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It is disheartening to say that until recently, Introductory Technology Education was not paid attention to by the introducers and the acquirers. Many people had different notions that introductory technology education is of no and therefore was not given recognition.
Virtually today, introductory Technology has attracted National interest because it is the basis for the technological development of every nation. It was on this background that the researcher unraveled the factors militating against the performance of the students in Introductory Technology in Junior Secondary School level in Nigeria, a case study of Calabar, Cross River State. In the course of the research work, twenty one Introductory Technology teachers were randomly sampled. the work was guided by research questions, monitored and information gathered was analyzed.
Based on the research findings, it was discovered that absence of training facilities, shortage of technical teachers, inadequate finding, vast curriculum and poor recognition and remuneration as well as ineffective guardian and counseling services are identified as the most endemic problems militating against the performance of students in introductory Technology.
Thereafter, conclusion and recommendations were provided for the problems.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Education is the panacea for technological advancement of any nation. The progress of any nation depends largely on the technological know - how of that country. It was in realization of the fact that only technological education can emancipate us from the western economic and technological slavery, that the National Policy on Education (1977), revised (1981) recommended expand technical institutions in the country. In 1979, all secondary schools in the country were required to offer Introductory Technology along side other subjects as one of the compulsion subjects at the Junior Secondary School Level.
It has been observed that the curriculum of our schools before the introduction of the 6-3-3-4 system was too academic, theoretically oriented and failed to address the needs and aspirations of the Nation. The system turned out job seekers instead of job creators. The search for a functional curriculum, which will address the needs and yearning of the nation, led to the emergence of the 6- 3- 3-4 system in 1982. The curriculum contains among other things pre-vocational subjects, which included introductory technology; Home Economics and Business Education, which are compulsory at the Junior Secondary Schools.
Introductory technology as an integrated subject included- woodwork, metal work, basic electricity /electronics, building construction, technical drawing, plastic and rubber technology, and auto/ mechanical work. Introductory technology lays the foundation for the acquisition of skills and knowledge that are basic for technological development. The skills and knowledge acquired at the this level will equip the students to be self reliant if they are unable to study beyond the Junior Secondary School Level.
According to Nnadi (1988) “The new system would ensure that the basic foundation is laid easily for the acquisition and utilization of knowledge and skill on which the technological programme the country would continue to depend”. It is intended that the programme would launch Nigeria into the technological new world order.
It is sad to mention that resources are grossly inadequate for the teaching of this important subject in our schools, especially schools in Calabar, Cross River State where, in some places, buildings to house the equipment / machines do not exist, while in some places there and building, equipment and machines but no electricity and workshop exist there by making it difficult for the equipment / machines to be installed.
It is not only the material resources that are in short supply but also human resources and ideologies.
Adigin (1974 :137) indicated that “evidence, abounds to show that the supply of introductory technology teachers is grossly inadequate both in number and quality. Although the literature has shown that there is acute shortage of resources for the teaching of the subject, in other places, it is equally important to ascertain the extent of the factors militating against the performance of students in introductory technology in Cross River State, basically in Calabar Municipal Council Area of the state.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
After graduation of students studying Introductory Technology from the Junior Secondary School Level of Education, they hardly exhibit simple technological skills; hence they fail in most of the challenges they face while in the labour market. With the lack of knowledge of tools and poor standard workshop arrangement, lack of competent instructor, poor guidance and counseling an vast curriculum, all result to some of the factors militating against the performance of students in Introductory Technology in the Junior Secondary School Level.
The questions addressed are as follows:
1. What effects does the curriculum has on the performance of the students in Introductory Technology?
2. What effects does the available resources for the teaching of introductory technology has on the students?
3. What effects does the motivation of technical teachers have on the performance of students in Introductory Technology?
4. What effects does effective guidance and counseling has on the performance of Introductory Technology Students?
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The purpose of the study is to investigate the factors militating against the performance of students in introductory technology at the Junior secondary school level in Calabar Municipal Council Area of Cross River State precisely, the study tend to:
I. Determine the factors responsible for the poor performance of students in Introductory Technology.
II. Assess the condition of services of technical teachers.
III. Address the need for students’ guidance and counseling in schools.
IV. Assess the effectiveness and efficiency of introductory technology teachers.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The investigations of the study will enable education policy markers in Government, administrators of schools, classroom teachers, industries and the society at large to be aware of the problem of students poor performance introductory technology in the Junior Secondary school level of education, which if not tackled with care can hinder move towards the country’s technological advancement.
The outcome of the study will help technological teachers to adjust and correct their lapses and improve on them efforts made so far for better performance.
Most importantly, students will benefit from the results of this study immensely, in that they will seek proper counseling for purposeful progress in their respective career choice in life.
Finally, the result of this study will be of immense benefit to practicing technical education teachers to be.
1.5 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. Do teachers really cover the introductory technology scheme of work?
2. What are the available resources for the teaching / learning of introductory technology in Nigeria secondary schools?
3. What is the rate of utilization of the resources in the teaching /learning of introductory technology for national development?
4. What efforts are being made by school administrators and the Government to encourage technical teachers for effective participation in Nigeria School?
5. What are the effects and relevance of guidance and counseling in Nigeria secondary schools for technological development?
The work of this study was confirmed to Twelve(12) Secondary Schools in Calabar Municipal Area of Cross River State.
Out of the twelve schools, three are private schools and Nine are government owned secondary schools.
The researcher was faced with some human, financial and physical problems such as time, finance and disappointing confrontations; hence he could not cover all the parts of the states in the study.
1.8 ASSUMPTIONS OF THE STUDY
With genuine attestation to this study, it was assured that:
I. The respondents’ information gathered are authentic and genuine.
II. The teachers used in the study are ideal respondents.
III. The data analysis computation is correct.
IV. The population sample used is large enough to be a representative of the total population with respect to the limited time involved.
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