Posted on April 10, 2018
Technology education and the use of technology in all spheres of learning have been described as the crucial to making Nigeria relevant in the comity of nations.
The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Sidmach Technology Nigeria Limited, Adedayo Arogundade, and the Chairman, Governing Council, Lagos City Polytechnic, Babatunde Odufuwa, made the submission in their presentations at the 12th convocation of the Lagos City Polytechnic on Wednesday in Lagos.
In his paper titled Integrating Technology in Learning, Arogundade, who presented the keynote address, said, “Nigeria needs further entrenchment of technology in educational development. Science and Technology have revolutionised learning around the world. Telecommunication has brought the world together such that distance is no longer a barrier to quality and depth of learning.
Many values that have been added to telecommunication over the years and the explosion in software engineering has superimposed interesting paradigm to learning in general.”
He described the application of technology to education in Nigeria as low and said the factors slowing down it were the lack of practical appreciation of science teaching in Nigeria; low rate of paradigm shift; less aggression in the pursuit of science by government; and infrastructural deficiency.
On the lack of practical appreciation of science teaching in Nigeria, he said, “Maybe our background as a nation, not originally featured as a champion of empirical knowledge based on science, has affected our collective disposition towards science and technology. We are a nation of administrators, diplomats and artists. This has tailored our academic curricula more to a liberal education than vocational.
“Arts and social knowledge is more strongly projected than science and technology. Sponsorship of songs, dance, acting competitions abounds to the pitiable non-emphasis of science. Most of the young primary pupils and secondary students grow appetite for instant gratification. They go into entertainment to afford the gratification instead of science and technology that can guarantee broad-based, long-term sustainability of the nation’s economy and improved future.”
On the low rate of paradigm shift, he said the boom in the products of technology (handsets, gadgets and others) imported into the country had not translated to domiciled knowledge and awareness that could lead to self-reliance.
“What we are experiencing now in the application of technology to learning is meagre in our clime compared to the expected preponderance of it as seen in the way technology has caused explosion in learning on the other continents. Despite the awareness, integrating this into our curricular is not as expected,” he said.
And on the lack of aggression by the government, he noted that the inadequate application of technology to learning could be traced to insufficient policy drive. He stressed that the expansion of the science base of the nation should not be a one-off agenda, saying, “It should be reviewed yearly to encourage policies that will continue to reinforce what is already on ground. In Nigeria, we have the Ministry of Science and Technology but the aggression to monitor science endeavour to provide scientific material, catalyse competition among pupils and students, give international exposure, etc., are lacking.”
Similarly, Babatunde Odufuwa, stressed the need to embrace technology in teaching and learning towards making Nigeria an economy to reckon with.
He said, “The capacity for countries to adopt, disseminate, and maximise rapid technological advances is dependent on adequate systems of tertiary education.
“There are many ways of enhancing and improving the quality, value and standard of tertiary education in Nigeria. In this context, there are parameters through which various studies and professions conform to the needs of the society and business, most of which emanate from research and technological development in the world.
“Discoveries and studies are put together in order to achieve a set of world knowledge acquisition which cuts across languages and national boundaries but are universally accepted by all users in the engineering, medicine, information technology and other forms of improvement in the educational standard of the world.”
He urged the 541 young Nigerians that graduated from the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the school of Business and Management Studies to always uphold professional ethics, saying, “You are nothing if you are not the Truth. In Nigeria we have misplaced our priorities and have completely lost our values as a nation. It is now all about money notwithstanding the circumstances of how we get it. But life is not all about the financial benefits, it is okay to be rich, have good houses, cars etc. All of these don’t fill up your life. It doesn’t. It does not.
“I have no doubt that some of the graduates at this convocation possess these attributes. I encourage them to follow the path of being self-employed as soon as practicable. They constitute an invaluable asset to any economy. The way forward for the economy is to do everything possible to encourage entrepreneurs and professionals. This is the way to go if we must diversify our economy, create more jobs, reduce unemployment, minimise criminality and, above all, advance the welfare of our people.”
Out of the 541 graduated, 267 were awarded National Diploma certificates while 274 received Higher National Diploma certificates