IMPACT OF INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY (ICT) ON THE TEACHING OF COURSES IN TERTIARY INSTITUTIONS (A CASE STUDY OF NNAMDI AZIKIWE UNIVERSITY AWKA)

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Background to the study

Information communication technologies (ICTs) are information handling tools that are used to produce, store, and process, distribute and exchange information. These different tools are now able to work together, and combine to form networked world-which reaches into every nook and cranny of the globe (UNDP Evaluation Office, 2011). It is an increasingly powerful tool for participating in global markets, promoting political accountability; improving the delivery of basic services; and enhancing local development opportunities (UNDP, 2011). According to Ogunsola (2015) ICT “is an electronic based system of information transmission, reception, processing and retrieval, which has drastically changed the way we think, the way we live and the environment in which we live”. It can be used to access global knowledge and communication with other people (Ogunsola, 2015). Students who use ICTs gain deeper understanding of complex topics and concepts and are more likely to recall information and use it to solve problems outside the classroom (Apple Computer, 2012). Information and Communication Technology (ICT) as a major agent of globalization is one of the most recent “wonders” of the twenty-first century as well as a gift to humanity at large. The growth of global communication has brought the idea of the interdependent world into an everyday reality. ICT has given rise to unlimited access to information in almost all spheres of human endeavor; such as education, business and commerce, politics and governance, music, entertainment, food, security, sports, weather, environment etc.

The central role of information communication technology in higher education is well acknowledged today. Modern information communication technology has the potential to foster the communication process and permit its occurrence irrespective of geographical location or time, Anibogu; (2012). However, access to and use of information communication technology is highly unequal due to factors such as economic disparity, gender, geographical location, social norms and political reasons. Access to and use of information communication technology is not only unequal amongst nation state but amongst social group within nations, states and schools as well. Though the term information and communication technology generally connotes the internet, computers and email, this term actually denotes all forms of technology used in collecting, storing, editing and passing on information in various forms (Jayer and Lokman, 2011). In addition, through ICT, students extend and deepen their knowledge, investigation, and inquiry according to their needs and interest when access to information is available on multiple levels (CEO Forum on Education and Technology, 2014). Information communication technology (ICT) has no doubt changed the face of teaching and learning in schools globally. And serious nations are taking the advantages inherent in ICT to impact on the educational sector. Though Nigeria is also making efforts to join the ICT fray, these efforts appear to be ineffective. Computer laboratories are largely non-existent in many public schools across the country. And where they exist, they are nothing to cheer. Due to this general neglect and other factors, comprising corruption, outdated curriculum, ill-motivated teachers, materialism and academic laziness on the part of Students and Teachers, the nation has been reaping mass failure in public examinations. Arising from this, stakeholders are calling on government to provide basic facilities including ICT-driven teaching aids for the nation’s educational system (The Punch Newspaper 2012).

Therefore, the Impact of ICT in Nigeria and any other developing society especially in Nnamdi Azikiwe University can’t be overemphasized. It is very pertinent if one can note that technological advancement has shown lights to the dark paths of students all over the globe.

As part of the IT curriculum, learners are encouraged to regard computer as tools to be used in all aspect of their studies. In particular, they need to make use of the multimedia technologies to communicate ideas, describe projects and order information in their academic work. It also has been shown that if some universities advance by using ICT tools, educational development will be enhanced in the schools and student’s academic output, performance and societal impact will be on the increment. Therefore, it is important to state that government at all levels needs to do a lot in the area of ICT development on our educational sectors.

Robinson (2018) stated that information technology (ICT) can be used to serve three main purposes which are:

  1. To deliver all or part of the learning content to learner
  2. To supplement and extend content provided in a different form
  3. To provide a 2 way channel of communication for exchange between tutors and students with their peers for feedback, debates, support and for solving learning problems.

