Problems of teaching and learning business education

Business education is an aspect of vocational education, which equips individuals with the necessary skills, and theoretical knowledge needed for performance in the business world either for job occupations or for self employment. Business education is education for business and about business. Vocational/business education is offered at both the formal and the non-formal setting. Formal education here refers to educational programmes offered at the secondary schools and higher institutions aimed at providing vocational skills to children and youths. On the other hand, non-formal vocational education refers to educational programmes offered outside the formal school system aimed at providing, developing and improving vocational skills and general knowledge for children and youths who dropped out of the formal school system for one reason or the other. The formal school system, as provided for by the Federal Government in its National Policy on Education (1981), (1998) and (2002) offers business studies which comprises of shorthand, typewriting, commerce, office practice and book keeping.

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Oyelaran-Oyeyinka (2007) has identified four major challenges facing business education today, viz: lack of state mandates for our curriculum, funding and budgeting issues, support from local administration and Board of education and educating our community. Business education provides the knowledge, kills, attitudes and understanding needed to perform in the business world as a producer and or consumer of goods and services that business offers. It includes virtually all the knowledge which holds prospect for gainful employment. The realization of lofty aims of business education depends on how much the following challenges are tackled. In the same view with Ogwuogo (2013), the challenges are:

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Unqualified Teachers:

The employment of unqualified teachers to teach business courses is a great obstacle to quality of business education graduates. Most of the institutions that offer business education programme suffer from shortage of qualified teachers (Amoor in Ugwuogo, 2012).

Obsolete Technologies:

Manual typewriters are still largely in use in the computer age. This serves as a challenge to the graduate who intends to put in practices the business ideas. Some available modern ICTs are grossly inadequate in terms of efficiency and productivity.

The size of Business Classes:

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Due to the increasing and demand for education especially social and vocational courses amidst the insufficiency of the facilities and human labour, there is always high teacher-student ratio which turns to affect the quality of delivery of some practical courses like word processing, data processing, shorthand, among others.

Poor Funding:

Many administrators fail to understand that business education programme is capital intensive. It is a well-known fact that one of the major problems bedeviling education in Nigeria today is inadequate funding and business education is no exception.

Possible solution

Considering the impeding challenges facing business education, the following recommendations are made:

i.          All levels of education should do away with the obsolete technologies imbedded in their curriculum and thus adjust it to the current technological age and cultivate a certain scientific and technological standard and ensuring the adequate provision of such facilities.

ii.         Government should properly and adequately fund business education. This can be achieved through increase in the budgetary allocation to the level of education by the government.

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iii.        Business and/or entrepreneurship education should be made compulsory at all levels of education.

iv.        Multinational agencies/companies should support learning of business education as it serves a basis for economic revival and a main stream activity to enable transformations to take place very fast in the nation.

v.         On the job training programmes such as workshops, seminars should be made free and compulsory to lecturers in the field to acquaint themselves with these skills so that they can in turn impact in students effectively.

vi.        Credit facilities should be made available to the willing entrepreneurs with the necessary skills who are eager to explore them in achieving national development.

Problems of teaching and learning business education, Problems of teaching and learning business education, Problems of teaching and learning business education

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