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ATTITUDE OF STUDENT TEACHERS TOWARDS TEACHING PRACTICE

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A CASE STUDY OF COLLEGE OF EDUCATION, WARRI, DELTA STATE

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the Study

Pre-historically, it is conceived that there was an aspect of teaching and learning either from examples or through trial and error processes. The sources through which learning is made possible could be either a human or an abstract phenomenon. As such the availability of a source connotes the idea of a teacher. The teacher is seen as a surrogate and a reservoir of knowledge in our historic era. For his knowledge to be of use to others, there must be a process through which it is imparted.

Knowledge dissemination is through a process know as teaching which refers to the act of imparting knowledge, ideas and attitude to those available for learning. Embedded in this concept is that teaching would not take place unless students are learning and in order to know what teachers are teaching, teachers also have to understand what students are learning from them.

The implication of the purpose of teaching is that teaching represents learning by design where the result are measurable (Awotua – Efebo, 1999). Awotua -Efebo (1999) opined that teaching is a human undertaking whose purpose is to help people learn. He further stated that it is an interaction between a teacher and a student under the teacher’s responsibility, in order to bring about an expected change in the student’s behaviour.

The development of any country all over the world has continued to be intricately tied to educational development in which the teacher is the critical element (Ejima, 2012). Ejima (2012) further stated that the quality of a teacher depends on his or her preparation for professional role as a distinct practitioner. The preparation of teachers in Nigeria is done through the colleges of education, the National Teachers Institute (NTI) and Faculties of Education in Nigeria Universities. The institutions meant for the preparation of teachers have teaching practice as a part of their training which is often earmarked for a specific period of time. A period where teachers-in-training are posted to schools to teach, demonstrate in practical terms the knowledge and skills they have acquired during training.

Teaching practice is a situation where a student teacher is given the opportunity to try the act of teaching before actually getting into the real world of the teaching profession: The classroom It grants student teachers experience in the actual teaching and learning environment (Njidi & Sikaya, 2003). It is an important course undergone by students who are about entering the teaching profession where they are expected to exhibit the theoretical skills obtained during the course in the institution into practical situation in real life. Kiggundu and Najimuli (2009) citing the south African Norms and standards for Education (2002) stated that teaching practice is meant to provide for the authentic context within which student teachers are exposed to experiences of the complexities and richness of the reality of being a teacher. They further stated that it could become a demoralizing and sometimes very frightening experience.

Teaching practice is a means through which a student’s suitability for the teaching profession is measured in the University of Uyo or elsewhere. The faculty of Education organises it in compliance with the rules of the senate of the University and the National University Commission (NUC). For all first-degree students in the faculty of education, the programme is in two phases of six weeks each which normally takes place after the second semester’s examination of the students’ second year and third year in the University. The Faculty of Education begins the preparation by writing letter to secondary schools seeking their consent to send students about going to teaching practice. The feedback from the schools would enabled the faculty of education properly allocate the number of students teachers per school. A coordinator assisted by other members of the faculty staff ensures that the teaching practice exercise is successful.

Students teachers are expected take certain courses before going for teaching practice. These courses, such as educational technology, special methods and micro teaching as well as other related courses are organized in order to give perfection to the teaching assignment of the student teachers. Student teachers are given log book when proceeding to the school they are posted. This book is expected to be given to the supervisory teacher the student teacher is attached to work with, in order to assess him/her. The book is also given to the lecturers who are supervisors of the student teachers from the faculty of education. Student teachers are supposed to be supervised at least twice (in each teaching practing session). The principal of the school is later given the booklet to assess the student teachers. Finally, the Teaching Practice (TP) Coordinator and few support staffs check and ascertain if the student had been properly monitored.

The lecturers supervising students are also given teaching practice evaluation form by the TP coordinator for assessing the students. The form requires personal information of each student teacher (name, registration number, programme/course, department, level of study), name of school of practice and date of supervision. The student teachers are expected to be evaluated according to lesson planning/notes, lesson delivery, management and assessment of learning, instructional materials and personal qualities.

A period during and after teaching practice creates mix-feelings in the minds of the students teachers. Some have the feeling of nostalgia while others complain of the challenges they face having under gone the rigorous movement from where they are posted to the university campus for either registration, payment of fees, just to mention some. The mix-feelings of students’ teachers also arise as a result of the geographical distance, low and uneven level of teacher expertise, non payment of any sort of allowance, desirable attitude or behaviour from supervising teachers in the school.

