. Nursing also alleviate suffering by diagnosing, treating and caring individuals, groups, families, communities as well as the total populations.

Nursing projects

Uniprojectsearch has quality project topics and materials in all departments. Below are quality project topics and materials in nursing sciences. Click on each to view

  1. The Prevalence and Causes of Maternal Mortality in Federal Teaching Hospital
  2. The Prevalence of Urinary Tract Infection among Pregnant Women Who Attended Antenatal Clinic at Federal Teaching Hospital
  3. Family Case Study Cholera Disease Patient
  4. Domestic Approach towards Convulsion among Mothers with One or More Children in Ngbo of Ohuakwu Local Government Area of Ebonyi State Read More »
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