EFFECT OF MODERN TECHNOLOGY ON SECRETARIAL PROFESSION: FOCUS ON SOME TERTIARY INSTITUTIONS IN EKITI STATE.
Background of the Study
The emergence of information and communication technology (ICT) has totally revolutionized the way we access, process, and store, retrieve and disseminate information within organizations or across the globe. Information and communication technology encompasses a range of technologies and application systems of microprocessors that have had profound impact on society and its way of life. The impact of ICT is becoming pronounced worldwide in such a way that there is nothing that would be mentioned in any area of human endeavour without reference to it.
The task of a secretary in the acquisition, processing, storage, retrieval and dissemination of information depends on the availability of relevant office technologies such as computer, cell-phone, reprography, micrograph, the skills and competencies. The dissemination of the information can be effectively accomplished through the application of requisite technology. Today’s government offices, and modern business organizations have come to appreciate the role and importance of the secretary as well as the need to provide the needed and necessary office machines and equipment for the efficiency of the secretarial functions. Information is power, it is a critical element for decision-making and it is the baseline of every great success in life. Information can be said to be the backbone of any organization. Information is the link that ties all branches or components of an organization for better operation and co-ordination. Information is a processed data endowed with meaning and purpose (Armstrong, 2004 and Bamidele, 2006).
Teaching of secretarial studies entails the use of visual aids in lessons, using a catalogue of useful visual aids that are good for teaching secretarial studies that is pictures, graphs, diagrams, charts and tables, as well as awaken students’ interest by giving them something practical works that broaden their knowledge.
More importantly, secretarial studies prepare students to contribute positively to the rapid economic development of their nation through scientific innovations. In other words, it inculcates the spirit of inquiry so that students can base their decision on facts rather than more sentiment. The popularity of this subject among vocational technical students is evidenced by the increasing number of those who offer it in senior secondary school certificate examination of both WAEC and NECO. For student to reap the benefit of studying secretarial studies at school, they should be able to organize their learning efficiently. It has been observed that in their bid to do this, teachers must use the best method in imparting knowledge into the students using various teaching techniques and facilities in the like of modern information technology (ICT).
The use of information technology in the classroom can allow more time and space flexibility for lecturers and students to use the educational materials. It can also allow for continuous testing of students of the contents of such materials, and allow the students more freedom in taking initiatives, learn on their own, be more creative, and individually study at their own pace.
Information and communication technology (ICT) is an indispensable part of the contemporary world. In fact, culture and society have to be adjusted to meet the challenges of the information age. Information and communication technology (ICT) is a force that has changed many aspects of people’s ways of life. Considering such fields as medicine, tourism, travel, business, law, banking, engineering and architecture, the impact of ICT in the past two or three decades has been enormous.
ICT encompasses a range of applications, communications and technologies which aid information retrieval and research communication and administration. These include: Internet access, electronic mail, CD-ROMS, telephone, on line databases, library services and fax machines. It has become a global phenomenon of great importance and concern in all aspects of human endeavour, spanning across education, governance, business, labour, market, shares, productivity, trade, agriculture, commerce and others. Haddad and Draxier (2002) indicated that ICT contributed to effective learning through expanding access, promoting efficiency, improving the quality of learning and improving management systems. According to Obeng (2004), ICT is now regarded as a utility such as water and electricity and hence has become a major role in education, learning and research in general, agriculture, health, commerce and even in poverty alleviation by generating or creating new jobs and investment opportunities. ICT is an indispensable part of the contemporary world. The field of education has certainly been affected by the penetrating influence of ICT worldwide and in particular developed countries. ICT has made an impact on the quality and quantity of teaching, learning and research in the tradition and/or distance education institutions using it (Kwacha, 2007). According to Ololube, Ubogu and Ossai (2007), the introduction of ICT usage, integration and diffusion has initiated a new age in educational methodologies, thus it has radically changed traditional method of information delivery and usage patterns in the domain as well as offering contemporary learning experience for both teachers and students.
ICTs are composed of hardware, software, storage technology and other digital communication technologies. According to Zimmermann and Finger (2005) ICT leads to a redistribution of skills and redefinition of the operating modes by creating new opportunities and making obsolete old practices. It is generally considered that ICT has brought about considerable changes to systems and processes of working and that new method of working would be developed, and different skills would be required in work performance in dedicated offices. Before the emergence of modern information and communication technology (ICT) correspondences and some office jobs were done by secretaries, using manual typewriters that had no storage, editing or correcting devices.
Records management was totally manual with documents maintained neatly in file jackets and stocked in cabinets. Most of the jobs and functions were manually performed by secretaries in the civil service, however, in the ICT era, office tasks are now performed electronically. In general, secretaries are being equipped with skills in information and communication technology gadgets that never existed in the past. Retrieval of information is faster, neater and more reliable than the traditional filing system. Computerized planning of the diaries of many executives is now the rule than the exception. In terms of records management, ICT has taken over. On this basis, these secretaries are in a good position to champion the acquisition of computer and internet skills required for information and communication services (Nwogwugwu, 2006).
Idowu (2003) affirmed that ICT is a vehicle with the potential to improve the quality and quantity of productivity as well as the efficiency of the worker. Information and communication technologies have changed the phase of the world we live in. According to Adeniyi (2005), ICT has brought revolutionary changes that have ever affected the performance of secretaries. Technology in the view of Mohan (2007) simplifies human work, changes life-style and creates new civilization. Schaefer (2005) described technology as information about how to use the material resources of the environment to satisfy human needs and desires. The performance of a secretary depends on the output of her work using the new ICT equipment and facilities in the office; hence training is of paramount importance if she must perform effectively.
