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1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
With the recent development in the accounting field, the traditional face to face teaching is seen as obsolete and hence proposal have been made in terms of ways and process to enhance the quality of education. With the advent of improvement of modern technology prove to be the answer with radical changes in the modern teaching methods (Williams, 1993). In line with the above, Albrecht and Sacks (2000) argue that for the improvement of education in the field of accounting, innovative ways of teaching must be introduced. Moreover, the teaching approaches should be design in a way that they fulfill the requirement of the financial sectors; this will encourage the development of the essential skills and competencies to enable the learners to tackle real life accounting problem in real business environment. As Spathis (2004) stated it is an essential necessity for the learners to take part in the information society since knowledge is a ‘must’ for the social and economic growth of a country. With the advent of ICT’s in the accounting field, this has led to major changes in term of improvement in the structure and function in the education. Petridou & Spathis (2001) and Mohamed & Lashire (2003) claimed that the introduction of new technologies has play a dominant role to put a step forward in from a transition the traditional teaching to a new level of approach in term of E-learning and Distance learning courses, thus proposing a different dimension in the learning approaches which secondary schools have adopted to propose flexibility for students Arukwe (1992) noted that the solutions to Nigerian present economic problems couldn't exclude the intensification of vocational education for the citizenry. Olaferu-Olagbegi (1988), observed that combating unemployment in Nigeria through the creation of self-employment, emphasizes the establishment of small-scale enterprises in rural areas by skilled personnel who are products of vocational education. The possession of the necessary skill in financial record keeping is a priority and accounting process is a solution. The problems facing accounting in Secondary Schools are twofold: the teaching on the one hand and learning on the other hand. The performance of students in the subject in the SSC Examination has not been encouraging. Students are generally deficient in numerate subjects like accounting and mathematics. Fakuade's (1980) report, that pupils had been deficient in simple knowledge, abilities, attitudes and work-habits needed for self-sufficiency (Azikiwe, 1995). It is basically occupation oriented because it is essentially intended to provide skills and manpower for commerce and industry in any nation. Hence Arukwe (1992) noted that the solutions to Nigerian present economic problems couldn't exclude the intensification of vocational education for the citizenry. Olateru-Olagbegi (1988), observed that combating unemployment in Nigeria through the creation of self-employment, emphasizes the establishment of smallscale enterprises in rural areas by skilled personnel who are products of vocational education. The possession of the necessary skill in financial record keeping is a priority and accounting process is a solution. The problems facing accounting in Secondary Schools are twofold: the teaching on the one hand and learning on the - other hand. The performance of students in the subject in the SSC Examination has not been encouraging. Students are generally deficient in numerate subjects like accounting and mathematics. Fakuade's (1980) report, that pupils had been deficient in simple mathematics can also be applied to accounting. The ever-increasing poor performance of students in accounting in secondary and post secondary Schools is a serious concern and unpalatable signal to the development of accountancy (Oloidi 2003a). No doubt the poor performance in accounting can be traced, in part, to the poor methods of teaching the subject. As Agbenta (1981) has pointed out on the need for practical lessons in the physical sciences, it can also be stated that teaching of accounting in secondary school without the use of accounting laboratory for practical lesson, inhibits the study of the subject. Teachers should improve on their teaching methods and processes. While it is not the objective of this paper to be teaching methodologies, it is of utmost necessity that accounting teachers should note that the enduring solutions to these problems are from the teachers. Accounting teacher should be 'efficient, effective and qualitative. Marving, Kinder and Schunert (1977) argued that the effective teacher should have good understanding of the subject he teaches. Lack of good preparation was identified by Clark (1977) as causing poor teaching. On the part of the students, the findings of Ajogbeje (1998) on mathematics can logically be applied. He stressed sex- stereotyping, transfer of poor attitude between peers and from older students, and poor self-concept towards the subject, the influence of the environment on the student, .as affecting learning. The government on its own part needs to provide adequate fund, materials and human resources and necessary motivation of student and teachers (Oloidi, 2003b). Against the foregoing background, it would therefore be very necessary for accounting teachers, the secondary school administrators and the government to take a critical look at the ways of improving the status of accounting as a subject in secondary school. This paper shall identify the problems facing teaching and learning of accounting in secondary schools and proffer far reaching solutions to these problems.
