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Background of the study

In the year 2007, the Universal Basic Education scheme introduced in Nigeria Kano state inclusive, basic technology to replace introductory technology, with a desire to achieve what could not be realized through introductory technology. Same teachers of introductory technology and other workshop staff are used to implement basic technology. Workshops used for introductory technology are still being used for basic technology. In the junior secondary curriculum basic technology includes a broad range of fields of study and subjects such as auto mechanics, applied electricity, building, ceramics, metal work, woodwork, plastics, rubber, food preservation, storage, technical drawing and other miscellaneous topics. The basic technology course is meant to provide a holistic view of Basic Technology Textbooks in Nigerian Secondary Schools: A Quality and Content Analysis technology to students. The subject guidelines and contents have been carefully structured into a teaching sequence, which consists of clear explanations and descriptions of how results are obtained by using different tools, machines and materials. Basic technology is also a skill development course, which aims at providing students with technical literacy for everyday life. According to Nigeria’s Federal core curriculum, the objectives of basic technology are to:

(i) provide pre-vocational orientation for further training in technology;

(ii) provide basic technological literacy for everyday living; and

(iii) stimulate creativity.

Basic technology at this level is also meant to provide basic knowledge about industrial technology. It is designed to develop in students an appreciation of technology and an interest in specific areas of industrial technology. On completion of junior secondary school, according to FGN (2004), students are streamed into:

(i) senior secondary school;

(ii) technical college;

(iii) an out-of-school vocational training center; and

(iv) an apprenticeship scheme.

This is based on results from the Junior Secondary School Certificate Examination (JSSCE), whose purpose is to determine their academic ability, aptitude and vocational interests.

The curriculum used to teach the subject of ‘Basic Technology’ was developed by various subject specialists. For instance, those who studied electrical and electronics were asked to write chapters or textbooks related to the subject, those who studied architecture and building focused on related subjects, and those who studied engineering were asked to contribute to engineering related subjects. Most are controlled by Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC).

The educational system introduced by the missionary in Nigeria brought a new life of educational development into the country. The curriculum was intensely denominational shallow in content and religiously based.

This is led to the (1882) education ordinance which underwent series of criticisms and later revised by the 1887 ordinance.

The educational system that developed later was such that a child spent eight years in the primary school, and three years in the university, (Onabamiwo 1982). Real learning for understanding and application to the needs of our environment was absent.

With the 1969 curriculum conference the new national policy on education was born. The system which is known as the 6-3-3-4 system is envisaged by the former educational system.

Education is indeed for effective life in a technological society, a wheel base for any developing country clearly, the 6-3-3-4 education system is the greatest mile stone in the history of organized education in Nigeria. It is greatly faced with the problems and prospects, and should be clearly understood and appreciated and there should be adequate planning and implementation.

John Dewey (1930) on the same had stressed a marriage between theoretical and practical knowledge. There should be an inter-locking existence between theory and practice, hence the introduction and implementation of the 6-3-3-4 educational system which caters for the subjects (pre-vocational subject and non-vocational subjects). Education is constantly changing and adapting itself to new demands and new circumstances it therefore has the growing quality of a living organism.

However, any explanation of the rational for the new secondary school system might necessarily touch on the origin and concept of junior and senior secondary school system contrary to the belief of many Nigerians who thought that the junior and senior secondary school concept was a product of Britain our traditional colonial master from whom we borrowed most of our educational practice this system of secondary education is known to have originated from North America which has been practicing this generally given the credit for having started this system in North America in the year 1895. Nwaogwugwu, (1982) it is copied in agreement with the Nigeria culture. The origin of the system apart from the important question relates to whether the desired objectives are being especially at the junior secondary school JSS level. Recently the new national policy on education now known, as the 9-3-4system of education has been under implementation for this year now.

In 1982, the new educational system was established, which consists of 6 years primary, 6 years secondary, and 4 years tertiary. In 1999, compulsory and free basic education was launched in schools by the then President of Nigeria (President Olusegun Obasanjo), which is 9 years duration comprising of 6 years of primary education and  years of junior secondary education.

According to the Education for all (2000), gross primary school enrollment has declined in Nigeria from approximately 86.2 percent in 1993 to 70.3 percent in 1996.

Among the goals of secondary education according to the National Policy on Education (FGN 2004) are to:

(i) provide all primary school leavers with the opportunity for education of a higher level,

(ii) provide trained manpower in the applied science, technology and commerce at sub-professional grades,

(iii) provide technical knowledge and vocational skills necessary for agricultural, industrial, commercial and economic development.

These goals are still valid today. To achieve the goals, the junior secondary education is both pre-vocational and academic, and is meant to be tuition free, universal and compulsory; however, many students apply to technical schools today when they cannot gain admission to non-technical higher institutions. In fact, they have to pay higher schools fees in all higher institutions and the education is not compulsory at that level. It was meant to teach basic subjects such as basic science, mathematics, and English language, which enable students to acquire further knowledge and skills. All students in junior secondary school are expected to take a minimum of ten and maximum of thirteen subjects. Basic technology is one of the core and compulsory subjects offered at junior secondary school level.