Secretaries cannot perform effectively without adequate provision of ICT equipment like computer, fax machines, addressing machines, shredding machines, decimate or multifunction machines that can copy, scan, fax and print.
All these modern technologies are essential to be incorporated into the teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in our colleges of education, most especially, College of Education, Ikere-Ekiti.
Statement of the Problem
As Nigeria is striving hard to play a leadership role in Africa, particularly in the period of pragmatic and competitive science and technology, there is an urgent need to pay more prominent attention to the improvement of teaching and learning particularly in Nigerian educational sectors. This entails the adoption of information, communication technology (ICT) in the institution. The ICT is an invaluable intervention of this modern time. Its inherent attributes such as accuracy, high speed performance, reliability and capability to store very large amount of data have made it possible for its applicability to all human endeavours including teaching, learning and research in educational institutions. This study is specifically set out to critically appraise the role of information, communication technology as a change agent for teaching of secretarial studies in College of Education, Ikere-Ekiti. It also examines the implication and challenges of ICT on the development of Secretarial Studies in College of Education in Nigeria as a whole.
As a tool for addressing challenges in teaching and learning, technology has the capabilities for delivery, management and support of effective teaching and learning. As a change agent, it is capable of changing the content, methods and overall quality and quantity of teaching and learning, thereby reducing teachers’ workload and ensuring constructivist inquiry-oriented classroom. Moreover, ICT a central force in economic and social shifts that has technology skill critical to future employment of today’s students. Thierer (2000) pointed out that the role of technology in teaching and learning is rapidly becoming one of the most important and widely discussed issues in contemporary education policy. Experts in the fields of education have agreed that, if ICT is properly used, it holds great promise to improve teaching and learning in addition to shaping work-force opportunities. Thus, this research is specifically set out to critically appraise the role played by information, communication technology (ICT) as a catalyst in the effective learning and teaching of Secretarial Studies in College of Education, Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State.
Statement of the Problem
Undoubtedly, education is bedrock of any society, regardless of its discipline. Information Communication Technology (ICT) relevance and positive effects as instructional resource for the teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in College of Education, Ikere-Ekiti is a noticeable improvement among the various institutions and academic output. It is noted that uses of ICT equipment in teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in College of Education, Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State, does not only assist the lecturers in carrying out their job effectively but also render qualitative service output to the entire academic community of the Nation.
In view of this, the researcher tends to shed more lights on the actual impact of ICT and hindrances’ to the effective usage of ICT in the teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State.
Purpose of the Study
Despite the introduction of modern ICT equipment, this research work will investigate into the effects (both positives and negatives) of ICT on the teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State. The major aim of this study is to:
- Study the relevance of ICT in the effective teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State.
- To find out the problems of ICT in the teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State.
iii. To suggest an improve channels to effective utilization of ICT in the teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State.
In view of this study, the following research questions have been formulated to ascertain how ICT could have been a catalyst to effective use of information by Secretarial Studies lecturers and students:
- Is ICT relevant in the effective teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State?
- Is there any significant difference between the usage of ICT and the academic performance of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State?
- Is there any significant difference between the effective utilization of ICT and student’s academic performance in Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State?
- H01. Modern ICT facilities are relevant to the teaching-learning process of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State.
- H02 . There is no significant relationship between usage of Modern ICT facilities and Lecturer’s productivity as reflected in students’ academic results.
- H03: There are no significant differences in the effective utilization of ICT and student’s academic performance in Secretarial Studies in secondary schools in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State
Significant of the Study
This study Shed light on the importance of information communication technology on the teaching of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State. The following benefits are also considered:
(i) Effectiveness of information technology communication will develop ability to reason formerly to solve problem, to communicate effectively.
(ii) It will also help the teachers to realize the importance of ICT in teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies subjects.
(iii) It contributes to the fields of knowledge researchers in the area of Secretarial Studies subjects and information communication technology will find it useful in their research.
(iv) It will help the Governments, Ministry of Education in Nigeria, Students and readers to understand those benefits that Information Communication Technology embodies which we have neglected with in the past.
(v) It will go a long way to create an avenue for more academic research.
Haven known this, it is worthy to conclude that the main benef
iciaries of this study lies on the government and other readers respectively.
Scope of the Study
The scope of this research work focused strictly on the added advantages of information communication technology (ICT) in teaching and learning of Secretarial Studies in College of Education Ikere-Ekiti in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State. This work will lead us to the evolution of ICT in Nigeria and also examine how the academic field of Secretarial Studies Education is matching its challenges in this Era of Information Communication Technology.
Definition of Terms
- Information Communication Technology (ICT): is generally refers to ‘computers and computing related activities’. Computers and their application play a significant role in modern information management, other technologies and/or systems also comprise of the phenomenon that is commonly regarded as ICTs.
- INFORMATION: facts or details that tell you something about situation person events.
- COMMUNICATION: It is the transmission of information or idea from one source to another using various channels.
- EDUCATION: Is what prepares an individual to accommodate and to contribute positively to the development of his/her society.
- COMPUTER: It is an electronic device that accepts data as to give information as an output.
- I.C.T: Information Communication Technology.