IMPACT OF INDUSTRIAL ACTIONS (ASUU STRIKE) ON UNIVERSITY STUDENT ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The education sub-sector especially tertiary institutions in Nigeria have witnessed in recent time constant shutdown due to industrial strikes. The effect of these recurrent closures of schools and academic programs on students learning effectiveness can better be understood than explained.
Tertiary education in Nigeria has thus suffered severe setbacks as a result of industrial activities by both the academic (ASUU) and the non academic staffs. This has always subjected the students to pitiable conditions, disrupting academic programs, granting students unwarranted extension in their study years, poor students concentration on academic programs and poor lecturer-student interactions amongst others. As a result, the academic performance of students has declined while other forms of examination misconduct have increased.
University worldwide is considered as the bastion of learning, the fountain of intellectual progress and a platform for the formation of leaders of tomorrow. According to Ike (1999) a university fulfills, one major function, it is a knowledge and value provider, in other words, a university progresses when it is able to provide knowledge and value and when it is not properly managed by the administrators and staff, it then fails in its function of providing knowledge and value.
This according to Nwankwo (2000) explains why merit has been the watchword in the university system an institution in which a student must first be deemed worthy in character and learning before being enrolled into the Honors Degree.
Universities have a vital role in human capital development, research, and technical innovation. Globally, university education investment is a crucial component of national development efforts. Today, nations rely more on the knowledge, ideas, and abilities generated by university research.
Nations invest in university education because society expects it to contribute to national growth in three primary ways. First, society expects universities to produce highly skilled professionals in technology, engineering, management, and other fields; second, universities are responsible for producing their own corps of academic personnel, that is, the intellectual resource pool that will generate new knowledge and innovation to solve developmental problems through scientific research.
Thirdly, universities generate instructors, administrators and managers for other tiers of human resources development institutions.
Academic Staff Union of Universities is the principal union whose persistent industrial action has a significant impact on students' academic performance (ASUU).
The union was founded in 1978 as a successor to the Nigerian Association of University Teachers, which was founded in 1965, and includes academic employees from the Universities of Ibadan, Nigeria, Nsukka, Ife, and Lagos.
The union was active in its struggles against the military administration in the 1980s. In 1988, the union initiated a national strike for equitable salaries and university autonomy. As a result, the ASUU was declared illegal on August 7, 1988, and its assets were confiscated.
It was allowed to continue in 1990, but after another industrial action, it was again stopped on August 23, 1992. On September 3, 1992, an agreement was struck that satisfied several of the union's requests, including the right of workers to engage in collective bargaining.
The ASUU planned more industrial activities in 1994 and 1996, protesting against the firing of staff by the Sani Abacha military dictatorship. After the return of democracy in 1999 with the establishment of the Fourth Republic of Nigeria, the union continued to seek the rights of university workers despite opposition from the government of President Olusegun Obasanjo. In July 2002, the national president of ASUU, petitioned Justice Mustapha Akanbi of the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission to probe the leadership of the University of Ilorin for financial mismanagement and corruption.
In 2007, ASUU started on an industrial action for three months. In May 2008, it launched two week ‘warning strikes' to press a range of demands, including an enhanced salary system and reinstatement of forty-nine academics who were sacked from University of Ilorin in 1998.
In June 2009 ASUU instructed its members in federal and state colleges countrywide to embark on an indefinite strike over concerns with the Federal Government's on an agreement it struck with the union nearly two and a half years before. After three months of industrial action, in October 2009, ASUU and other staff unions negotiated a memorandum of understanding with the government and called off the industrial action.
Prior to the last industrial action undertaken by ASUU, the National Executive Council (NEC) of the Union met from Tuesday 29th November to Thursday 1st December 2011 at the University of Port- Harcourt to review, among other things: the level of implementation of the 2009 ASUU/Government Agreement; the extent of compliance with the 2011 ASUU/FGN Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the implementation of the Agreement; and the governmenta€TMs unilateral dissolution of the Universities Teaching It was ultimately canceled on February 1, 2012. On August 30, 2012, ASUU again initiated a strike warning. All of these factors have had a negative impact on the academic activities of university students, as well as the academic calendar and student performance. On July 1, 2013, ASUU began another six-month industrial action that lasted until December 17, 2013. This action had a significant impact on Nigerian undergraduates and led to the participation of students in numerous unwholesome activities. Typically, these persistent protests by ASUU prompt industrial action by sister organizations such as NASU, SSANU, etc.
Industrial action or strike is workersâ€™ refusal to work as protest over inadequate service or poor condition. Academic and non-academic worker strikes in the education sector can result in exam cheating, corruption, and other social ills. Strike is a social disease comparable to corruption since it consumes students' time, making it harder for them to be fully and properly “baked” within the allotted educational time limit. As a result, the society receives ‘products' that are deficient in both character and education. This research aims to examine the impact of these industrial actions on the academic performance of Ekiti State University students.
