CAUSES OF MASS FAILURE IN NIGERIA TERTIARY INSTITUTION
1.1 Background of the Study
Education according to Sharma,? (2010) is defined as an effective weapon to fight out a war against ignorance, poverty and diseases which are root causes of restlessness throughout the world ?without education no nation can claim long life. Men make nations strong and education therefore strengthens the human mind. At the same time education according to Ogutu and Wandibba, (2007) is a process by which people acquire knowledge skills, habits, values or attitudes.
According to the 2015 National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) information handbook, one of the goals of education in Nigeria, is to equip the youths with relevant knowledge, skills and expertise to enable them play effective and productive roles in the life of the nation. (NBTE) attempts to achieve this goal by promoting quality education in secondary schools. For instance, it develops and reviews the curriculum and other learning materials, provides teaches and organizes regular supervision of schools.
The Nigerian government recognizes the fact that education is an effective weapon and uses a relatively large proportion of its budget on education alone. For instance, the Nigeria government today spends 71 billion out of 232 billion that is 31% of its annual budget in financing education (Daily nation 13th June 2003).
This move confirms that education is a very vital element in our society. The government relies on it for the provision of the much-needed manpower in the country.
The parents, community and other interested groups are concerned about the low standards of performance in the schools. Maranga, (2003) pointed out that general performance in education is still wanting. There are several factors which contribute to poor academic performance by pupils, Eshiwani, (2003) quoting Shiefelbein and Simmons (2015), gives the determinants of school achievement in the third world countries as: school resources and management, teachers? characteristics and student traits. According to Campbell (2003), curriculum and instruction refers to activities in which school workers engage, plan, implement and evaluate instruction programmes.
Each manager should have clearly defined philosophy and mission on which to build organizational goals to be achieved. Krug (2005) established that good schools are distinguished from others by their clear understanding of the goal. The principals ought to ensure that the curriculum offered is reflected in the mission of the school. All projects, funding, co-curricular activities and everything else should be tied to the mission.
The minister for education states that the basic reason why some schools performed better than others in examinations was that while some head of tertiary institutions organized the learning process for their students, others leave it to chance, (Kombo, 2008).
The aim of this paper is to make a contribution to the educational objectives to be taken by considering the students’ perceptions. The purpose of this section is to identify factors that have been associated with academic failure from the available research literature. The intention is to use these factors to develop an effective and efficient model of prediction of causes of mass failure.
Academic failure in school is a problem that has become a serious concern for countries in different parts of the world. Several research projects in this field have tried to locate the different causes of academic failure. Students usually experience academic difficulties that have both academic and non-academic characteristics and the various combinations of reasons for academic failure results in different types of student profiles suggesting different strategies of intervention. It was discovered within the research literature that when intervention techniques arc used with failing students, their performance improves the subsequent school year.
Some countries have located some of the factors that are perceived to be important for academic failure and have begun to take action (Mirosley, 2010). The review of the literature points out that failing students can be assisted to become successful in classroom when appropriate intervention techniques are used.
Often in research on student learning and behavioural outcomes some personal characteristics of the students are measured and these are then related to some outcome measure.
Among these, personal characteristics are self-concept, personality, motivation, intelligence, cognitive style and locus of control (Zarb, 2004). However, many of the environmental and contextual problems which lead to unsuccessful learning are not taken into consideration.
A number of other factors relating to examination bodies, government, parents, teachers and students have also been identified. Uwadiae (2000) attributed the poor performance of students in WASSCE to a lack of adequate preparation, shortage of qualified teachers, inadequate teaching materials, lack of good school environment and infrastructural facilities, inability to understand questions requiring high level thinking and shallow answers to questions due to poor command of English Language.
