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1.1 Background of the study
Television is an important medium of communication in the 21st century. It is used for several reasons including information, education, entertainment, and persuasion. Unlike other media structures, television has the advantage of utilizing vision for mass communication. Programming remains a key instrument for attracting audience and determining the viability of a station. The influence of the media on the psychological development of the child is profound. It has become something of a cliché to observe that despite many decades of research and hundreds of studies, the connection between people’s consumption of the mass media and their subsequent behaviour has remained elusive. The television is a system of communication where the image of the scene can be transmitted and produced to another place without the viewer having any problem in recording the information. It is the transmission of information accompanied with sound. According to Mowers (2006) in 1927, congress introduced the US broadcasting system to “help to serve the publics’ interest”. The television set has two main purposes, one is to provide a voice for those communities who haven’t been heard, and the other is to increase the understanding of the world. In Nigeria, television stated in Ibadan in 1959, it was called western Nigerian television (WNTV) now Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) Ibadan, the Benue Plateau television now NTA Jos in 1974 was the first television station to transmit coloured pictures to the homes of Nigerian (NBC 2009). Today, almost every state capital has at least one television station. In 1993, licences were issued for the transmission of cable signals to many homes in Nigeria (NBC, 2006). In Rivers State, NTA Port Harcourt was the first station to commence transmission of signals. Over the years, other stations e.g. Rivers State Television (RSTV), Africa Independent Television (AIT) and most recently cable networks Multichoice Nigeria (DSTV), communication Trends limited (CTL), Cable Mission television (CMTV) amongst others. These cable networks provide 24 hours of programming. It is a socializing agent as information transmitted can easily affect consumers’ worldview, perception and behaviour. It exposes people to opinions that challenge traditional ethos. Television has thus become a major source of information acquisition, companionship and a relaxation tool as it provides millions with free leisure strategies and opportunities. Accordingly, Signorielli and Kahlenberg (2003) observe: Television is the first centralized cultural influence to permeate both the initial and final years of life as well as the years between. Most infants are exposed to Television long before reading. By the time a child reaches school, Television is there to keep the elderly company when all else fails. Transcending barriers of literacy and mobility, Television is today’s major story teller, telling most of the stories to most of the people. As such, it is one of the primary socialization agents in society. Television cultivates, like parents, peers, the clergy and teachers through its stories, common world views, common values and common perspective on how men and women should think, behave and act. The influence of television on humanity is encompassing. Several works have observed the psychological aspects of watching television. People are affected differently, depending on the information type and exposure level (Bandura, 1973; Van, 1990). To moderate its impact, special government apparatus is put in place to prevent transmission of certain programmes.Theycurtail information and techniques that may be dangerous to the growing population. Accordingly, the Nigerian Broadcasting Commission recently sanctioned some stations over breach of professional practice (Aliyu, 2010). However, Television in Nigeria has been faced with challenges like press freedom, military decrees and dictatorship, government interference and other acts that hinder free flow of information. The emergence of Television in Nigeria is associated with Chief Obafemi Awolowo who started the Western Nigeria Television (WNTV) in 1959 for political reasons. This was followed by Eastern and Northern stations in 1960 and 1961 respectively. The establishment of Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) began by taking over these regional television stations in 1976 and the medium was used for propaganda and benefit of government. This led to debates for privatization and deregulation. The decree allowing private ownership of Television was signed in September 1992. Rodney (2004) states that the deregulation was to provide “a new interpretation of social responsibility and challenge both journalists and media owners to adopt the tenets of ‘new journalism’ that emphasize both profitability and communication service.” NTA’s monopoly on the Nigerian airspace was broken in the mid1990s with the establishment of privately owned television stations. Galaxy Television Ibadan was the first and followed by Africa Independent Television (AIT) but the industry still experienced some challenges. Private stations sometimes avoided the involvement of government in their information dissemination processes.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The use of television for promoting learning or as a supplement for classroom teaching continues to attract much attention because of the major role the mass media play in the contemporary society. The instructional material which television provides is often used in the educational development of students in Nigeria (Nworgu and Nworgu, 2008). This constant use of television for instructional purpose has led to the popularization of the abbreviation, ITV (instructional television) among scholars both within and outside the country. It is in view of this that the researcher intends to assess the influence of NTA educational programs on secondary schools children in port Harcourt metropolis.
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The main objective of the study is to assess the influence of NTA educational programs on secondary school students in port Harcourt metropolis. To aid the completion of the study, the researcher intends to achieve the following specific objectives:
i) To assess the effect of NTA educational programs on student academic performance
ii) To ascertain if there is any relationship between NTA educational programs and students’ academic performance in port Harcourt metropolis
iii) To investigate the influence of NTA instructional program on student reading habits
iv) To investigate the role of television programs on students reading culture
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
To aid the completion of the study, the following research question were formulated by the researcher:
i) Does NTA educational program has any effect on student academic performance?
ii) Is there any relationship between NTA educational programs and students’ academic performance in port Harcourt metropolis?
iii) Does NTA instructional programs have any influence on student reading habit?
iv) Does television educational program improve student reading culture?
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
it is believed that at the completion of the study, the findings will be of great importance to the staff and management of NTA, as the study seek to assess the importance of educational programs aired by the station to students, as it is believed that the programs has a significant effect on he reading culture of the students, the study will also be of great importance to secondary school students as the study seek to enumerate the merit of educational programs to secondary school students. The study will also be of great importance to researchers who intend to embark on a study in similar topic as the study will serve as a reference point to further studies. Finally the study will also be of great importance to student, teachers, lecturers and the general public as the study will add to the pool of existing literature.
1.6 SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The scope of the study covers an assessment of the influence of NTA educational programs on secondary school children in Port Harcourt metropolis but in the cause of the study, there were some factors which limited the scope of the study;
a) AVAILABILITY OF RESEARCH MATERIAL: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study
b) TIME: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.
c) FINANCE: The finance available for the research work does not allow for wider coverage as resources are very limited as the researcher has other academic bills to cover.
1.7 DEFINITION OF TERMS
The Nigerian Television Authority - also known as NTA is a Nigerian government-owned and partly commercial broadcaster that was inaugurated in 1977, at inauguration it had monopoly on television broadcasting in the country
Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs, and habits. Educational methods include storytelling, discussion, teaching, training, and directed research.
An educational program is a program written by the institution or ministry of education which determines the learning progress of each subject in all the stages of formal education.
1.8 ORGANIZATION OF THE STUDY
This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), statement of problem, objectives of the study, research question, significance or the study, research methodology, definition of terms and historical background of the study. Chapter two highlight the theoretical framework on which the study its based, thus the review of related literature. Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding. Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.
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