Readiness of Undergraduate Students for Distributed Learning in Selected Higher Educational Institutions in Southern Nigeria (Published)
The study investigated the level of readiness of undergraduate students for Distributed Learning. Descriptive survey method of the cross-sectional research design was used for the study. A stratified random sampling technique was used to select the sample of 600 from the population of 39,316 undergraduate students of the University of Port Harcourt and the Port Harcourt study center of the National Open University of Nigeria. A self-assessment instrument, Distributed learning Readiness Instrument (DLRI), developed by the researcher was used to collect data from the sample. The reliability of the instrument was determined through the test-retest method and a reliability coefficient of 0.77 was obtained. Three experts in the field of Educational Technology and two in Measurement and Evaluation confirmed the face and content validity of the instrument. Six research questions were answered using mean and standard deviation while six hypotheses were tested with t-test and one-way ANOVA at 0.05significance level. The results showed that Distance and Part-time students had higher level of readiness than Full-time and Sandwich students. Also, there were significant differences found on modes of study, gender, age and course of study. The conclusion is that there is inequity in the readiness of students for e-Learning. The use of readiness assessment, orientation programmes, effective learner support were recommended.
Training need on Communication Skills and ICTs in Agricultural Extension; An Effective Approach to Rural Development (Published)
The increased use of information and communication technologies in extension requires continuous training of personnel of extension service delivery in any country. The advent of ICTs in agricultural extension is that which can boost the collection, processing and transmission of data, as well as quality information to more farmers in a bottom-up and interactive channel of communication. However, ICTs may be the only way in which farmers can access a variety of information sources that are accessible, affordable, relevant and reliable. In some developing countries, application of ICTs in communication and other farmers ‘need may assume repugnant to their daily use as a result of the complexity of the innovation. This means that these individuals are disadvantaged and lack the basic skills required to harness the benefit of ICTs. In this case, assistance of intermediaries such as extension agents may thus be required and this calls for the training and retraining of such personnel so that they can give their best services to the rural farmers to enable them improve on their production capacity. In view of these, this paper used analytical approach to review the following; Concept of ICTs, training Types of Training, Process of Training Phases, determinants of the areas of training programme, selecting a training method and Constraints to training of extension personnel. This paper recommended that there is need for capacity building orientation and training of extension worker at all levels to be able to provide more customized information to meet each user’s needs.
Intercultural Communication Competence Projects within English as a Lingua Franca Contexts (Published)
Highlighting the essential role intercultural communication plays as an integral component of effective communication skills in a globalized world, the current paper portrays an intercultural communication competence project the main aim of which is to augment students’ communication skills in English as a lingua franca, whilst targeting both intercultural communication competence and electronic communication. The research project lasted for over three academic years in a row, involving two universities in Dubai and Bonn. Utilizing modern communication tools synchronously and asynchronously, the participating students engaged in intercultural communication online for nine weeks each academic semester. Throughout project implementation, the participating students used self-created texts, audio and video posts. To measure project effectiveness, the researcher administered a questionnaire the results of which indicated subjects’ positive attitudes towards the intercultural communication competence project as a means for fostering intercultural communication, enhancing language mastery, and enriching technology literacy.
Personal Needs as Correlates of Life Skills Needs of First Year Students at College of Technology Education, Kumasi. (Published)
The study investigated personal and life skills needs of first year students of College of Technology Education, Kumasi. The study established relationship between personal and life skills needs. Descriptive survey design was employed for the study. The population involved first year students. Purposive sampling was used to select 263 students. One set of questionnaire was used to gather data from students. The reliability estimate of the questionnaire was 0.82. Data were analyzed using means and standard deviation, percentages, Pearson Correlation and simple regression. The study found that developing confidence was the common personal need of students. Learning to make decision was found to be the most perceived life skills needs. Significant and positive relationship was established between life skills and personal needs. It was recommended that guidance coordinators should provide counselling services to students periodically to equip them with life skills and decision making skills to solve problems.
Soft Skills Preparation as Panacea for Self-Employment for Tvet Technician Graduates in Kenya (Published)
The main aim of the paper was to assess how effect of soft skills on self-employment among Technical and Vocational Education and Training technician graduates in Kenya. The specific soft skills investigated in this study were practice time management, solve problems, work independently, interpersonal skills, communication skills, decision making skill, creativity/innovations and adaptability on self-employment among TVET graduates. This study was based on pragmatic research paradigm using embedded research design. The study targeted 527 technician graduate from TVET institutions in Uasin Gishu county Kenya. Simple random was used to select 320 sample size. Quantitative data analysis was done using descriptive statistics and inferential statistics. The interview transcripts were analysed using thematic analysis. Multiple Regression analysis was done to test hypothesis. Findings showed that TVET institutions did not inculcate soft skills content required for survival in self-employment. The generic skills tested were ranked from highly perceived as good to the least good: time management, ability to solve problems, ability to work autonomously, interpersonal skills, communication skills, decision making, creativity and innovative skills, and adaptability. However, despite time management being ranked the highest it had no effect on self-employment. Regression results revealed that ability to solve problems, ability to work independently, interpersonal skills, adaptability and creativity and innovations have a positive and significant effect on self-employment.
The Influence of Communication Proficiency to Student’s Academic Performance in Financial Management Course (Published)
English language has been the primary language of communication in financial services such as banking, stock trading, insurance, investment banking, asset and company valuations, among others. It has also become a basic skill needed for a workforce. The ability to communicate using this language is very essential for a business leader to succeed internationally. As future financial managers, students who are taking Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Major in Financial Management is expected to possess a strong foundation on theory, principles and concepts, as well as analytical skills, perception, and competencies necessary for successful financial decision-making in the business world. Based on observations, majority of students are performing below average on the said course because they find it difficult to understand the exercises, case studies, and financial scenarios. These issues spurred the researcher to examine whether their proficiency in English course significantly influences their academic performance in Financial Management course. The study used descriptive correlational research method in order to test the relationship between the academic performance in two English courses and Financial Management Course of 4th year BSBA Financial Management students Batch 2015-2016. A total of 75 BSBA Financial Management students was used in the study. The research instrument of the study was their final grades in three courses involved. Based on the results, there was a weak positive relationship between the students’ academic performance in both Communication Courses and Financial Management course. However, Communication Skills Courses does not significantly influences the academic performance of the students in Financial Management Course. It also showed that there were no significant differences in the academic performance of the students in Communication Skills Courses and Financial Management Course when they are grouped according to gender. Since the result shows that Communication Skills Courses has a relationship with the academic performance of students in Financial Management, it is recommended that Communication Skills Courses should be aligned more on communication activities applicable to business environment rather than using elementary English. College students should be exposed more on business terminologies for them to have a better capability of grasping the knowledge in other business subjects. It is also recommended that the College of Business Administration of Bulacan State University should also establish course objectives to Communication Skills Courses that is more relative to business setting rather than adapting the generic course objectives of English courses. Teachers are also influencing academic performance of students. Lastly, it is recommended that English Teachers should attend courses, workshops, or seminars on communication skills that is applicable on business setting in order to channel this knowledge to their students.