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PERSONAL-CHARACTERISTICS AND ATTITUDE OF SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOL TOWARDS GUIDANCE AND COUNSELLING
1.1 Background to the Study
Most human beings often have problems which make it necessary for them to look for ways of solving or at least dealing with such problems. In the past, and some cases even today, people have resorted to sooth sayers, wizards, oracles, medicine men and fortune tellers to solve their problems. Part of our problems of living today may be taken to the doctors for medical advice, lawyers for legal advice and pastors for prayers and so forth.Students in schools have their own problems, some of which the refer to their teachers in school. However, since not all teachers are specially trained in the act of helping them solve their problems like counsellors, most of the problems of the students go unresolved.
Guidance and counselling came into existence in Nigeria about the end of 1959, a group of Reverend Sisters from St. Theresa’s College Ibadan, realizing the great need for giving career guidance to their school leavers, invited some people from all walks of life to advice their final year students. None of these selected advisers was a career guidance counsellor, but they all definitely knew a lot more about the world of employment than any of the prospective graduates and Reverend Sisters. Later on, this group of advisers developed into the University of Ibadan Careers Counsel which eventually formed the nucleolus of the Nigerian Career Council (NCC). It is glaring today that every person has a dream of finding a profession that would suit his decision and also fetch him an appropriate income while enabling him to maintain his prestige or good social status. It is one’s profession that helps to inculcate one’s level of social standing.
Guidance and counselling has not been quite popular in our secondary schools due to the personal characteristics and attitudes of students towards it. Even most educationist seems to neglect the relevance of guidance and counselling in the secondary school’s system and as a profession. Personal characteristics and attitude of people toward guidance and counselling has equal influence in the mind of secondary school students. These personal characteristics include gender, and religion. It is in the view of the foregoing that attempt has been made in the study to find out the personal characteristics and attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling in Abak Local Government Area of AkwaIbom State.
In the view of Kemika (2001), what one becomes in the future where one lives, the social class one belongs and one’s mode of dressing etc. are determined to a large extent by the type of occupation or profession in which we find ourselves. This shows that the kind of profession one goes into would go a long way in influencing virtually all aspect of one’s life including one’s pattern of dressing. Kemika (2001) in Ibid (2005), further asserts that our forefathers were born into, made changes and lived a simple life in the family setup with their kins fold. Society as at then was not in a hurry or prone to constant change as seen today. The story is quite different, the youths today were born into societies that are rapidly undergoing technological “metamorphosis” family traditional occupation are no longer matching the need, interest and desires of youth in the modern industrial societies. Many new and numerous professions, position and jobs, abound as off shoot of industrialization. Hence, the youths today have various alternatives in terms of professions, but they often find problems in making the appropriate choices. This is where the relevance of guidance and counselling comes in. The question is whether the senior secondary school students would accept guidance and counselling and not going by numerous alternative available to them in the society.
According to Ukwoiye (2007), attitude is a learned predisposition to respond to certain things objectives, situations, concept of other persons. The responses can be negative or positive. He further asserted that attitude of nature cannot be seen or observed rather they are inferred from the personal characteristics of individuals, which can be verbal or nonverbal.
Many authors have given their views about guidance and counselling. Nwankow (2003), asserted guidance and counselling is an interaction process that facilitates meaningful understanding on oneself, environment and results in the establishment and clarification of goods and value for future behavior. Thus counselling can be seen as a service given by professionals (the counsellor) to the client to help them solve their immediate and prospective problems. However, it will be noted that guidance and counselling is aimed at alleviating human suffering so as to enhance human effectiveness, create an avenue for the counsellor to enable other (clients) to have a greater insight into their feelings, attitudes, interest, strengths and weakness as well as their various developmental problems thereby enhancing greater productivity of the individual in the world in which he lives.
Banjo (2004) state that “the behavioural psychologist and the vocational psychologist disagree over an acceptable definition of the item “profession” the vocational psychologist sees position held in life, the behaviour psychologist sees it as a life style or life itself.Ellah (2007) defines profession as the means through which people earn their living. This new view does not however include anti-social engagements. All these views about profession seem to agree that profession is discipline involving the acquisition of training and skills in which the individual fits into the society as a whole and makes his contribution to the development of human and at the same time is personally and socially useful to the individual.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The counsellor occupies a very strategic position in any educational system. The Federal Government is aware of this fact, this is why the reemphasis is on the need for guidance and counselling services in the new national policy on education (6-3-3-4) system.
It is also clear from the Federal Ministry of Education that counsellors should operate on fulltime basis. Also most principals and teachers are aware of the counsellor’s functions/services. Despite this fact, it has been observed that the program/services are not encouraged at the secondary school level. Apart from academic problems of failure and dropout of students, from schools, other numerous psyco-social; vocational and personal social problems abound among students in our secondary schools. Parents and significant others in recent times have been so concerned about academic problems of students. The control or resolution of these problems is always channeled to mainly school authorities and teachers while the seeking of counsellors‟ attention is always ignored. This study therefore attempts to look at personal characteristics and attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling in Abak Local Government Area of AkwaIbom State.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The purpose of the study is to investigate the personal characteristics and attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling in Abak Local Government Area.
Specifically, this study was to;
- Find out how age affects attitude of senior secondary students towards guidance and counselling.
- Find out how gender affects attitude of senior secondary students towards guidance and counselling.
- Find out how religion affects attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling.
1.4 Research Questions
- What is the relationship between age and attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling?
- What is the relationship between gender and attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling?
- What is the relationship between religion and attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling?
1.5 Research Hypotheses
- There is no significant relationship between age and attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling.
- There is no significant relationship between gender and attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling.
There is no significant relationship between religion and attitude of senior secondary school students towards guidance and counselling.