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1.1 Background to the Study.
The radio is considered to be one of the most powerful information dissemination medium available to the mass communicator. It is considered to be one of the most effective for development communication purposes especially in the rural areas. This is because radio waves are easily accessible and the radio is believed to be the cheapest technology in terms of first and maintenance costs ((Ojebode, 2014),
Lerner (2013) in his book the Passing of Traditional Society which was published in 1958 wrote what is still considered today as one of the most rational argumentsfor modernization. Along with other scholars like McAnany and Jamison (2012), Lerner viewed mass media, especially radio as the means by which people of the Third World could be influenced. His ideas had several critics who viewed his position as ethnocentric and a ploy by the West to force capitalism on disempowered people of the Third World countries.
This study therefore seeks to examine the Academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic perception of Spider FM Radio as a tool for creating awareness on developmental issues. This is because development communication scholars believe that several aspects of national development revolve around proper and adequate use of relevant radio broadcast messages (McAnany & Jamison, 2017).
An important consideration here is how the audience such as Academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic perceive and are influenced by the Spider FM radio messages. It would be important to know what they use the messages for in light of the Uses and Gratification model (a subset of Audience Theory) (Lull, 2013) or if they had a preferred, oppositional or negotiated disposition to the broadcast messages as another Audience Theory, the Reception Model suggests (Hall, 2011).
Radio is the chosen medium because it is relatively cheap and available, there is also an adequate radio broadcasting infrastructure in Nigeria which has existed since the 1940’s (Umar, 2017). Also, and most importantly, the Academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic perception is considered to be essentially a listening audience (Yusuf, 2018). As a rural- oriented medium, the radio is believed to have a multiplier effect as A tells B what he heard on radio and so on. This is especially true of rural radio which increases the capacity for knowledge sharing and potentially the rate of development through community involvement.
Mass Communication and development scholars like Akinfeleye (2013) and Quebral (2015) are of the opinion that, the mass media (in this case radio) constitute both “cause” and “effect” of development where “cause” is the mass media programmes in terms of broadcast media messages and “effects” is the response to the stimuli of messages. In addition to these radio has some unique features which include portability, cheapness, universality and selectivity.
The word development has been given many different meanings. For some, development means more material prosperity; owning, land and a house. Regardless of any particular normative framework, many would view development as a multi-sectional process, involving social, economic and political change aimed at improving people’s lives. In other words, development means each member of a given community has an equal opportunity to use available resources to increase their potentials. Development process uses and manages natural resources to satisfy human needs and improve people’s quality of life (Philips, 2015).
Todaro and Smith (2013) identified three objectives of development as increasing the availability of basic life sustaining goods such as food, shelter, health and protection; raising levels of living in addition to higher incomes through the provision of more jobs as well as better education and greater attention to cultural and human values. Development is perceived from not only from the perspective of enhancing material well-being but also to generate greater individual and national self-esteem as well as expand the range of economic and social choices available to individuals and nations by freeing them from servitude and dependence. National development on the other hand is described as the overall development or a collective socio-economic, political as well as religious advancement of a country or nation. This is best achieved through development planning, which can be described as the country’s collection of strategies mapped out by the government (Lawal and Oluwatoyin, 2016).
The media in any society are known to perform three basic functions – enlighten, educate and entertain. However, in recent times, these roles have been expanded to include national development and mass mobilization of citizens for developmental efforts. Professor Lai Oso in the book Health and Behavioral Change Communication for Development (Akinfeleye, 2017) noted that communication has become a major component of the development process. Asante (2018) emphasized that in any developing country, the radio such as Spider FM has a crucial role to play in engendering development among the populace. The media, he opines, is expected to function as part of the national efforts in the arduous task of nation building and modernization.
Ahmadu (2016) observed that in the “developed Western world, the role of the radio is to inform objectively and entertain in the context of the market, to stand as a watchdog for the people against the abuse of power, and as the ‘centerpiece of the democratic assumption. In other words, the media checks the activities of the government that negates the principles of democracy advocating for freedom of expression, preventing the abuse of power by cautioning the defaulting party as well as contributing and supporting the society to become a truly democratic environment. The media in the developing country on the other hand is vested with the role of nation-builder and development agent.
