INFORMATION NEEDS AND INFORMATION PROVISION TO SECONDARY SCHOOL GUIDANCE COUNSELORS IN ENUGU STATE

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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title Page             –           –           –           –           –           i
Approval Page                –           –           –           –           –           –           ii
Certification Page –     –           –           –           –           –           –           iii
Dedication –             –           –           –           –           –           –           iv
Acknowledgment-      –               –           –           –           –           v
Table of contents-    –           –           vi
List of tables   –           –   –           –           –           –           –           viii
Abstract          –           –              –           –           –           –           –           ix
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION                –           –           1
Background of the Study –      –       –           –           –           –           1
Statement of the Problem        –           –           –           –           7
 Purpose of the Study – –     –           –           –           –           –           8
Research Questions –   –  –           –           –           –           –           9
Significance of the Study –            –           –           –           –           9
Scope of the Study –    –                      –           –           –           11
CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW –    –           –           –           12
Conceptual Framework –     –                 –           –           –           12
Sources of Information for Guidance Counsellors –    –    –           26
Problems Facing Guidance Counsellors in Meeting thier Informaiton Needs           28
 Strategies for Enhancing Guidance Counsellors Access to Informaiton        –           30

 Review of Related Empirical Studies –   –           –           –           –           –           34

 Summary of Literature Review –         –           –           –           –           42
CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH METHODS –     –        –          44
Design of the Study    –    –           –           –           –           –           44
Area of the Study –     –           –        –           –           –           –           44
Population of the Study –       –          –           –           –           –           44
Sample and Sampling Techniques      –  –           –           –           –           45
 Instrument for Data Collection            –           –           –           45
Validation of the Instrument –                –           –           –           –           46
Method of Data Collection     –           –          –           –           –           46
 Method of Data Analysis      –         –           –           –           –           –           47
CHATER FOUR : PRESENTATION OF DATA        –           –           49
CHAPTER FIVE: DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION   –           –           60
Discussion of findings    –                –           –           –           –           60
Implication of findings     –           –           –           –           –           63
Recommendations          –           –        –           –           –           –           64
Suggestions for further Research –         –        –           –           –           –           66
 Limitations          –           –            –           –           –           –           66
Conclusion          –           –           –           –           –           –           67
REFERENCES        –           –                 –           –           –           –           68
APPENDICES          –      –           –           –           –           –           –           74
LIST OF TABLES                                                                                  PAGE
Table 1.      Education zones, Schools, and professional Guidance Counselors         –           45
Table 2.       Areas where Guidance counselors need information      –           –           –          50
Table 3.     Extent Guidance Counselors seek information from various sources       –           52
Table 4.     Extent to which information sources meet their information need           –           54
Table 5.     Problems facing guidance counselors in meeting their information need 55
Table 6. Strategies for improved provision to better meet their information need   –             57                                      
ABSTRACT

The study was designed to explore the information needs and information provision to guidance counselors in Enugu state secondary schools. The discriptive survey design was used while five research questions were formulated to guide the study. The population of the study consists of all proffessional guidance counselors in secondary schools in Enugu state. The instrument used was questionaire. Data was analysed using mean, frequency count, and percentage. The result revealed that  guidance  counsellors in secondary schools in Enugu state have many information needs. The information needs are in the areas of educational information, career and vocational information, and also personal-social information.  The result also reveals that the extent to which information needs are met are still vey low and their sources of information are professional colleagues, radio, neighbours, school library, radio, neighbours, adolescents, international bodies, such as UNESCO report, and world bank report, others are academic library, internet, newspapers, magazines, non-governmental organizations, television, public library, conference, seminars, workshops, family and friends, textbooks, journals, form teachers, subject teachers. However, despite the importance of information to guidance counselors in the administration of guidance and counselling services. A number of problems affect the guidance counselors in meeting these needs, including unavailability of information sources, some information sources outdated, unorganised information sources, lack of necessary skills to acquire necessary information, lack of internet facilities, inability to know when new materials are acquired. The recommendation based on the findings were that workshops, seminars, in-service training be organised more regularly to update the knowldge of guidance and counsellors while internet facilities should be provided  to enhance access to adequate and current information.

