EXAMINATION OF STUDENTS PERCEPTION ON HOME ECONOMICS AS A SKILL ACQUISITION SUBJECT
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The acquisition of skills is an important component in everyday life. Anyone who wants to learn a skill can do so through imitation, trial and error, or with the help of an instructor or instruction manual. Whatever method is used to learn a skill, the process takes time and requires effort from the person who wishes to learn. In one of the first studies on the concept of skill acquisition, Anderson (1982) proposed that “it takes at least 100 hours of study and practice to acquire any substantial cognitive talent to a tolerable degree of competency.” The precise time required to learn a skill is difficult to determine and is dependent on a number of factors such as task characteristics, personal engagement, and capacity.
Skill acquisition is a type of long-term learning in which a person learns how to behave in specific situations by repeatedly combining comparable inputs with specific responses (Speelman & Kirsner, 2005).
The acquisition of skills is now a priority in Nigeria’s educational system. There is no other academic field that includes as many relevant life skills in its curriculum that will help students thrive regardless of their chosen career paths. The significance of skill acquisition is that students will not only learn about topics relevant to their current lives, but will also be useful in their future endeavors. According to a Japanese study, students’ own initiative is critical in determining how they would react to changing job settings.
The program in home economics
exposes students to a variety of job opportunities. Those who become immersed in the course subject begin to consider a career in that field. Individuals with a home economics education background have gone on to work in nutrition, social service, and hotel management, among other fields. Students are embedded in contexts such as their family, school, and community, all of which contribute to their learning, development, and survival. Because it covers topics such as food preparation, home and environment décor, textile design, and so on, many people mistake home economics for a preparatory class that teaches them how to be good housewives. However, student perspectives on the subject differ from one another.
Many elements, including Perception can be influenced by attitudes, intentions, interests, experience, expectations, time, social situation, and background. Parents, the student’s gender, the instructor, peer group, social image, and family financial situation can all have an impact on students’ perceptions of the importance of home economics. The students’ inability to envision their futures is exacerbated by their parents’ poor choices in selecting separate vocations for them. Parents would rather their children study medicine, engineering, accounting, law, pharmacy, or other related fields than Home Economics. As a result, most male students dislike home economics because they believe it is primarily a female-oriented course that consists solely of cooking and sewing. The majority of male students major in technical fields such as mathematics, technical drawing, and basic engineering.
From technology to household management. This makes it difficult for teachers to teach their students effectively. Some teachers also have low regard for the subject, which leads to a lack of self-esteem and enthusiasm for self-improvement, as well as inadequate teaching skills. However, I am confident that home economics, as a topic for skill acquisition, plays an important role in today’s educational system. There is no other academic field that includes as many relevant life skills in its curriculum that will help students thrive regardless of their chosen career paths.
1.2 THE PROBLEM’S STATEMENT
Enrollment in skill acquisition disciplines such as Home Economics, Food and Nutrition in the West African Examination Council (clothing and textiles, Home Management, and Clothing and Textiles) has decreased in recent years.
to a bare minimum. According to Uko-Aviomoh (2002) and Anene-Okeakwa (2005), students have lost interest in home economics as a subject in secondary schools, and are becoming fewer in colleges of education, where teachers are trained as new teachers to train students in secondary schools in the area of Home Economics, posing a threat to the subject’s future. As a result, the issue statement in question form is “could the home economics classroom learning environment be so discouraging that students are no longer motivated to participate in home economics lessons?” The focus of this study, however, is on students’ perceptions of Home Economics as a skill acquisition course.
1.3 THE STUDY’S OBJECTIVES
The primary goal of this research was to examine students’
Home Economics is perceived as a skill acquisition subject. However, the study’s specific objectives are as follows:
i. To ascertain the justifications for teaching and learning home economics as a skill acquisition subject in secondary schools.
ii. Determine students’ attitudes toward home economics as a skill acquisition subject.
iii. To look into the factors that influence students’ perceptions of home economics as a skill acquisition subject.
iv. To establish the state government’s efforts in ensuring effective home economics teaching and learning as a skill acquisition subject in all secondary schools.
1.4 QUESTIONS FOR RESEARCH
The following are some of the questions that this research will attempt to answer:
i. What are the reasons for teaching and learning home economics as a subject?
Is there a skill acquisition subject in secondary school?
ii. What is students’ perception of home economics as a skill acquisition subject?
iii. What factors influence students’ perceptions of home economics as a subject for skill acquisition?
iv. What efforts is the state government making to ensure effective home economics teaching and learning as a skill acquisition subject in all secondary schools?
1.5 THE STUDY’S IMPORTANCE
The study’s findings will be useful to students, teachers, school administrators, and the state government because they will expose them to various issues affecting our educational system and how they can address them. It will also assist teachers in comprehending what is available in the teaching and learning home.
economics. If necessary, this study will draw the attention of home economics teachers to the need for them to adopt more appropriate teaching methods in order to provide students with desirable experiences. Finally, this study will contribute to academic knowledge and serve as a foundation for future research, as well as a reference material for other students and scholars who wish to conduct similar research on the above topic.
1.6 STUDY OBJECTIVES
This study’s scope is limited to an examination of students’ perceptions of Home Economics as a skill acquisition subject. The study, however, is limited to selected secondary schools in Abia State’s Ohafia Local Government Area. As a result, the respondents covered public secondary schools.
Students from four different secondary schools in Ohafia.
1.7 THE STUDY’S LIMITATIONS
The researchers encountered minor constraints while conducting the study, as with any human endeavor. The significant constraint was the scarcity of literature on the subject because it is a new discourse, so the researcher incurred more financial expenses and spent more time sourcing for relevant materials, literature, or information and in the data collection process, which is why the researcher resorted to a limited sample size covering only selected secondary schools in Ohafia Local Government Area in Abia State. As a result, the findings of this study cannot be generalized to other secondary schools in other Nigerian states. Furthermore, the researcher will be involved in
Combining this study with other academic work will prevent you from giving your full attention to the research. Finally, respondents were unable to return all of the questionnaires distributed to the researcher, forcing the researcher to work only with those that arrived. Nonetheless, despite the constraints encountered during the research, all factors were minimized in order to provide the best results and make the research a success.
1.8 TERMS’ DEFINITIONS
During the course of this research, the following terms were used:
Home economics is the study of the economics and management of the home and community.
It is concerned with the interaction of individuals, families, communities, and the environment in which they live.
Perception is the ability to see, hear, or become aware of something by using one’s senses.
Secondary school is the next level of education after primary school. In the United States, secondary schools are frequently referred to as high schools. Secondary schools in the United Kingdom can be public, grammar, or comprehensive.