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1.1.      Background to the study

The choosing of social studies as a subject in both junior and senior secondary school curriculum has been seen as a choice to be made by the prospective student just to complete the required number of subjects one is expected to choose to meet the minimum standard requirement by the school board. This is because most persons do not choose social studies subject as a course because they desire to make a profession out of it, but just to complete the required number of subjects permitted. In most cases, it is very difficult to see students registering social studies as a course in the final senior secondary school certificate examinations. This trend does not seem to be very healthy for social studies as a course especially as it has been seen as a subject that inculcate the right type of value and social norms in the learners who become committed to the subject.

            The need for the examination of factors militating against the teaching and learning of social studies as a subject is justified by the demand for social education principles whose product makes a more responsible citizenship in the communities. Inyang-Abia (1995) in examining the problems of teaching and learning social studies posited that the subject social studies is very important since it helps to prepare young people of our time to be committed to social responsibilities that expands in number and some cases, those positions are suffering from inadequacies and incompetent of reliable citizens to fill such vacancies. The national policy on education (1981) states the objectives of social studies in respect to social life as follows:

1.      Enable students to imbibe the basic existence of factual information about society with emphasis on where and how it may be discovered, classified, arranged and presentation rather than haphazard memorization.

2.      To develop respect for the ideals, heritage and institution of the nation and a feeling of brotherhood towards fellow human being everywhere.

3.      To acquire and develop a capacity to learn certain skills such as listening, speaking, ability to observe, analyze and influence economic and political judgment.

4.      To learn about the problems and challenge that confront people today in the realm of social living and human relation at different levels, local, state, national and international.

Little or no effort was made in propagating or integrating social studies subject until recently that Social Studies began gaining ground in the various level of education system, this has made it possible as a result of increase in the training of social studies teachers  and other were also trained in other related field. The teaching of social studies in our school system has been taught by both trained and quack teachers, making the teaching of the subject is done in a disjointed and uncoordinated manner which makes little sense and meaning to the student. Example History, geography, economic are taught separately by professionals especially in our secondary schools, but social studies has never been taught like that. The new social studies program is integrated in the sense that it is interdisciplinary in form as it draws its content from other social sciences.

            Makinde (1979) observed that social studies tries to direct the attention of student to their immediate environment before showing them more of the other world. It begins with the family as the first unit of the community, then school, community, state, nation and the international community. The advantage of this system is that, it promotes greater integration of learning experience by unifying subject matter as it employs systematic correlation of subject around them drawn from the function of living things and their interactions with their environment.   Social studies is also organized around the problems and needs of adolescent especially those that demand persona-social understanding as reflected in the social studies syllabus in secondary schools. The content and subject matter revolves around them like members of the family, responsibilities, obligation, citizenship etc. social studies by its mandate is a course that should introduce the students to make a more responsible and responsive citizenry capable of properly socializing and being a functional member of his immediate environment and the worlds around us. This is the onus of social studies as designed by the designers of the syllabus and curriculum content. If this then is what the subject social studies is designed to achieve, to what extent has this been achieved and how responsive are students in our public and private secondary schools willing to learn and subscribe to the making of social studies a life-long career?

This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research

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