CHAPTER  ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the Study 

Guidance and counseling is an assistance rendered to an individual to help him to understand himself and his problem better and develop insight into possible ways of solving the identified problems. Golberg (1980) defined counseling as a systematic exploration of self or environment by a client with the aid of a counselor to clarify understanding of environmental alternatives so that behavior modification or decision are made on the basis of greater cognitive and effective understanding. Olayinka (1988) sees counseling as a dynamic and purposeful relationship between two people in which procedure vary with the nature of the students needs but in which there is always natural participation by the counselor and the student with the focus upon self clarification and self determination by the student. In this day of technological advancement, children of all ages need help beyond what teachers presently provide. This recognition propelled the Nigerian government to make a policy decision, sending guidance counselors to schools as well as assisting interested individuals to train as counselors. Thus counselors have been assigned to work with children. Efforts are being made at both state and national level to ensure that the Nigerian child is advanced technologically, industrially, technically, scientifically through education. The system of education of the child (junior secondary school and senior secondary school) is very complex and intricate in the sense that his/her psychological and developmental growth is inseparable from his academic growth. As a result of these complexities, the introduction of effective counseling services to the secondary schools is very important

The National Policy on Education (2004) made it clear that guidance and counselling in our schools are essential, paragraph 83 (1) of the policy document declared this in these words. ‘‘In view of the apparent ignorance of many young people about career prospects, and in view of personality maladjustment among school children, career officers and counselors will be appointed in post primary institutions. Since qualified personnel in this category are scarce, government will continue to make provisions for the training of interested teachers in guidance and counseling.”

The Ministry of Education (1990) envisaged that through the services rendered by Guidance and Counseling unit by the end of nine years basic education and senior secondary education, the student should have gained insight in the area of educational guidance, social guidance and vocational career guidance. Specifically, students through personal guidance are expected to gain knowledge about themselves, their values, needs, abilities and aptitudes. They are also expected to acquire good social relationship and communication skills through social guidance. Educational guidance will provide students/pupils with educational awareness, acquisition of work skills and increased career awareness, decision making skills, employability awareness and career information service.

          Guidance and Counseling programs provide pupils vital information in the areas of educational, occupational and socio-personal endeavors as well as in career planning and placement service. Decision-making, whether for educational, occupational, or socio-personal needs is the most difficult aspect of behavior to develop, and making choices at this stage involves many mistakes, and a high degree of threat, conflict, frustration, and anxiety. In effect, the programme ensures the timely identification and diagnosis of school-related problems such as underachievement, reading deficiencies, slow learning, poor academic performance, poor study habits, academic failures and pupil personal conflict. It also provides information on training and employment opportunities for distribution to schools .Other responsibilities include staff consultation, parental assistance, student self appraisal, planning referral to allied community agencies and public relations. Guidance assists students in developing decision-making competence and in formulating future plans..

 In spite of the above, children still experience diverse problems that hinder teaching and learning. The change theory holds that many physical, biological, anatomical and psychological changes occur during the period of adolescence, and that the basis of all the instability, destruction and estrangement is caused by the manifested changes (Uba, Makinde, Adjuno, 1993). Adolescence is a period of transition between childhood and adulthood. It is a period of storm and stress, of confusion and conflict both for the adolescent, his parent, his peers and the society in general. As a result of many physical changes taking place in the adolescent, he is bound to have conflicting ideas, values, and beliefs about himself. Akimboye (1984) noted that the physiological and psychological changes are often either intimately or remotely related to many of the situations which create behavior problems in adolescents such as peer group influences, delinquent behavior, sexual behavior, and moral and ethical concerns. Madu (2002) listed other dimensions of adolescent problems as follows: depression, lethargy, hopelessness, suicidal pre-occupation or attempts, apparent conduct disorder, complaint of restlessness, concentration difficulty, insomnia, fighting, running away, school failure, withdrawal and poor social relationship.

Other behavioral problems of adolescents include, alcohol and drug abuse, pregnancy, delinquency, risk taking, suicide.  As a student progresses through different school levels, assistance in processing information, problem solving and decision was making increases in proportion to the development demands. According to Akinboye (1982), such disturbed children have wrong ideas about themselves and may use socially unacceptable means to find their place in the society. Children in this kind of predicament hardly benefit from teaching and learning.

