1.1 BACKAROUND OF THE STUDY
This research is on the attitude of female mass communication students towards journalism as a career(a study of Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka). Journalism the work of collection, preparation and distribution of related commentary and feature materials through such media as pamphlets, news letter, magazines, radio, motion pictures, television, the internet and books.
The earliest known journalists product was a news sheet in ancient Rome called the ACTA DIURNA published daily from 59BC, it was hung in prominent places and recorded important social and political events.
Journalism in the 2oth was marketed by a growing sense of professionalism. In our society today it has been observed that female mass communication students have negative attitude towards taking journalism as a career. This negative attitude is highly reflected in the number of mass media houses.
Almost all institution of higher learning in nigeria offer mass communication courses leading to the award of various degrees and certificates, including National Diploma, Higher National Diploma, Bachelor and masters degrees.
The increase in the number of female graduates from all these institution are not reflected in the media of communication in the country. Each year, hundreds of female students graduates as mass communications. A close look show that the number of female journalist students surpassed the number of males. But in the field today, a good number of those female graduates are not seen working in the various media houses scattered over the country.
Reference to the convocation booklets from these schools revealed that a good number of female mass communication students graduated from these schools. In the year 1997, about 150 female journalist graduated from federal polytechnic oko. The Ogun state polytechnic in the year turned out about 86 female journalist students, institute of management and technology (IMT) Enugu had about 140 female graduates. Bida polytechnic had about 26 female graduates from the department of mass communication.
In July 1996, the Ogun state polytechnic turned out 146 female student journalists in both OND and HND levels, the institute of management and technology (IMT) Enugu turned out about 120 female student graduates in both ND and HND levels ( 1996 convocation list/booklets).
Similarly with other mass communication schools in the country for instance, in 1995, the convocation booklets of the University of Nigerian Nsukka, revealed that 45 female students graduated from the department of mass communication. In the year 2008, Nnamdi Azikiwe University (NAU) Awka turned out about 58 female graduates from the department of mass communication. Between the year 2008 and 2009, caritas university Enugu graduated over 50 female journalists.
Presently, in my class in the department of mass communication the number of female students surpassed the number of female students in the mass communication with a great difference.
In recent years, media houses in the western countries lack trained female journalist in the various communication activities. Invariably it has been the same in Nigerian and this could be seen in most cases of the media houses in Nigerian. There has been an imbalance in the number of female, female and trained journalists working with them.
Those who are worried about this situation said that there were more women than men seeking jobs in the media houses and they all have the same ability and background, more men get the jobs. ( women in communication pg 8) she noted that women could only be awarded a job if they are hard working and qualified they must be awarded or offered a job in the journalism profession.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE RESEARCH PROBLEM
This study was undertaken because of the low participation of female mass communication students towards practicing journalism as their career. Despite the fact that there is considerably good number of trained female journalists, very few of them are working with media houses in Nigerian
A large number of female journalists are produced from different institutions offering mass communication, but female participation in the profession is very negligible.
According to Omenugha (2004:4) one thing that is glaring in the Nigerian media is the near absence of Nigerian women as makers. Though Nigerian is developing, it has gotten to a stage where the female journalist and their male counterparts should be competing in the media houses.
The number of female journalists in the field is very few compared to the number that graduated from journalism schools and universities. The female tend to run away from practicing journalism. Women journalists are not often seen as lectures neither to women help in the development and promotion of the profession unlike in other professions where the female and male compete and seek superiority over each other.
This dormant attitude of female towards the profession has resulted to the male claiming superiority over them in the field and as such not portraying a good image of women in the society. This is because most men in the society believe that journalism exposes the practitioners makes the female counterparts loose their dignity.
Many female journalists who work in the media sometimes do not show keen interest in their job. This affects the female practitioners as the male practitioners always tend to over shadow them both in position and in interest to work.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
Because of the way the image of women in our society are been portrayed when it comes to them practicing journalism as their profession, the study is therefore aimed at finding out the attitudes of female mass communication students towards journalism as a career.
This study therefore tends to look into the image of women in the media and more also find out why there has been is imbalance in the ratio of working male and female journalist.
This research work will also help to reveal why there is sharp contrast from the number of female journalists that graduate from journalism schools and the number in the field.
Finally, this research work helps to give suggestion based on findings.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This study is very important because a lot of people are marveled over the issues of why female mass communication student do not make up journalism as a career after studies. It has really agitated the minds of some professionals and has equally created a lot of controversies.
The researcher, therefore, has deemed it fit out the reasons for such negative attitude of female mass communication students towards journalism.
Journalism as the researcher could understand is very controversial and need to live on mere assumption. This study therefore provided are me for an in-dept study on the controversial issue of knowing the militant against the idea of female mass communication student going into journalism as career, how do these female students see. The practicing journalism, do they go into the study with intention of practicing journalism or taking it up just as a career?
The researcher also observed that female journalist do not only disengage in the practice of journalist but also do not contribute in the development and achievement of journalism schools.
According to Okunna (1990) in most schools in Nigerian, women are not often seen as lectures both at universities and polytechnics.
They do not involve in the teaching of mass communication courses. Women prefer working in other fields to the career of journalism.
The study will serve as a resource material for program design and implementation in the effort concerning women in development and to students who wish to study journalism. It will be a useful reading and references, materials.
1.5 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. Do female mass communication students have negative attitude towards journalism as a career?
2. Is there any discrimination against the women journalists?
3. Are female journalists shy of caring out their study?
4. Are there wrong impressions about female journalists
5. Does the roles of women as mothers and wives contribute to the problems facing female journalists
1.6 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
Based on the research questions, the following hypothesis are derived:
HI: Female mass communication students have negative attitude towards journalism as a career
HO: Female mass communication students do not have negative attitude journalism career
HI: There is discrimination against the female journalists
HO: There is no discrimination against the female journalists
HI: Female journalists are shy of carrying out their duty
HO: Female journalists are not shy of carrying out their duty.
HI: There are wrong impressions about the female journalists
HO: There are no wrong impressions about the female journalists
Hi: Female roles as mother and wives are some of the problems faced by female journalist
Ho: Female roles as mothers and wives are not some of the problems of female journalist.
1.7 DEFINITION OF TERMS
STUDY: This is an act of setting ones mind to acquiring knowledge and understanding, through reading, research etc.
ATTITUDE: This is a way of thinking or the character which someone exhibits towards something or somebody
FEMALE: This is a particular sex or gender of a primate (Human beings) that can give birth to children.
MASS: A large number of people or things grouped together.
COMMUNICATION: The process of expressing, or passing ideas, feelings, or information from one person to another, or to a group of people.
STUDENTS: These are people who are studying in one school in order to acquire knowledge.
TOWARDS: This can be said to be the direction of or close to something or somebody.
JOURNALISM: This is the work of collecting and publishing of news stories and articles in Newspapers and magazines or broadcasting them on radio and Television to inform the general public on things happening in the world.
CAREER: This is particular job or the type of job one do in order to earn a living.
1.8 ASSUMPTIONS OF THE STUDY
A good number of professional have already made similar studies of women images on the media and their attitude towards journalism.
In this study, the researcher raised a number of assumptions. She assumes that he attitude of the female mass communication students towards journalism as their career is very poor. She equally assumed that the way image of the women are being portrayed in the society as journalist have created an imbalance in the ration of working male journalists to their female counterparts.
In essence, the researcher has deemed it fit to concentrate more on Nigeria female journalist and the issues that affect them as working journalists.
1.9 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
Scope of the study refers to the general outline of what the study is all about.
There is nothing that man does that can be said to be exclusive because human efforts are always limited by one thing or the other. This study is based on the attitudes of female mass communication students towards journalism as a career.
Also the study is limited to Nnamdi Azikiwe state. It would have augured well to study the entire higher institution in Nigeria but due to limited time frame that would not be possible and beside unavailability of fund and the demand for other academic work made this study to particularize its sample on one section on Anambra.
1.10 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The research has decided to limit this study to the students of Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka, Anambra.
It was therefore limited to find out only the attitude of female mass communication students towards journalism as a career, including the attitude of others towards female journalist.
The ideal situation would have been to study a much wider area and a larger number of female student journalists, and practicing women journalist to enhance the reliability of the data and to make generalization more appropriate. But due to financial constraint, it was limited to the school mentioned above.