NIGERIAN ACCOUNTING EDUCATION SYSTEM
The training and production of accountants in Nigeria is anchored by both academic institutions and professional accounting bodies. Thus, a clear distinction exists between the professional mode and the academic mode of education, training and professionalization of Nigerian accountants. A professional accounting body, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales pioneered the development of the profession in the country even before independence in 1960. Though the training of the pioneer indigenous accountants was handled locally by the Nigerian affiliates of foreign accounting firms, the examination and certification was carried out by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales. The first indigenous accountant`s certification body – the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) was incorporated in 1965. ICAN enjoyed the monopoly of accounting professionalization for well over two decades but could not rise up to the challenge of bridging the ever widening gap between the national demand for and supply of qualified and certified accountants. Such failure not only encouraged the incursion of other professional accounting bodies but also paved the way for rivalry, and struggle for supremacy (even litigation), between ICAN and other professional accounting bodies (Uche, 2007). The Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN) was incorporated in 1993. Three other professional bodies have since joined the fray namely the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITA), the Chartered Institute of Cost and Management Accountants (CICMA) and the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Nigeria (ICPAN) which was incorporated in 2005. The professional mode of accounting education places emphasis on in-house, on-the-job training based on a programme of internship in approved accounting firms. The academic mode of accounting education prevails in polytechnics and universities. This mode places emphasis on a mix of broad based accounting education incorporating core accounting skills development courses as well as related ancillary courses drawn fro other disciplines in the management sciences. This paper concentrates on university based accounting education delivery in Nigeria. The key issues include the structure and depth of university accounting programmes, the accounting degree curricula, the staffing of accounting departments, the pedagogical approaches adopted in accounting education delivery, the state of teaching and research infrastructure, the issue of funding and strategies for improving the overall quality and relevance of the programme to the current socio-economic needs of the country.
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The concern for accounting as an important aid to vocational education has led to studies identifying the strategies of enhancing effective teaching and learning the subject. Much of the concern centers on the student, the teacher and the government and the effect on the performance of students in the subject. It is obvious that the performances of students in this subject at the SSC Examination are not encouraging (Oloidi 2003a). The questions then arise; what are the problems facing teaching and learning of accounting as a vocational subject in the secondary schools ?
It therefore means that without proper improvement on the gaps facing accounting studies in secondary schools. Secondary school students upon graduation are bound to be completely obsolete in our contemporary society where knowledge of accounting has become a prerequisite for employment, interview and in some cases for promotion. It is on this basis that the researcher deems it necessary to conduct a study on strategies for improving accounting studies in secondary schools which is the foundation of learning accounting.
The major purpose of the study is to determine strategies for improving accounting studies in secondary schools . The study specifically sought to determine:
1. To find out funding strategies for improving the teaching of accounting in secondary school.
2. To find out strategies for improving the availability and quality of instructional facilities required for the teaching of accounting in secondary school.
3. To find out strategies for improving teaching methodology required for the teaching of accounting in secondary school.
4. To find out strategies for improving the availability and quality of human resources required for the teaching of accounting in secondary school.
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This study will be useful to policy makers. Being aware of the changing and challenging world of accounting, they will be able to produce curriculum that will stand the test of time. The findings of this study will help them follow suit and form a body that will regulate, monitor, evaluate and verify progress on the use of the existing curriculum, since current curriculum is obsolete and needs to be updated within the dynamic world of accounting.
The result of this finding will serve as a guide when allocating funds for the purchase of basic instructional facilities that will be used by teachers for teaching of accounting. It will also serve as a guide when providing funds for retraining serving teachers in IT techniques and instructional methods. This training should also be made open also to private schools to ensure uniform standards.
The findings of this study will not only alert but serve as a source of data to the current trends, also add to the volume of literature available in schools and as a reference for future research for improving the teaching of accounting in secondary school to the federal government. It is hoped that the recommendations of this study will be of help to designated College of Education and Universities so that they will see the current problems in terms of shortage of computer teachers and teach both theoretical and practical courses or programs with the view that within few years, qualified accounting teachers will be available to schools.
1. What are the funding strategies required for the teaching of accounting in secondary schools?
2. What are the strategies for improving the availability and quality of instructional facilities required for the teaching of accounting in secondary schools?
3. What are the strategies for improving teaching methodologies required for the teaching of accounting in secondary schools?
4. What are the strategies for improving the supply and quality of human resources required for the teaching accounting in secondary schools?
Four null hypotheses were formulated to guide the study and will be tested at 0.05 level of significance.
H01: There is no significant difference (p < 0.05) in the mean response of principal,
vice-principal and teachers on the strategies for improving the funding strategies required for the teaching of accounting in secondary school.
H02: There is no significant difference (p < 0.05) in the mean responses of principal,
vice-principal and teachers on the strategies for improving the availability and quality of instructional facilities required for the teaching of accounting in secondary schools.
H03: There is no significant difference (p < 0.05) in the mean responses of principal,
vice-principal and teachers on the strategies for improving teaching methodologies required for the teaching of accounting in secondary schools.
H04: There is no significant difference (p < 0.05) in the mean responses of principal,
vice-Principal and teachers on the strategies for improving the availability and quality of human resources required for teaching of accounting in sec school.
DELIMITATION OF THE STUDY
It is delimited to principals, vice-principals and teachers in secondary schools where accounting are offered as a subject in Aniocha and Oshimili Local Government Areas, in Delta State
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