           However, such children can be helped to learn to resolve their problems and become better adjusted individuals. This is part of the counselor’s duty in the school. Secondary school counselors believe that each child possesses intrinsic worth and inherent and inalienable rights and that each child is the focus of the educational process. Counselors believe that most students, given the experience of an accepting non valuating relationship, will make intelligent decisions. When effective, school counseling functions as a continuous process to assist students by identifying and meeting their needs in educational, vocational and personal-social domains. Guidance is the function of every member of the educational team, but the school counselor has the primary responsibility for leadership. Guidance assists students to understand themselves by focusing attention on their interests, abilities, and needs in relation to their home, school and environment. The intended outcome of the Guidance and Counseling programme is to increase adaptive behavior by developing in individuals such basic skills and abilities as are necessary for overcoming day-to-day problems in the school. The school counselor is the person or a staff who has special training in accessing the specific needs of each student and planning an appropriate guidance programme in educational, vocational, and personal-social domain. Through training, the effective school counselor, remains informed and approach each counseling situation realistically. Guidance and counseling provides parents additional understanding of child and adolescent development in order to strengthen the role of parents in the promotion of growth in children.

Information service is a vital component of guidance and counseling. It provides guidance counselors with basic knowledge in the areas of education, occupation and personal- social issues and decision making. They also assist students who are about to graduate and are ready to enter higher institutions of learning to be aware of training opportunities and various requirements at various levels of education or entry into institutions. Also they provide students with information that could lead them to understand them self and various aspects of one’s development as well as the understanding of others.

Information is universally accepted as an important resource in any organization. A well organized system of information is a prerequisite for effective decision making.   Information has been variously defined in the literature. Osuala (2001) sees information as facts and opinions provided and received during the course of daily life, while Ajibero (1993) sees information as data of value in planning, decision making, and evaluation of any programme. Martins (1988) define information as that which adds to awareness or understanding of some topics of intelligence, data, news or knowledge. Information makes people to be conscious of topics or phenomena necessary to fit best in the society. This implies that information is not something that springs up from within but is received from the outside in order to stimulate an action.

           Bouazza in Obidike (2007) defined information need as what an individual ought to have for his work, his research, his edification. Crawford (1974) suggested that the measure of information needs can be complicated as it involves a cognitive process which may operate at different levels of consciousness and hence may not be clear even to the inquirer himself.

The information needs of individuals have to be studied in the context of the information environment, which includes not only the information need but also the provision of information, access to information and sources of information used for meeting the information need. Because of the importance of providing information sources to users, the information needs of specific users need to be studied. The guidance counselor whose duty it is to help an individual to understand himself ,his world, his capabilities and abilities, so that he can best utilize his potential to the fullest,  needs information and applies different methods or strategies in meeting her information needs. Osokoye (1987) pointed out that guidance and counseling is important for proper personal, academic and social adjustment of students in schools. The main objective is to give psychological guidance that will help an individual to achieve his self-direction, self understanding and mental balance necessary to make the maximum adjustment to school. A judicious application of guidance will foster wise educational decisions which might lead to a better future career, especially now that students are confronted with a variety of subjects to choose from. In turn, an efficient guidance counselor in today’s complex world is dependent on information and analysis that permits him to make informed decisions. 

 The need for formal library instruction for guidance counselors is very important.  Awareness of electronic search tools and information management skills should be emphasized. This is an information age when we are being bombarded with ever-increasing quantities of information made more accessible by information technology. There is a realization that if we do not learn to use it effectively, we will be overwhelmed by it.

The type of information an individual wants or needs at a given point in time depends on the problem he or she wants to address at that time. As a result, the purpose for which the information is needed leads to the source from which such information could be obtained (Utor, 2004). Information could be provided to users through personal observation, interaction with one another, from libraries, in books, journals, conference papers, dissertation, non-book materials, internet etc .Be that as it may, it stands to reason that guidance counselors in secondary schools who want to be effective in their arduous task of helping individuals to make appropriate decisions should have easy access to accurate, unrestricted and most current information. A tool for carrying these functions out is the library. Guidance Counselors in secondary schools need a type of school library that provides interesting books, magazines and periodicals on occupational information and career opportunities, pamphlets on effective reading, sex education and inter-personal relationship, current JAMB brochures to help for further educational information to higher institutions of learning, A-V resources such as radio, tapes and CDs, visual resources such as pictures, charts and slides, video, TV, posters on guidance and counseling. These provide educational, vocational as well as personal and social information. The school library should provide for both the teachers and students

           Guidance and counseling is needed for effective operation of the National policy on Education, the need to curb secret cult activities, prevention of mass failure in public examination, Student indiscipline and vandalism, awareness of available career opportunities. There is need also to pay attention to each individual within the school to ensure that hidden and latent talents are identified and developed to the optimum.

INFORMATION NEEDS AND INFORMATION PROVISION TO SECONDARY SCHOOL GUIDANCE COUNSELORS IN ENUGU STATE