Tertiary education is the third tier of the educational system and includes post-secondary education. Tertiary education is defined by the Federal Republic of Nigeria (2014) as education provided after secondary school in universities, colleges of education, polytechnics, monotechnics, and institutions offering correspondence courses. Tertiary education is instrumental in fostering growth, reducing poverty, and boosting shared prosperity. It benefits not just the individual, but the society as a whole and so it is very important. The adoption of ICT into higher education provides opportunities for learners to access more advanced and wider areas of learning to develop analytical skills. ICT is an indispensable part of the contemporary world. It is a force that has changed many aspects of people’s ways of life. The impact of ICT in the past two or three decades in all fields has been enormous. The use of ICT in education as a means of enhancing skills and building capacity for the promotion of economic development is critical to bringing about viable changes within the education system (Damkor, Irinyang Danjuma, & Haruna 2015). Professionals in the fields of education have submitted that ICT holds great promise to improve teaching and learning when properly used, thus bringing about desired quality education. As Nigeria is striving hard to keep playing its leadership role in Africa and the world as a whole. Through leadership and ownership of the implementation process, Nigeria has continued to demonstrate its commitment to the SDGs promise. There have been considerable efforts in Nigeria to pay more prominent devotion to the improvement of education, particularly tertiary institutions, in the pursuit of SDG4. One of the means of achieving this entails the adoption of ICT in Nigeria’s tertiary education. ICT has become a suitable and important tool for the modernization of education. It encourages interaction and cooperation among students, teachers, and experts regardless of where they are. Apart from modeling real world interactions, ICT-supported learning has provided an opportunity to work with students from different cultures, thereby helping to enhance learners’ communication skills (Fomunyam, 2019). The invention of the gadgets of ICT such as: internet. Computers, etc. is a priceless modern-day intervention, its inherent characteristics, such as accuracy, high speed performance of the tools of ICT, reliability, and the ability to store extremely large amounts of data, have enabled it to be applied to all human endeavors, including education and research. This study is specifically sets out to appraise the impact of information and communication technology (ICT) on the teaching of courses in tertiary institutions.

 

Statement of the Problems

Obviously, there is a rapid increase in the implementation of ICT tools in so many sectors of the nation and globe. This rapid increase of ICT usage points to the needs of improving the ICT compliance level of students especially in their tertiary school education level. Problems and challenges faced by tertiary education without the help of the tools of ICT are therefore numerous.

Prior to the present century where the advance of Information communication Technology has taking the lead in reducing the stress of human beings especially students, people suffer in educational researches and productivity. Meanwhile, one could have just logged into an information search website (www.google.com) to update him or herself with whatsoever research information he or she seeks if one is ICT equipped. Our students are faced with High stress and cost of Information search and retrieval in the offline library system (OLS) where no computer exists. Consequently, the period it will take a university researcher to conduct his or her research in the offline mode tends to take a longer time.

Furthermore, the teaching of courses to students has become very stressful especially when you dealing with the large population that is found in our universities today which most times it makes teaching of courses less effective because everyone might not be carried along, also results are been processed manually which has posed a major challenge faced in our universities and this cumulate to poor students’ result management in tertiary institutions. Lots of files are also being misplaced through the manual record system used in tertiary institutions instead of the Database Management System (DBMS) which has the ability to store and retrieve data in an automated form with access authentication and low redundancy functionality. These summed up to the reason why the researcher embarked on this research work “Impact of Information Communication Technology (ICT) on the teaching of courses in tertiary institutions” in order to expose and justify the impact of ICT on tertiary schools in Nigeria using Nnamdi Azikiwe university as a case study and procure viable recommendations to evoke the responses to the three tiers of government to equip our tertiary institution with ICT-Driven education technological tools such as; E-Library, Computer Laboratory, Online Research Center, Projectors etc.

 

 

Purpose of the Study

The main purpose of this study is to find out the impact of information and communication technology (ICT) on the teaching of courses in tertiary institutions. Specifically, the objectives therefore were to find out:

  • The ways and areas we use ICT for teaching of courses in tertiary institutions
  • The extent of availability, adequacy and usage of ICT and ICT tools in teaching of courses in tertiary institutions
  • The extent at which using ICT has helped teaching of courses in tertiary institutions

Research Questions

For the purpose of this study, the researcher brought out the following research questions:

  1. What are the ways and areas we use ICT for teaching of courses in tertiary institutions
  2. What is the extent of availability, adequacy and usage of ICT and ICT tools in teaching of courses in tertiary institutions
  3. What is the extent at which using ICT has helped teaching of courses in tertiary institutions?