Government was expected to create an enabling environment for effective teaching and learning to take place through the provision of necessary infrastructure, facilities and qualified manpower. The poor performance was also linked to factors such as lack of equipped knowledge should not be allowed to continue uninvestigated if the country is to achieve the educational objective of providing qualitative graduates to power Nigerian economic and political development programmes. The quality of output of any operation is a function of the input that is processed. Consequently, the quality of output of primary and secondary school certificate holders depends, to a large extent, on the qualification for entry into the teaching profession shall be the Nigeria Certificate in Education(NCE).quality of trained teachers from colleges of education. This factor is recognized by the Nigerian National Policy on Education (2004), which states that the minimum
1.2 Statement of the problem
The consequences of not addressing the problem of students? mass failure are many. Students by their nature do get involved in very many activities outside their studies. When students lose interest in their studies, failure rate will be higher. They may engage in very many unlawful activities like cultism, robbery, prostuition, and tyranny, among other vices. Furthermore, students? low academic achievement may result in failure. When failure becomes persistent, students may easily withdraw from the school system. Research finding has also shown that economic deprivation could lead to failure.
In addition to this, students may engage in all forms of disruptive behaviour in and outside the school system. Drug addiction is one of the problems likely to be encountered by the students. Research reports confirmed that more students are into drug addiction. Reports of survey carried out in Lagos and Kano showed that cannabis, heroin and cocaine are widely abused by Lagos and Kano students. The NDLEA drug force reports showed that the common drugs abused mainly by smokers were marijuana (86.9%), cannabis (66%), alcohol (22%) cocaine (18%) and heroin (13.8%) (Vanguard, February 21, 2004).
However, excessive alcohol consumption creates numerous health problems and shortens lifespan. Heavy drinkers are at greater risk of cancer, ulcer, heart disease, muscle wastage, malnutrition and cirrhosis of liver. These problems could lead to death. Low academic achievement could also lead to joblessness after the students have graduated. Hence, the students may find it difficult to compete with their colleagues who have passed out of the school system with very good grades. This may lead to further problems like robbery, prostitution, general violence, alcoholism, smoking, drug trafficking, among others.
Achievement is important in education. Despite the huge resources expended by government, results in the required quantum and quality are not forthcoming. It is in view of these problems that research is currently being done to look into the institutional factors that are responsible for students? academic achievement among students in colleges of education so as to enable policy intervention and engender better performance.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The broad objective is to investigate the causes of mass failure among students in tertiary institutions. The specific objectives are:
i. to determine the actual causes of students? low academic performance
ii. to determine the reactions of students to mass failure
iii. to establish strategies that can be adopted to improve performance in investigative news reporting by students? mass communication of the Ibarapa Polytechnic, Eruwa.
iv. to determine the effect of the students? mass failure.
1.4. Research Questions
From the above research problem, the following research questions were generated;
i. To what factors do students attribute low academic performance?
ii. What are the attitudes of students towards the mass failure?
1.5 Significance of the study
This study is significant in many respects. The study will help to reveal the components of the causes of mass failure among students in tertiary institutions. It will compare the relationship of the variables with one another as they affect students from the tertiary used for the study. Ranking of the factors will be done according to the perception of the students to make readers have an overview of the interrelatedness of the variables used for the study. This is of particular significance in a democratic environment where political parties attempt to improve educational performance in a competitive manner.
The study therefore offers empirical support to assist educational policy makers, administrators and educators in the educational planning and implementation. Finally, students would also benefit from the study through suggestions offered on ways of improving students? academic achievement by the various interactions of the components of institutional factors identified in the study and the study will lay a solid foundation which subsequent researchers in similar studies may build upon.
1.6 Scope of the study
The study will investigate the causes responsible for students? mass failure in Nigeria tertiary institutions in The Ibarapa Polytechnic, Eruwa. It will also report how the factors relate to one another among the tertiary institution.
1.7 Definition of Terms
Failure: Is the state or condition of not meeting a desirable or intended objective.
Student: Can be described as a learner especially one enrolled in a school or college.
Institution: Is an organization or other formal social structure that governs a field of action.
Tertiary Institution: also referred to as third stage, third level, and postsecondary education, is the educational level following the completion of a school providing a secondary education.
Education: simply means to bring up or nourish the abilities of children and help them to draw out their aims of life.
Academic Performance: is defined by students? reporting of past semester CGPA/GPA and their expected GPA for the current semester.