Academic journal article Ife Psychologia

The Challenges Faced by University of Education, Winneba Distance Education Student-Mothers during Examinations

Academic journal article Ife Psychologia

The Challenges Faced by University of Education, Winneba Distance Education Student-Mothers during Examinations

Article excerpt

Abstract

Education is expected to free the mind so that one can free oneself from the strictures and inhibitions that arise from laziness, jealousy, prejudice, and arrogance. In distance education, the teaching-learning process assumes the form of self study though guided by the teacher. Besides the teaching -learning process allows a degree of openness with regard to access, goals, and method. Obviously, the freedoms of access, space and time have tremendously contributed to many women enrolling on the distance education programme of University of Education, Winneba. Equally important is that the distance education programme is enlightening the female students and providing them with adequate professional training and preparing them to be connected to and integrated into the real world and for them to recognize the need for change and be change agents in their fields. However, some of the female students who are nursing mothers find it difficult to concentrate during examinations as a result of disturbances from their babies. The situation is so desperate that it is not uncommon to see a mother carrying her baby on the shoulders of one hand to soothe the baby from crying whilst using the other hand in answering the examination questions. Since such conditions do not create the necessary peace of mind for such mothers to pass well there is the need for the university to put mechanisms in place to help them to also have the necessary peace of mind needed to pass examinations.

Key Words:

Nursing Mothers, Distance, Problem, Enlighten, Freedom

Introduction

Considering the fact that education is the bedrock of development, many countries spend large sums of money out of their Gross Domestic Products (GDP) on it. Ho (2005) asserted that education is expected to free the mind so that one can free oneself from the strictures and inhibitions that arise from laziness, jealousy, prejudice, and arrogance. Ho (2005) further stated that the difference between university education and other levels of education is that university education does not provide happiness to the learner only but also to everyone in the community or humanity as a whole. This proposition suggests that education brings a lot of benefits to the learner and society. If that is true then education needs to be democratized so that everyone can have equal access to it.

Though there is the need to make education available to everyone who needs it, such a democratized education should not be a diluted one, but rather should meet the needs of society. Higher education exists to promote the continual advancement of knowledge, invest in methodologies that stimulate students to think beyond current behavioural and conceptual boundaries rather than maintaining the status quo. It also helps the student to develop the emotional muscle and interpersonal dynamics needed to push the boundaries of development (Brown, 2004) and to foster democracy and social justice that the larger community does not address.

The university is a place where the learner becomes familiar with foundational and structural knowledge - data, concepts, relationships, propositions, perspectives, theories and ways of the field upon which later learning builds. There the learner learns to sift through information relevant to his/her field and other fields and uses information and knowledge to solve problems (LaPointe, 2006). According to Gallagher (2003), in recent times, there is a shift towards accountability in higher education. The shift is from theoretical-based to outcome-based or employer- based competency. In many cases certification is becoming more preferable to a degree (Gallagher, 2003). Diplomas are less meaningful to employers. Rather, knowledge, performance and skills are what count to employers (Callaham, 2003). Johansson (2004) postulated that preparing the learner to be connected to and integrated with the world refers to the recognition that intersections and relationships of many fields and people are necessary for solving complex problems and advancing the fields. …

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