PROMOTING ENTREPRENEURSHIP SKILLS AND SELF-RELIANCE THROUGH SOCIAL STUDIES EDUCATION AMONG NIGERIA CERTIFICATE IN EDUCATION (NCE) STUDENTS IN KADUNA STATE, NIGERIA
The study specifically aims to investigate the opinion of NCE Social Studies students, male and female, NCE II and NCE III students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies Education in Kaduna State among others. The research questions and null hypotheses were stated based on the objectives raised. The study used survey research design and 328 out of the total number of 2186 NCEII and NCEIII Social Studies students of NCE from Federal College of Education, Zaria and Kaduna state College of Education Gidan-waya, Kaduna State, were selected through purposive sampling technique as sample in the study. “Social Studies Questionnaire on Promoting Entrepreneurship Skills and Self-reliance” (SOSQPESS) was used as data collection instrument. The instrument was duly validated by supervisors. The data analysis tools were percentage and frequency counts, mean and standard deviation and independent t-test samples. All hypotheses were tested at 0.05 alpha. The study revealed that there is no significant difference in the mean opinion scores of NCE students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies education in Kaduna State on the basis of their gender and study level while significant difference was discovered in the mean opinion scores of Federal and State COE students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies Education in Kaduna State. In the light of the above, the study recommends among other things that, there is the need for government and Non – government Organizations (NGOs) to create a more enabling environment for students to inculcate entrepreneurship culture as well as ensuring their access to finance, mentorship and other basic needs that would enhance their capacities to achieve a successful career in entrepreneurship for sustainable socio-economic development of the society.
1.1 Background to the Study
Education remains a pivot upon which the wheels of society revolve. It is a mechanism for social and economic development of the people, which contributes to economic growth by eradicating poverty through career training, job specification and wealth creation. Both the developed and developing countries‟ education system is thus expected to device appropriate strategies for equipping individuals with skills, knowledge, motivation, positive attitudes, innovation for self reliance to cope with the problems of poverty, underemployment, and unemployment. According to Okafor (2003) education refers to “a way of transmitting knowledge, skills, values and attitudes which enable the child to be useful citizen in the society”. From this definition, it is obvious that the essence of education is functionality. Section 1 paragraph 7b of the National Policy on Education (2004) emphasizes that the national educational goals is the acquisition of appropriate skills and development of mental, physical and social abilities and competencies as equipment for the individual to live and contribute to the development of the society. This section of the NPE is also in harmony with the position of Okafor (2003). The essence of any educational goal is to ensure that the products of the system are equipped with the relevant knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to contribute meaningfully to the development of the nation.
In recent times, Nigerian youths particularly graduates are presently facing serious unemployment problems more than ever before. This is due to several factors one of which is since students often have no clear idea of what they want to do after graduation. It is on this premise that Agi and Arikawei (2011) reported that over 200,000 graduates are produced each
year, only 25% are absorbed in the labour market. The remaining 75% are left in the labour market perpetually looking for jobs, with the resultant increased armed-robbery, kidnapping, insurgency and other social vices in the polity. The inability of the Social Studies graduates and other products of our educational system to contribute meaningfully to the economic development by being self-employed was what informed the introduction of Entrepreneurship Education across the three tiers of tertiary institutions of the country. This programme was perceived as a sure way of remedying the current unemployment challenge due to the government‟s inability to absorb all the graduates from the nation‟s tertiary institutions (Ediagbonya, 2013). Thus, it is against this background, the researcher deems it fit to examine the role of Social Studies education in promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance among students in Colleges of Education in Kaduna State.
Entrepreneurship education has continued to feature as a captivating theme in local and international conferences because of its potency as a tool for mitigating unemployment and other socio-economic challenges inhibiting sustainable development in all parts of the globe. Inclusion of entrepreneurship education into curricula of tertiary institutions started in the United States of America as far back as 1947 (Kuratko, 2003). Entrepreneurship refers to an individual‟s ability to turn ideas into action. It includes creativity, innovation and risk taking, as well as the ability to plan and manage projects in order to achieve the desired objective. The Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC) (2004) cited in Gwija, Eresia-Eke & Iwu (2014) consider entrepreneurship education as a comprehensive term referring to those aspects of education at process involving, in addition to general education, the study of technology related sciences and the acquisition of entrepreneurial
skills, attitudes, understanding and knowledge relating occupations in various sectors of economic and social life.