Student teachers tend to have different attitude during and after teaching practice. They tend to respond either positively or negatively to the situation. Maliki (2013) opined that individual’s attitudes toward their profession have an effect on their performance and it affects their competence and achievement. Attitude is an important attribute towards any profession. This is why Maliki (2013) stated that the belief someone has about any particular job determined the success of that person in the profession.

 

Statement of the problem

Development of education with the development of human civilization is found to be made from one generation to another generation. In medivial period education used to be given sitting on the open ground or yard of the house. In todays age of modernization and globalization, education plays a vital role in development of culture, society and country.

Education is an essential factor for the development of personality and active manpower. Globalization has made the world narrow and like a single. Demand of a man power can be fulfilled by the organization from any corner of the world. Expert and quality manpower can be developed by the trained teacher through right education. In the one hand, unemployment problem is increasing and in the other hand there is lack of trained educated and experts manpower in the work. Teaching practicing is an important tool for success in any area of teacher education. It affords the student teachers the opportunity to plan, teach and evaluate, and practice the art of teaching. According to Abdullahi (2010), A good teaching practicum should stimulate student teachers to be greatly committed to the attainment of excellence and the process should furthermore enable them to be more serious and devoted to work to professional expectation. The University of Uyo student teachers instead of being stimulated to be greatly committed have always come with the problem of constant complaints after every teaching practice. This necessitated the research work into the attitude of student teachers towards teaching practice exercise in the university.

This study was mainly concerned with the study of student teachers towards teaching practice. Teaching practice is taken as practical knowledge to the students studying under faculty of education. Teaching practice is an important subject of education faculty. It plays an important role in the educational development of students. It was existence by the time of starting study of education. Every sector has become professional and competitive because of globalization. All the students have been competent in their own subject matter. There is competition in the field of education too. It is found that research on teaching practice has not been made till now. So this study helps to understand about the appropriateness, usefulness and sufficiency of the teaching practice course. This study was helpful to explore the suggestion given by them during the time of teaching practice.

  • What is the attitude of student teachers towards teaching practice course?
  • Is there any significance difference between the attitude of male student-teachers and female student-teachers towards teaching practice course?

Objectives of the problem

The objectives of the study were as follows

  • To find out the attitude of student-teachers towards teaching practice course.
  • To compare the attitude of male student-teachers and female student teachers towards teaching practice course.

Significance of the study

The benefit that could be derived from the outcome of this research work are as follows-:

  • It could provide the student teachers with useful information on likely problems they are going to face during teaching practice and to make them prepared to overcome these problems.
  • It could make the student teacher to be, and are of what the teaching profession demands and what it takes to be a good teacher and function properly in a school environment.
  • It enables the supervision and teaching organizers to know the various problems student teachers face during teaching practice.
  • The State and Federal Ministries of Education would be aware of the problems student teachers encounter whenever they are out on teaching practice and this would enable then to provide lasting solution to those problems. Finally all outcome of this would increase the volume of literature for student teacher

 

Research hypothesis

Ho:   There is no significance difference between male student-teachers and female student   teachers.

H1:   There is significance difference between male student-teachers and female student   teachers.

Definition of Terms

Student teacher: Student-teachers are those person who participate in teaching practice of education in Bachelor Degree.

Attitude: A setted way of thinking of feeling upon a particular subject. A predisposition or a tendency to respond positively or negatively towards a certain idea, object, person or situation. Attitude influences an individuals choice of actions and response to challenges, incentives and rewards. The attitude is the way a person, behavior that employs an individual to make things. In this sense, can say that it is way of being or act, behavior also can be considered some from of social motivation.

Rodriguez defined attitude as a testing organizations belifs and cognitions in general, endowed with an emotional charge in favour or against a defined object which predisposes to consistent action with congitions and emotions relating to that object. Attitude are considered inter current variables, not be directly observable but subject to observable  inferences in the process of cognitive, emotional, behaviourable.

Practice: A school or college course, especially one in a specialized field of study, which is designed to give students, supervised practical application of previously studied theory.

Student teaching: Student teaching is a period that student teachers spend teaching at a college/campus under the supervision of an experienced teacher as part of his or her training.

Professionalism: The skill, good judgment, and polite behavior that is expected from a person who is trained to do a job well. The Merriam Webstar Dictionary defines professionalism defines as “the conduct aims or qualities that characterize or mark a profession or a professional person and it. This definition implies that professionalism emphasis a number different attributes and together these attributes identify and defines a professional.

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