THE NEED FOR AN EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION SYSTEM IN TEACHING AND LEARNING (E-LEARNING)
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
According to DfES e-Learning Strategy Unit (2003), e-Learning exploits interactive technologies and communication systems to improve the learning experience. It has the potential to transform the way people teach and learn across the board. It can raise standards, and widen participation in lifelong learning. It cannot replace teachers and lecturers, but alongside existing methods it can enhance the quality and reach of their teaching, and reduce the time spent on administration. It can enable every learner to achieve his or her potential, and help to build an educational workforce empowered to change. It makes possible a truly ambitious education system for a future learning society. It is on this note of positive advantages of e-learning and the need for an effective communication system in teaching and learning that necessitated this research.
Technology has revolutionized the way people work and is now set to transform education. Children cannot be effective in tomorrow’s world if they are trained in yesterday’s skills. Nor should teachers be denied the tools that other professionals take for granted (Tony Blair, 1998).
According to Paige (2002), a click of a mouse button provides any student anywhere with unprecedented opportunities to learn. So if a child in Grand Junction wants to master Japanese, it’s possible online. If a budding artist in Five Points wants to study the masterpieces of the Louvre, it’s possible online. If a future Stephen Hawking in La Junta wants to study Gravitational Entrophy with the man himself, it’s possible online. If military parents want continuity in their children’s education throughout frequent moves to serve our country, then it’s possible online.’
Since the Internet was adopted and further developed as a means of communication by educational institutions in the 1970s, academics have been aware of its massive potential as a learning tool (Horton, 2005). In recent years, governments of both developed and under-developed nations have become increasingly excited about the possibilities of e-learning to deliver cost effective, easily accessible and ever-current education to all ages and social backgrounds, regardless of time and geography.
E-learning has been a useful tool for an effective communication system in teaching and learning (Jung, 2002). E-Learning is the employment of technology to aid and enhance learning. It can be as simple as secondary school students watching a video documentary in class or as complex as an entire university course provided online. e-Learning began decades ago with the introduction of televisions and over-head projectors in classrooms and has advanced to include interactive computer programmes, 3D simulations, video and telephone conferencing and real-time online discussion groups comprised of students from all over the world. As technology advances, so does e-learning, making the possibilities accruable from it endless (Olaniyi, 2006).
Education is regarded as one of the most important factors for poverty reduction and economic growth in developing countries but effective communication system is needed for teaching and learning to ensure quality education. The use of effective Communication System for dissemination of education is considered to have great potential for the government that is seeking to satisfy a growing demand for education while facing a deficiency of teachers (Rich, 2008). Today, the development of the communication system into a worldwide, high-speed, multimedia communication platform (internet) has enabled the development of e-Learning as an effective teaching and learning mechanism. E-Learning started to have an important role in creating and promoting learning communities due to the new and effective communication tools that provides more accessibility and efficiency in the learning process, for both teachers and learners.
E-Learning includes numerous types of media that deliver text, audio, images, animation, and streaming video, and includes technology applications and processes such as audio or video tape, satellite TV, CD-ROM, and computer-based learning, as well as local intranet/extranet and web-based learning (Suleiman, 2012). All these devices are tools that enhance effective communication in schools. Effective communication systems, whether free-standing or based on either local networks or the Internet in networked learning, underlay many e-Learning processes. The researcher is thereby examining the need for the devices to promote effective communication system in teaching and learning in Emmanuel College, Owerri.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
For a very long time successive governments in Nigeria have consistently formulated Policies which were directed towards ensuring that there are equal and adequate educational opportunities at all levels. In view of these, the government has also realized the need for an effective communication system in teaching and learning in secondary schools. These can be seen in their investment in communications gadgets for schools. But the researcher is of the opinion that these communication gadgets are only available in schools for few students. The researcher is therefore examining the effect of an effective communication system (e-learning) on teaching and learning. Moreover, several studies has been carried out on the communications systems, ICT, teaching and learning and even e-learning all over the world but no research of such has been conducted in Emmanuel College, Owerri.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The following are the objectives of this study:
- To examine the need for the use of effective communication system in teaching and learning in Emmanuel Secondary school Owerri.
- To examine the impact of e-learning on effective teaching and learning at Emmanuel College, Owerri.
- To determine the level of use of e-learning and other effective communication tools in Emmanuel College, Owerri.
- To examine the factors limiting the students access to e-learning tools in Emmanuel College, Owerri.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
- Is there a need for the use of effective communication system in teaching and learning in Emmanuel Secondary school Owerri?
- What is the impact of e-learning on effective teaching and learning at Emmanuel College, Owerri?
- What is the level of use of e-learning and other effective communication tools in Emmanuel College, Owerri?
- What are the factors limiting the students access to e-learning tools in Emmanuel College, Owerri?
HO: There is no significant relationship between the use of e-learning tools and effective teaching and learning at Emmanuel College, Owerri.
HA: There is significant relationship between the use of e-learning tools and effective teaching and learning at Emmanuel College, Owerri.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The following are the significance of this study:
- The results from this study will be useful to the government of Nigeria and policy makers in education on the need for an effective communication system for teaching and learning in secondary schools in the country especially the rural areas. It will also educate the need for massive investments in provision of e-learning tools like computers, TV, internet access, etc for secondary school students to aid effective teaching and learning.
- This research will be a contribution to the body of literature in the area of the need for an effective communication system in teaching and learning and e-learning, thereby constituting the empirical literature for future research in the subject area.
1.7 SCOPE/LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
This study is limited to Emmanuel College, Owerri. It will cover the school’s needs in communication information system and the consequences they suffer for not having such gadgets. It will also cover the school’s level of application of e-learning
LIMITATION OF STUDY
Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
Horton, W. (2005). Leading e-learning; http://www.e-learningguru.com ASTD, pg.1.
Jung, I. (2002). Issues and Challenges of Providing Online In-services Teacher Training:Korea’s Experience. http://www.irrodl.org/content/v2.1/jung.pdf.
Olaniyi, S. S. (2006). E-Learning Technology: The Nigeria Experience p.2-3. A paper presented at the Shape the Change XXIII FIG Congress Munich, Germany, October 8-13, 2006.
Olomo R.O. (2001). Mapping and the Internet; challenges and opportunities in Nigeria.
Rich, M. (2008). Literacy Debate: Online, R U Really Reading? The New York Times.
Rod Paige, US Secretary of Education, 2002
Suleiman, A. A. (2012). essentialities for e-learning: the Nigerian tertiary institutions in question. Journal of Academic Research International. Volume 2.
The DfES e-Learning Strategy Unit, 2003: Towards a Unified e-Learning Strategy