This study used descriptive survey research to identify the practical skills enhancement needs of technical colleges in the northern Nigerian state of Kano. According to the goal of the study, four research questions were formulated and addressed. Four null hypotheses were constructed and evaluated at a significance threshold of 0.05 probability. Based on the study's literature analysis, a questionnaire with a specific format was constructed. Three experts confirmed the face validity of the questionnaire.
The test-retest method was used to determine the reliability of the questionnaire, and the outcome was a coefficient of 0.88. To collect data, copies of the questionnaire were distributed to 112 respondents, and the same were returned. To address the study questions, the data were analyzed using the mean and standard deviation, and the t-test was used to test the null hypothesis.
The outcomes of the study indicated that teachers of technology in Kano state technical institutes require skills for developing practical projects. Recommendations include the need for Kano state governments to package the identified competency items in improvement needs in practical skills in technical colleges into workshop materials and organize workshops on them for the benefit of wood work technology teachers, as well as the training and retraining of technology teachers and provision of instructional materials.
1.1 CONTEXT OF THE STUDY
A nation is composed of individuals whose individual efforts contribute to the growth and development of the nation. Individuals must develop and acquire the required abilities to achieve their personal and national goals. Vocational and Technical education leads to the learning of skills and techniques in a person's chosen occupation or career, allowing them to make a living.
The federal Government of Nigeria (FGN, 2004) defined vocational and technical education as those aspects of the educational process that include, in addition to general education, the study of technologies and related sciences and the acquisition of practical skills, attitudes, understanding, and knowledge pertaining to occupations in various economic and social sectors.
The primary objective of vocational and technical education is to foster self-reliance. According to Osuala (2004), vocational and technical education is intended to prepare students to earn a living in occupations where technical knowledge and an understanding of the laws of science and technology as applied to modern design, production, distribution, and services are crucial to success.
According to Uwaifo (2008), vocational and technical education is outcome-focused. It promotes technical advancement and attempts to provide new workers for employment as well as further training for those who are already qualified so that they can keep up with modern working practices.
According to Joshua (2002), vocational and technical education consists of theoretical and practical teaching for those who aspire to work in trade, industry, or any enterprise that involves the use of tools and machines for the operation, production, preservation, or distribution of goods.
Nevertheless, it is clear from the above definitions that vocational and technical education is that element of education that equips students with the skills, information, and attitudes required for gainful work. In technical colleges, vocational and technical education is provided.
According to Okoro (2001), technical colleges are the primary vocational institutions in Nigeria that train individuals to gain the practical skills, information, and attitudes necessary for effective participation in the workforce. Okoro added that technical colleges provide instruction designed to prepare students for admission into a variety of occupations. The national strategy on education (FGN, 2004) stated the objectives of technical institutions, which include training for meaningful living in the community and further education.
It means that the quality of instruction at technical colleges must be oriented toward the acquisition of appropriate work skills, abilities, and competencies for the individual to live and contribute to the development of society, in addition to the development of cognitive or intellectual abilities.
However, the objective of technical education with reference to trade-related courses in technical colleges is unlikely to be achieved using a “chalk and talk” method alone, unless educational resources are utilized effectively to engage students with the school curriculum and learning activities.
According to Adeogun (2009), resources are the accessible facilities that can be utilized to attain educational aims and objectives. Orebanjo (2010) also noted that solid human resources, in particular well-trained, qualified, and devoted teachers, aid students in the development of practical skills and the acquisition of abilities in woodwork-related services in a variety of ways.
In the state of Kano, the performance of technical college students in terms of practical skills in technology is plagued by a number of issues, including a lack of improved practical skills among technology instructors, inappropriate teaching methods for conducting practical skills, an acute shortage of qualified woodwork instructors, a lack of facilities, and inadequate funding.
According to Olaitan (1996), these issues have contributed to the poor performance of college students in technology, which must be improved. Therefore, it is noteworthy that enhanced abilities of technology teachers will significantly contribute to the effective performance of technology students at technical colleges in Kano state in terms of practical skills. This necessitates the development of methods for enhancing the practical abilities of technology instructors in the states' technical institutes.
1.2 Description of the Problem
Craftsmen, who are produced by technical colleges, comprise the lower-level workforce needed in the country. According to the National Business and Technical Education Board, students who graduate from technical colleges typically take one external exam (NABTEB). The graduates of technical colleges must obtain the essential skills to be self-sufficient or gainful engaged in industries and other woodworking organizations.
However, the majority of Nigerian graduates of technical institutes are not readily engaged by industry due to a lack of practical skills. Consequently, the majority of technology graduates from technical colleges enter the workforce. This issue of unemployment in Nigeria has been the greatest impediment to the country's economic growth and has a significant impact on its development.
