Nigerian government has been urged to to initiate curricular reforms that would redirect Nigeria’s educational focus to the changing world of works and life.
A professor of measurement and evaluation at the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Uchenna Sydney Ajunwa Osuji who made the appeal during the NOUN 20th inaugural lecture, also urged educational institutions in the country to establish a clear policy on assessment practices.
Professor Osuji spoke on the “Assessment For The Learning To Learn And Life-Long Societies”.
According to him, there is need for a new learning system which is characterized by new forms of assessment, investments, and fit for purpose infrastructure.
“This is necessitated by the globalization and new patterns of working and living which are increasing the demands for specialist skills, competences and knowledge.”
He further said assessment should be able to induce the use of modern technologies for the collection of data to draw relevant conclusions and judgments that are helpful to individual learners, educational institutions, and the educational systems as a whole.
“In the areas of learning to learn and life-long learning assessment makes a very important contribution. This includes the development of the learners ability for self-assessment of themselves,” Professor Osuji said.
“All learners who develop the ability to self-assess themselves become competent learners. This is a prerequisite for self regulation.”
“This leads to intelligent self- regulation which requires the learner to become a competent learner in order to be able to measure and evaluate his own performance and make progress towards his goals and objectives in life. Definitely, this improves his capacity to become a life- long assessor of his own learning.”
“This is very important for any society that wants to have a sustainable assessment practice. I am therefore saying that assessment activities must not only address the needs of immediate certificate but must go beyond that by equipping the people to make decisions and judgments about themselves their performances, their learning and their existence in a world that is full of super complexities.”
“This is because in today’s world, the only thing required is knowledge to fit into jobs that are frequently.”
He, therefore, recommended that
examinations should not be used as negative and destructive assessment tool to attack and devalue the personality worth of the examinees which could invariably ruin their prospective careers.
He also stressed that assessment must not be used to perpetrate social injustice in education, while stressing that educational assessment should focus on assessment for learning rather than assessment of learning.
“It must look forward as well as backwards. We need an assessment which is not only focusing to confirm and verify what the learners have learnt, but one that helps the learners to understand the next steps ahead in learning and in life. In other words, we need assessment which tries to shape what lies ahead rather than to gauge and record past achievements.”
“Every educational institution should have a clear policy on assessment practices as well as the type of assessment that should be promoted or prioritized.”
“Our education is not tied to what is happening around us. We need education, and by implication, educational assessment that will draw attention for the people to have control of their environment, by focusing on educational activities that will direct the people towards reducing and totally removing perceived obstacles and challenges to our living standards.
“Government should initiate curricular reforms that will redirect our educational focus to the changing world of works and life,” he added.
Also speaking, the vice chancellor of NOUN, Prof. Olufemi Petersc commended the inaugural lecturer for exposing the congregation to the basic necessities in assessment for the learners.
“This 20th inaugural lecture is one of the very noble activities that all universities do partake in and it is usually one of these ceremonies where one of us will decide to explain the community and the world at large all what he has taken himself through his academic carrier and I’m specially pleased that today’s inaugural lecturer has been one of the founding faculty staff of the NOUN,” the vice chancellor said.