This study is therefore aimed at assessing the Academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic perception of Spider FM Radio.
1.2 Statement of the Problem:
The mass Media particularly the radio is the most important medium for creating awareness on so many issues such as education. Radio therefore is an indispensable medium for rural development. Some of the obvious advantages of radio over other mediums of information exchange are that it is portable, cheap, and accessible and the signals can be transmitted over a long distance. In this instance therefore, development experts in the field of education are beginning to realize this advantages and are beginning to utilize them.
Radio is a useful medium especially in creating awareness about health. Health communication is no longer kept at the back door but creating awareness on health related matters is gradually gaining momentum. The populace no longer relies on information from health officials for their wellbeing, but they seek information from the media on issues relating to their health.
People seek information on so many other issues such as education, developmental purposes, protection of welfare workers, increment of wages among workers and other incentives meant for the proper enhancement among staff like Kaduna Polytechnic.
Also, the millennium development goal outlines the development of workers as a very important issue and it is on the front burner of all government policies and objectives. Performance of staff is a catalyst for growth, but unfortunately, the sector of workers welfare has been politicized and given lackadaisical attitude by the government.
In view of this, the radio is therefore the medium of choice in campaigns that seek to create, promote and sustain awareness. It is not known if the radio has been a useful tool in creating awareness on the academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic.
1.3 Aims and Objectives of the Study
The objectives of this study is to determine the Academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic perception of Spider FM Radio. Specifically, it seeks to:-
1. Find out the role of the Spider FM radio programme on the Academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic perception on the developmental purposes.
2. Determine the factors affecting the academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic
by Spider FM radio programme.
3. Proffer the best options for improving the factors affecting the academic
staff of Kaduna Polytechnic by Spider FM radio programme.
1.4 Research Questions
The research questions are therefore as follows:
1. What is the role of the Spider FM radio programme on the Academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic perception on the developmental purposes?
2. What are the factors affecting the academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic
by Spider FM radio programme?
3. What are the best options for improving the factors affecting the academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic by Spider FM radio programme?
1.5 Scope of the Study
The research primarily focuses on Academic staff of Kaduna Polytechnic perception of Spider FM Radio.
1.6 Significance of the Study
The study’s significance lies in the fact that it will provide invaluable data for administrators, students, government, policy makers among others.
This study would provide a fish eye view of the problems affecting some programmes in the Spider FM radio station under study.
This finding would inarguably assist the government to plan their programmes better.
The study therefore derives its significance from the fact that it aims to find out how relevant the Spider FM radio is in the creation of awareness on the
need of various developmental programmes.
It is believed that policy makers and education administrators at both State and Federal levels will find this study beneficial in helping the students their knowledge from Spider FM valuable programmes.
1.7 Operational Definition of Key Terms
Radio: The radio is a device which has the ability to send and receive messages by electromagnetic waves.
Awareness: To bring attention to, and create understanding for issues surrounding a particular subject.
Perception: Opinion observed from sections of any given subject.
Academic Staff: Board of persons that oversees an organization or an institution that govern its affairs.
Kaduna Polytechnic: Is one of the Federal Polytechnics established in Nigeria by the Federal Government.
Spider FM Radio: Is one of the radio stations that has its establishment to cater for Mass Communication students in various fields.
Ahmadu, A. (2016), Community Radio: An imperative for Development in the
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Akinfeleye, Q. (2013). Contemporary Issues in Mass Media for Development and
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Asante, A. (2018), On Mass Communication and Mass communication in Nigeria.
Africa Media Review, 4(1), 60-74.
Hall, E. (2013). An Assessment of the Mass Media as Tools for Promoting Girl-
Child Education in Jos Metropolis. International Journal of Language Literature and Gender Studies, 2(6), 62-86.
Lawal. O.(2016). Nomadism and Pastoralism: A conceptual frame work in
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Umar, H. (2017),Productivity and National Development (1). Daily Trust,p. 57.
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