In addition, the essence of entrepreneurship education is to equip learners with entrepreneurial skills to enable them create, run and succeed in business start-up. According to Van-der kuip and Verheul (2003) views entrepreneurial core skills as “those capacities that constitute the basic necessary and sufficient conditions for the pursuit of effective entrepreneurial behaviour individually, organizationally and societal in an increasingly turbulent and global environment. They added that the entrepreneurial skills that should be taught include: intuitive decision making creative problem solving, managing interdependency on a know-how basis, ability to conclude deals, strategic thinking, project management, time management, persuasion, selling, negotiation and motivating people by setting an example.
Nigeria adopted entrepreneurship education to accelerate economic growth and development. This reflects in Nigeria‟s National Policy on Education which states that education is the most important instrument for propelling change, as no fundamental change can occur in any society except through educational revolution that impact on the intellect (Federal Government of Nigeria, 1998). To that effect, the Federal Ministry of Education directed that entrepreneurship education be included as part of the curricula of the University, Polytechnics and Colleges of Education through the National Universities Commission (NUC), National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) and National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE) effective from 2007/2008 academic session (ILO, 2010; Gabadeen and Raimi, 2012). Social Studies as a school subject has a vital role to play towards the success of entrepreneurship education.
Social Studies is a value laden course of instruction meant to equip the learner with cognition, values, attitudes and functional skills to survive in an ever dynamic society, replete with sporadic changes in information , technology, values and knowledge. According to Mezieobi (2011) Social Studies is a reformatory school instruction designed to equip learners with desirable attitudes, values, skills and knowledge for cohesive social existence in the Nigeria society‟‟. Social Studies as an integrated area of study is designed to produce effective citizens as well as inculcate attitudes and skills for utilization of environmental resources for survival of man (Oyibe, 2015). Thus, the idea of Social Studies education in the inculcation of functional skills (entrepreneurship) as part of its curriculum towards achieving self-reliance objectives, will contribute in no small measure as the subject seeks to identify and solve societal problems using critical and creative thinking. Social Studies education comes handy here because it is geared towards producing effective citizens that will support the notion of nation building by way of classroom dispensation of content areas carefully selected from arts and social science. The subject helps the learners to appreciate man‟s problems and encourage them to solve such problem through critical thinking and rational decision making (enquiry).
Moreover, Social Studies Education has been identified as a potent instrument that can facilitate the attainment of national development goals through the production of responsible citizens that will contribute maximally to the overall development of the society. This can be attained from the citizens‟ behavioural dispositions and inculcation of socio-economic skills which includes: honesty, dedication forthrightness, hard work, productivity, entrepreneurship and self- reliance. By its very nature as multidisciplinary subject, Social Studies education is useful for national development, as well the development of the right attitudes and values which are needed for developing entrepreneurial skills (Lawal and Muhammad, 2014). From the foregoing, this study therefore focused on gender, study level and institution‟s type on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies education among NCE students in colleges of Education in Kaduna State, Nigeria.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Social Studies Education in Nigeria like any other country in the world is aimed at inculcation of the right type of knowledge, attitudes, values, norms and etiquettes of the society in the learners to enable them emerge as functional mechanism for the transmission and development of pertinent attitudes and skills for the survival of younger generations. The philosophy of Social Studies education is meant to equip learners with knowledge, competences and skills necessary for the understanding and appreciation of societal problems with a view to finding workable solutions to such problems. Through imparting of the right type of knowledge, values and skills, Social Studies serves as a potent tool for producing graduates so vibrant and efficient as well as capable of creating jobs rather than job seekers within their immediate environment.
