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PROJECT TOPIC: ANALYSIS OF THE ROLES OF RADIO IN IMPROVING THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1     Background of the Study

Radio has a long and productive history in development, particularly in non-formal education related to other development sectors such as health and agriculture. It has a less convincing history in service to formal education. There are a number of reasons for its mixed performance. In many instances, radio was inadequately planned for and inexpertly used as a medium. In others, it was seen as mere window-dressing for the more substantial content of courses.

Research project using radio as the major medium of instruction suggest that a more intensive use of radio results in both better radio and better instruction. Radio’s strengths and its cost-effectiveness can be used effectively to meet expanding educational needs in developing countries without a loss in the quality of education.

According Butcher (2003) “radio has been used in education ever since it became available”. Pennycuick (1993), of the Centre for International Education at the University of Sussex, states a bit more specifically that interactive radio instruction (IRI) is characterized by “highly coordinated” instructional materials and delivery strategies, and includes elements of active participation on the part of the students. He goes on to say that IRI “is effective, is cost-effective, and teachers are enthusiastic about it” (Pennycuick, 1993).

In support of this, the South African Institute for Distance Education (2004) stated that “radio remains the key media to which most rural people have access” and that educational radio initiatives in South Africa were “effective in providing topical programmes and reaching large numbers of learners rapidly”. Going further, they state that “the impact of the radio programmes was greater when used with other text-based materials, such as posters and comics”.

In response to the educational needs of rural poor populations throughout the developing world, there are several large-scale operations conducting radio education projects. The Freeplay Foundation, the developers of the Lifeline Wind-up/Solar-Powered Radio, “is committed to …ensuring sustained access to information and education via radio” (Freeplay Foundation, n.d.). According to the Freeplay Foundation’s website, “radio is the primary medium of communication in developing countries, where most people live below the poverty line (and), therefore, is the lifeline of information.” In support of its goals, the Free play Foundation has distributed radios in countries as diverse as Afghanistan, Indonesia and Zambia, among others. As part of this process, the Free play Foundation “collaborates with in-country non-governmental organisation (NGOs), government ministries, international organisation and broadcasters to ensure radio information and education reaches the widest possible rural populations.” In order to do this, the foundation works with international and local broadcasters to assure that the content is appropriate. In addition, the foundation works with local populations to facilitate the creation of listening groups, distributing radios, and evaluating the impact of the programming. Therefore, this study focuses on the analysis of the roles of radio in improving the educational system in Lagos state.

1.2     Statement of the Problem

The need for improving the educational system in Lagos cannot be overemphasized and the role of radio in making this possible has not be felt. The mass media is expected to play an important role in improving the educational system in the society but over the years the reverse has been the case. Most of the unruly acts carried out by most students were learnt from the mass media. The case of robbery, truancy, theft, rape, pickpocket and other crimes have been traced to the exposure of youths to mass media.

Although successful in many conformal situations, radio has not always lived up to expectations as an instructional medium. Where it has been used as a substitute for classroom instruction or even as augmentation of classroom instruction, it has often been found lacking and, in many cases, has been abandoned. McAnany (1973) points out a number of instructional radio’s constraints and suggests some reasons for the failure of projects to provide convincing evidence of radio’s effectiveness. The failures are generally not the fault of radio as a medium, and the interest in radio’s potential for this paper examines very instruction in developing countries remains high.

Introduction of educational radio is expected to help improve the educational system in the society but the cost implication of realizing this has made it almost impossible. Most families find it very difficult to procure an educational radio in order to educate every member of the family. These problems make it glaring that there is a need to carry out an analysis of the roles of radio in improving the educational system in Lagos state.

1.3     Objectives of the Study

The general objective of this study is carry out an analysis of the roles of radio in improving the educational system in Lagos state, using Ikorodu LGA as a case study. The specific objectives are:

1.     To find out the level of accessibility of students to radio programs in Ikorodu LGA of Lagos state.

2.     To ascertain if there are educational programs on Radio stations.

3.     To find out if the public truly appreciate the radio programme on its efforts of educating the masses.

4.     To determine if radio stations influence the perception of students towards achieving academic excellence.

5.     To ascertain the extent to which the programme has improved human life 1especially amongst the youths in the areas of comprehension and speaking abilities, behavior and character.

1.4     Research Questions

The relevant research questions related to this study are:

1.     What is the level of accessibility of students to radio programs in Ikorodu LGA of Lagos state?

2.     Are there educational programs on Radio stations?

3.     Does the public truly appreciate the radio programme on its efforts of educating the masses?

4.     Do radio stations influence the perception of students towards achieving academic excellence?

5.     What is the extent to which the programme has improved human life especially amongst the youths in the areas of comprehension and speaking abilities, behavior and character?

1.5     Significance of the Study

This study is guide necessary bearing in mind that the world is ever changing and developing.  In western world, the use of computers to educate the population and give them wider knowledge of the world is very much accessible.  This makes them to be scientifically, technologically, educationally and socially developed.  Nigeria as we know, cannot be compared to the western world and this bring about the need for the public to be educated; those who were not opportune, to enroll into various Institutions of learning.

The result of the study will help to find other ways of improving the programme and educating the masses.

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