The (NPE 1981) introduced basic technology as core subject in junior secondary schools to correct the technological backwardness of our populace that the education of children will be technically orientated. It will also reduced unemployment since basic technology is aim at education for self reliant. The introduction of UBE by federal government of Nigeria in 1999 put more emphasis on technical and science education all level to improve technological in its citizenry.

          Ozara (1995) and Owen’s (1994) stated that for the development of any society. There has to be a solid technical foundation on which the society can build. To live in such society the population most become technical literate” it is for this reason that the basic technology was introduce into Nigeria education.

          Fafunwa (2004) say “Basic technology is the leg of new policy as well as that of our technological hope for a well developed technical education in Nigeria that will prepared young people for self-reliant and skilled man power, it is hoped that the 9-3-4 system of education will provide the most needed answer to the technological problem.

          According Gambo (2000) technology education is designed to equip the individual for entry into occupation that are within the share of skilled craft, engineering and scientific profession associated within the use and application of basic principles of science and technology. (FMEST 1985) state that basic technology is integrated technology in which several specialized technical courses have been identified. Some of the courses include; technical drawing, metal work, wood work, electrical/electronics, rubber, ceramic plastic, building, automobile food presevation and process etc it is also of the four pre-vocational subject expect to be offer at JSS.

Stamen of problem

Lack of standard Basic Technology workshops and other necessary tools and materials are parts of the factors contributing to poor performance of students in Basic Technology in Nigeria according to Ivowi (2000). Many scholars have been emphasizing the problems of non-availability of qualified teachers to teach Basic Technology subjects in Nigeria. However, if there are qualified teachers and there are no standard workshops, no enough equipment and tools to use for practical activities by teachers and students, the whole exercise would be in vain.

The importance prevocational education in the development of an individual in order to contribute to the technological and economic development in Nigeria cannot be over-emphasized. Prevocational education is a type of functional education that lay a solid foundation for the training of future engineers, technologist, business men and women, accountants, and entrepreneurs. There is need for prevocational education to change according to time. Prevocational education have reached a point where the demand for change from outside our institutions are numerous and strong and it is critical that decisions are made on how to respond to these changes (Osinem, 2007). The challenges of prevocational education include poor practical skills among students, decreased funding, and lack of tools, equipment, consumable materials and workshops. Furthermore, there exists a dearth the quantity of vocational teachers to teach these subjects; dearth of prescribed and relevant textbooks and other teaching materials in many of the schools where prevocational education is being taught. To this end, Maguire (2000) opined for changes to make prevocational education interesting since technological development has continued to be a major concern of government. If prevocational education do not produce students who are interested in technical and vocational subjects, the nation stand the risk of producing graduates and school-leavers who will continue to roam the streets seeking for white-collar-jobs instead of those who ought to be self-employed and become employers of labour. The decline in enrolment, low quality of students at entry and higher level and high unemployment among school leavers at present depicts the place of TVE programmes in Nigeria. The dramatic increase in the unemployment rate in Nigeria calls for the need for students to acquire knowledge, and saleable skills for private sector or self-employment which can be achieved through early exposure and interest in prevocational subjects. Therefore the need for this study Method of Improving students interest in basic technology in some selected secondary schools in Kano state.

Purpose of the study

The purpose of this study is to find Methods of Improving students interest in basic technology in some selected secondary schools in Kano state. Specifically the study will find out:

1.     The level of motivation of students to basic technology

2.     The quality and adequacy of basic technology staff

3.     The adequacy of tools, equipment and materials available for practical lessons

Significance of the study

This study is of immense benefit to students, teachers, school authorities and state ministries of education and federal ministry of education. The study will be of immense benefit because it will enhance the interest in learning processes of students and thereby improving on their overall academic performance since it will increase and create awareness on importance of basic technology.

Findings from the study will help to sensitize teachers of their important roles in promoting the use of basic technology. This is because it will provide basis for them to understand the need for their complimentary role in encouraging and stimulating students interest in the course. The finding will further help to reveal and create awareness among the schools authorities on the importance of basic technology and the challenges faced in the teaching and learning process. The study will go far to help the government to prepare a better curriculum which will emphasize more practicals and other related academic work in schools.

The study will also be of benefit to ministries of education of both state and federal government as this will help them to know the problems and consequently enable them to know how to tackle such problems.

Research questions

The following research questions will help guide the study:

1.     What is the level of motivation to practical works?

2.     How adequate and qualified are basic technology teachers?

3.     How adequate and available are tools, equipment and materials for practical lessons

Scope of the study

The study will cover factors responsible for improving students interest in technological aspect and it will be limited to fundamentals of technology in Junior Secondary Schools. 

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