Hence, the researcher of the present study perceived that under the prevailing circumstance, it is disturbing to see a high number of graduates of Social Studies and other related disciplines in continuous search for jobs, littering along the streets seeking for white collar jobs that are hard to come by. This ugly trend of graduate unemployment led to rise in poverty and crimes such as thuggery, youth restiveness, insurgency, cultism, armed robbery, cattle rustling and other anti-social behaviour associated with unemployment. This is against the philosophy of self-reliance preached by Social Studies i.e. inculcation of desirable skills knowledge and competences with a view to make education more relevant, practical and goal oriented. It is in the light of the above, this study aimed at investigating how promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance may be promoted through the opinions of NCE students in colleges of education in Kaduna State on the basis of their gender, study level and proprietorship.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The major objective of this study is to investigate into how entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance are being promoted through Social Studies education from the viewpoints of NCE students of colleges of education in Kaduna State, Nigeria. More importantly, this study intends to achieve the following objectives:
- To investigate the opinion of male and female NCE Social Studies students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies Education in Kaduna State.
- To find out the opinion of NCE II and NCE III Social Studies students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies Education in Kaduna state.
- To find out the differences in the opinion of NCE Social Studies students in the Federal College of Education Zaria and College of Education Gidan-waya on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies education in Kaduna State.
1.4 Research Questions
Based on the above stated objectives, the following questions are asked.
- What is the mean opinion scores of male and female NCE Social Studies students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies education in Kaduna in State?
- What is the level of differences in the mean opinion scores of NCE II and NCE III Social Studies students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies education in Kaduna State?
- To what extent does the mean opinion scores of Federal College of students Education, Zaria and College of Education Gidan waya NCE Social Studies students differ towards promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies education in Kaduna state?
1.5 Null Hypotheses
The study was guided by the following null hypotheses and tested at p ≤ 05:
Ho1: There is no significant difference in the mean opinion scores of male and female NCE Social Studies students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies education in Kaduna State.
Ho2: There is no significant difference in the mean opinion scores of NCE II and NCE III Social Studies students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies education in Kaduna state.
Ho3: There is no significant difference in the mean opinion scores of Federal College Of Education Zaria and College State Of Education Gidan-waya NCE Social Studies students on promoting entrepreneurship skills and self-reliance through Social Studies education in Kaduna State.
1.6 Significance of the Study
The significance of this study cannot be over-emphasized because its benefits to the students and people are holistic. These include:
It will be beneficial to youths/students through the acquisition of skills, knowledge capable of creation of wealth as well as make them become employers of labour, by so doing, they can contribute immensely to the national development. Teachers will find the research finding as motivating factor for enhancing the spirit of hard work for self employment to our prospective graduating students in the society. Parents, community/religious leaders will benefit from the study as it will reduce the rate of social vices among its unemployed who some cases turn into nuisance. Information can help them identify and use the available resources within their immediate surrounding for economic development of the society.
Guidance and counseling personnel in our schools will get the findings of this study worthy as it will serve as a guide to help students to solve their socio-economic challenges in order to continue their pursuit for education without relying on sponsorship from anybody. Curriculum designers will also benefit from the findings of the study to make adjustment where necessary in the NCCE and NERDC minimum standard in line with the need for promoting entrepreneurship education and self reliance among NCE students in Nigeria.
In addition, for the government as policy makers it will provide information that will guide them in planning and funding the program that will empower the people towards self-reliance as the findings will also assist the government towards achieving the goal reducing graduate unemployment and poverty reduction as one of the cardinal goals of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). To other stakeholders, especially Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), the research findings and recommendations will include strategies for making Nigerian youths productive and enterprising for national development. Finally, the findings of the study is hoped to serve as reference point for further research by would - be researchers on the role of Social Studies education for the attainment of attitudes and values for self-reliance as well as entrepreneurship spirit among Nigerian students for Socio-economic development of the country.
1.7 Scope of the Study
The study is delimited to NCE Social Studies students of in Federal College of Education, Zaria and Kaduna State College of Education Gidan-waya Kafanchan. The NCE II and NCE III Social Studies students for 2015/2016 academic session from the aforementioned institutions are selected for this study because of their unique position in the pursuit of objectives of Social Studies in Nigeria at NCE level where these students are trained mainly to teach in primary and junior secondary schools in the country.