In addition, the practical skills performance of technology students on the 2011 National Business and Technical Education Board (NABTEB) examination was not encouraging, particularly in Kano state. According to a 2011 study by the head examiner of NABTEB, the low performance of technology teachers in practical skills such as frame construction, carcase construction, and stool construction may have contributed to the poor performance.
Possible contributing reasons include a lack of proper techniques for teaching and implementing practical skills, an acute dearth of certified woodwork teachers, a lack of facilities, and insufficient funding.
Parents, industries, and other stakeholders in Kano state are troubled by the state's students' poor performance in technology-related practical skills due to the condition in the technical colleges. This involves the identification of the abilities required by technology instructors in technical colleges, particularly for enhancing practical skills in order to stay up with the changing nature of the workplace.
1.3 Objective of the Study
The goal of this study is to determine the practical skill enhancement requirements of technical colleges. In particular, the investigation will determine:
Practical abilities in frame construction need to be enhanced.
Practical expertise in carcass construction must be augmented.
Efforts must be made to enhance practical stool construction skills.
Teachers in technical institutes must improve their use and upkeep of contemporary tools and equipment in order to enhance practical abilities.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
To guide the investigation, the following research questions are formulated:
What improvements are required to enhance practical frame construction skills?
What improvements are required to enhance practical carcase construction skills?
What improvements are required to enhance practical stool construction skills?
What improvements are necessary for the proper use and maintenance of current tools and equipment at technical colleges by technology instructors?
The following null hypotheses have been formulated and will be evaluated at a significance level of 0.05.
Ho1: There is no statistically significant difference between the mean replies of technology teachers and supervisors in woodwork businesses about the need for improvement in frame construction practical abilities.
Ho2: There is no statistically significant difference between the mean replies of technology teachers and supervisors in woodwork businesses on the improvement needs of technology teachers to enhance their practical skills in tool manufacturing.
1.6 importance of the Research
The study's findings would help technology teachers, technology students, the Kano state Ministry of Education, curriculum planners, parents and guidance, technology industries, and the people and government of Kano state.
The study's findings will provide information for technology teachers to improve their instruction in order to address the current problem of students' poor performance in technology, as well as ways to improve students' performance on the National Business and Technical Education Board (NABTEB) examination in Kano state.
On the other hand, the findings would help students of technology.
They will be able to overcome some of the challenges encountered with developing woodworking practical abilities. Students would also gain and develop the skills that would make them independent, entrepreneurial, and increase their employability.
As a result of this study, the Ministry of Education, through the science and technical schools' board, would be more devoted to funding the training of woodwork teachers at technical institutions. Through the study's findings, the Ministry will employ trained and competent teachers and offer enough facilities for the execution of practical skills.
The outcome of the study will also give curriculum planners with information on woodwork practical skills curriculum elements that want improvement. Consequently, curriculum designers will integrate information in order to enhance the woodwork practical abilities of teachers by revising the technology curriculum's practical skills criteria.
1.7 RADIUS OF STUDY
This study focuses on identifying areas for improvement in frame construction, carcase construction, stool construction, and the use of current tools and equipment for practical skills. Other abilities will not be evaluated. In Kano state, a study will be done to solicit the opinions of technology teachers and supervisors of woodwork industries regarding the improvement needs of teachers for enhancing practical skills in technical colleges in the states.
1.7 Restrictions to the Study
The majority of school instructors have inconsistent or unfavorable work schedules. This made conducting interviews extremely challenging.
In the course of the research, the researcher had to spend a significant amount of money on printing the research work, duplicating key research materials, paying research assistants, and traveling to the site to collect information.
The respondents' unwillingness to give information out of concern that it might be leaked to the outside world and utilized against the organization constituted a further limitation.
Time constraint – In such a study project, time is of the essence. Each element of this research had to be provided within a specific timeframe. However, the researcher was required to mix the exercise with other academic obligations. Again, because the research period is too short to allow for appropriate data gathering on the topic, this could impact the conclusion of the project.
1.8 Structure of the Study
The research project consists of five (5) chapters. The first chapter consists of a basic introduction organized under the following headings: Background of the study, Methodology, and results. Problem statement, objectives of the study, significance of the study, research questions, study scope, and study organization. The second chapter is a review of relevant literature on the subject under investigation.
The third chapter describes the numerous techniques utilized to collect data for the investigation. These methods include questionnaire administration, interviews, observation, etc. The fourth chapter contains results, discussions, and an analysis of the data collected for the study.
The fifth and final chapter concludes with conclusions and recommendations.
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NEEDS FOR IMPROVEMENT IN THE ACQUISITION OF PRACTICAL SKILLS IN KANO STATE TECHNICAL COLLEGES