1.2Â Â STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The Nigerian University Academic Staff Union (ASUU) and other industrial unions have demanded that the government implement a 2009 agreement to prevent the collapse of the nation's universities. On the other hand, the administration proposes a selected, piecemeal approach. Education is without a doubt too important to the survival of any nation to be considered as a political or evasive polemical issue. It is undeniable that, by international standards, Nigeria is not doing enough to fund the education of her children. As far as the government is concerned, there are other competing things for the little monies available and government is not doing enough in the infrastructural development of the Nigerian Universities.
This has produced severe altercations between government and these industrial unions including ASSU culminating into repeated industrial activities. The continuous industrial action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and all these industrial unions has adversely affected the academics of university students; it often poses a number of problems to their study duration, examination performance, and final grade. The pupils are kept out of school for an extended period of time; the majority of them are completely cut off from academics since their home environments may not be conducive to constructive and demanding academic exercise. The pupils and their parents become frustrated due to the protracted anticipation of school's imminent return. Some of the kids when at home doing nothing get absorbed in other things other than academics. On the one hand, they serve as easy recruiters for criminal actions such as armed robbery, kidnapping, and rape, while on the other, they promote cultism. This has made them a threat to the society's peace and order in Nigeria. However, the extent to which university staffs, including ASUU, affect students' academic performance requires a closer look, and the purpose of this study is to examine the extent to which it has affected the performance of students in Ekiti State University, Ado Ekiti, Ekiti State.
Â 1.3Â Â OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The purpose of this study is to investigate the effect of industrial actions on the academic performance of Ekiti State University students. Particular objectives are:
To investigate how the average university student views industrial action by university labor organizations, particularly the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
Determine whether industrial action by university employees has an effect on the reading habits of students during the period of academic interruption.
Determine the extent to which disruptions in academic programs at universities impact the learning effectiveness of students.
Determine if Lecturer Industrial Actions significantly contribute to students' low GPAs.
To study whether industrial actions have direct influence on studentsâ€™ overall academic achievement.
Â To determine whether industrial actions stimulate kids to learn.
1.4Â Â RESEARCH QUESTIONS
In order to direct the study and fulfill the research objectives of the study, the following research questions were prepared in line with the objectives:
How does the average university student view industrial action by university labor unions, particularly the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU)?
To what extent does industrial action by the staffs of the universities influence studentsâ€™ reading habits?
How would the disruption of academic programs in Nigerian institutions caused by the ASUU strike affect students' ability to learn?
Â Do Industrial actions significantly contribute to Low CGPA of students?
Do industrial activities have a direct effect on the overall academic performance of students?
Do labor disputes drive pupils to learn?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
1. Ho: Students have a poor opinion of academic staff's industrial actions.
Hello: Students hold a favorable view of academic staff strikes at universities.
2. Â Â Â Ho: Industrial actions do not alter reading habits of students when academic activities are disturbed.
When academic activities are disturbed by industrial actions, the reading habits of pupils change.
3. Ho: There is no correlation between industrial actions and the academic performance of students.
There is a considerable correlation between student learning effectiveness and industry actions.
4. Ho: There is no correlation between student grade point average and industrial actions.
There is a substantial correlation between student GPAs and industrial actions.
5. Ho: There is no significant correlation between student academic achievement and industrial actions.
There is a considerable association between student academic performance and industrial actions.
6. Ho: Work stoppages do not stimulate students to learn.
Industrial actions encourage student learning.
1.6Â Â significance OF THE STUDY
This research will contribute to the body of knowledge by enlightening students on how to deal with the adverse industrial actions undertaken by university employees, so enabling them to perform as expected in their studies. In addition, this study would contribute to the development of research and knowledge at the university. Again, based on the findings of this study, students would be able to devise outstanding methods for maintaining excellent performance, even in the event of a strike by several university labor unions, including the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU). Policymakers may also find the study's findings beneficial for future planning to combat the problem by minimizing the frequency of industrial activity.
1.7Â Â SCOPE OF STUDY/LIMITATION OF STUDY
This study will examine the impact of industrial action on the academic performance of Ekiti State University students, concentrating on the Ekiti State University and the students' perceptions of industrial action in Nigerian universities.
Constraints of the Study
During the course of this investigation, the researcher ran into the following limitations:
As the research is combined with other academic pursuits, there is a time limitation.
Second is the lack of information, such as poor response rates from respondents for whatever reason.
Lastly in cost constraint created by the necessity for constant selection for information content.
DEFINITION OF TERMS
Industrial action: a demonstration in which workers show that they disagree with a policy of their employer
Performance is the accomplishment of a specific task judged against known and predetermined criteria for precision and thoroughness.
Infrastructure: the basic physical and organizational structure and facilities e.g. building, roads, power supply etc.
Funding: a sum of money or other resources set up for a specific aim.
IMPACT OF INDUSTRIAL ACTIONS (ASUU STRIKE) ON UNIVERSITY STUDENT ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE