LABOUR UNIONISM AND INSTITUTIONAL EFFECTIVENESS

LABOUR UNIONISM AND INSTITUTIONAL EFFECTIVENESS IN OSUN STATE COLLEGE OF EDUCATION ILESA, OSUN STATE, NIGERIA

BY

  1. OLAYEMI J. ABIODUN-OYEBANJI

Olayemi.oyebanji@yahoo.com

07030075008

                                                                        AND

  1. AYOBAMI A. OYEDEJI

oyedejiayobami2011@gmail.com, oyedejiayobami94@yahoo.com

08032122389

1&2Department of Educational Management,

University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria

 

ABSTRACT

This study investigated contributions of Labour Unionism (LU) to Institutional Effectiveness (IE) in Osun State College of Education (OSCoED)Ilesa, Osun State, Nigeria. Literatures show that IE appears low especially when labourunions embark on indefinite strikes. The higher the number of trade union struggles in the form of work boycotts, strikesand sympathy strikes, the more the problems faced by institutions and it lowersIE. 

The paper adopted descriptive surveyusing a population that comprised127 academic staff in OSCoEDIlesa.The Purposive sampling technique was adopted to select 100 academic staff while 200 students were randomly sampled. Research instruments for the study were questionnaires titled “Labour Unionism Questionnaire (LUQ) and Institutional Effectiveness Questionnaire (IEQ). The instruments were subjected to Cronbach alpha statistical reliability test yielding ’r’= 0.85 and 0.76 respectively. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyze data.

The results indicated that IE was found to be highly effective(60.0%). The result also confirmed that LU was good and at maximal level(83.0%). Again it was indicatedthatisa significant contribution of fundingto the system(β = 0.718; t = 3.618; p<0.05)existed with the condition of service(β = 0.682; t = 3.439; p<0.05)to IE. However, fundingwas found to be highest contributor to IE in OSCoEDIlesa. Government and management of the Colleges of Education should give more attention to funding to the system and condition of service to improve institutional effectiveness.

Key Words: Labour Unionism, Institutional Effectiveness; Colleges of Education

 

 

 Introduction

Institutional effectiveness is the degree to which higher institutions of learning meet their stated missions and goals. The effectiveness of an institution does not only capturewhat is taught therein but what students also learn. It is not only about how much time and money is spent in carrying out research but how much new knowledge generates through quality research carried out in the higher institutions of learning.Further to this, what is taught and learnt is not only captured in the number of hours spent in community outreach, buthow impactful such community services are on those activities.Therefore, institutions (Colleges of Education) discover how effective they are by assessing teaching, research and community service.Anumaka (2013) identified student performance, administrative support services, research support level and community development as a way of measuring effective institutions. Institutional effectiveness is the systematic, explicit and documented process of measuring performance against mission in all aspects of institutional services (Samad, Singh and Dwivedula, 2018).

Performance is very significant to institutional effectiveness. The institution that will achieve its goals has to be effective in the area of teaching, research and community service (Yildiz,Hotamişliand Eleren,2011). In the light of foregoing , Academic staff in  Colleges of Educationcould be up and doing in the tasks thattheir institutions employed them for, if effective institutions are to be attained.However, institutional effectiveness could be assessed using teaching of academic staff inCollegesofEducation. Teaching is the primary assignmentof academic staff and one of the reasons whyColleges of Education throughout Nigeria were established. Teaching effectiveness in the classroom setting in Colleges of Education appearlow especially when academic staff of such institutions are engaged in other activities that could be considered as distractive for example,  selling  handouts in schools andheavy involvement in the teaching of greedy  sandwich programmes to survive. Abiodun-Oyebanji (2010) laid credence to this that,some of the academic staff in Colleges of Education seem not to be dedicated and committed to teaching and learning in their respective institutions. Abiodun-Oyebanji (2010) further observed that, experience has shown that some of these lecturers in Colleges of Education appear not to be committed to their teaching jobs as they ought toand as it was in previous times in Nigeria. Keston (2015) corroborated thisassertion by positing thatthe academic staffin Colleges of Education are no longer dedicated and committed to their jobs.Therefore, the current experience is an indication that there could be a problem with institutional effectiveness.

Products of Colleges of Education are output of teaching and they have to contribute their own quota to the socio-economic development that will largely depend on how well these products are taught and learned in Colleges of Education.Arubayi (2011) observed that the outputs of these institutions i.egraduates areexpectedtoapplytheirlearningandtrainingtothevarioussectors ofnationalneedsand bringingaboutgrowthanddevelopmentofthesociety at large. It seems that all the trained teachers in Colleges of Education who are expected to teach the young ones in the society are poorly trained. This further shows as evidence that, institutional effectiveness in Nigerian Colleges of Education appear questionable. However, Akiri and Ugborugbo (2008), Olanipekun, and Aina (2014) and Odunsi, (2015) observed that one of the obstacles to the development of education in Nigeria is half baked graduates which are produced by tertiary institutions.Francis (2015) equally reported that products ofColleges of Education are poorly trained and unproductive on their jobs. The implication for the persistence of this problem is that, these set of graduates may impact wrongknowledgeto the young ones who are leaders of tomorrow which could corrupt their minds.

To make a better improvement and smooth runningof institutional effectiveness, employer(Government), could make it possible to enhance  effective teaching  by adequate funding of the system and making conditions of service of academic staff favourable. Fajana (2012) stated that effectiveness of an institution lies on the personnel who come and worked together as a distinct group within the institution to achieveits stated goals. Therefore, performance of academic staff in Colleges of Education in respect of achieving institutional effectiveness seems to be a function of the formed group which forms a unionto achieve common goals. Goals most involved in by Unions include;protecting the integrity of its members jobs, achieving higher pay for its members, retaining the number of staff an employer hires, pressing for better working conditions of the academic staff in that institution as well as provision of infrastructural facilities in the system. Wagaki (2013) statedthat unions are demanded in higher institutions of learning for a number of reasons. For instance, unions seek to close the gap between labour and management in terms of wages and in representation or voice. Secondly, Unions donot only helping academic staff, but benefit employers by establishing open channels of communication between labour and employers of labour.

There is growing an assumption that labour unionism could likely influence institutional effectiveness in the area of teaching effectiveness. Labour unionism is the activity that higher institutions of learning recognise and understand its significant contributions towards institutional effectiveness.Labour unionism in Colleges of Education is an organization of academic staff who have cometogether to achieve common interest. Labour unionism, through its leadership, bargains with employers on behalf of union members and negotiates labour contracts with employers. This function of the labour Unions is termed Collective Bargaining. The most common purpose of these unions is to maintain or improve the conditions of their employment. Such maintenance or collective bargaining strategies include but not limited to;negotiation of wages, work rules, complaint procedures, rules governing hiring, firing and promotion of workers, benefits, workplace safety and policies. The main purpose of coming together as a union is because of the working environmentand conditions of service specified by the employers which might not fully meet the needs of the people working in that specific situation.Anonaba (2015) stated that the major reasons for labour unions embarking on strikes in most of Colleges of Education have always beenmismanagement of academic funds and non-payment of staff salaries as at and when due.

The appearance of mismanagement is a trace of corruption indicating that there could be corruption in these institutions especially in carrying out effective teaching and learning in these Colleges of Education. If corruption is not addressed in the context of this perspective, it will lead to low standard of education in the institutions.Akintoye and Uhunmwuangho (2018) observed that regular occurrences include unpaid teachers’ salaries, as well as the degeneration of educational facilities and infrastructure at all levels of the educational system. Considering the foregoing statement,strikes are now common place in these Colleges and such strikes lead to incessant closures of academic activities in these institutions in Nigeria. Theimplication for these closuresis that it often increases the number of years spent by students in the institutiondue to paralyzed teaching activities. In essence, it reduces the institutional efficiency of that school.

Staff industrial actions in Nigerian Colleges of Education have become the common phenomenon and it is to the detriment of studentssuccess. Despite the fact that, tongue and mouth are inseparable, clash between the academic staff and government is inevitable. As long as the academic staff union and employer (government) represented by politicians are at variance in belief and philosophy, there is likelihoodof industrial dispute between the two parties. Institutional effectiveness may be low, if industrial dispute is still persistent within the two parties. This could invariably affect academic performance of students in Colleges of Education. Students can equally graduate with mere certificates instead of knowledge that could benefit an entire society(Enomah and Joseph, 2010). There is a common saying that ‘When two elephants fight, it is the grasses that suffers. Students have been at the receiving end of strikes in Nigeria”. The periods of strikes could send students home unexpectedlyand some of them may misuse the periods of strike to get into many social vices (army robbery, pregnancy, political thuggeryand unpreparedfor marriages among others) that coulddistort their futureendeavours.The unions have always based their agitations on funding of the systemand conditions of service as well as salary at the level of government (Arikewuyo, 2008). Anonaba (2015) reported thatnearly all tertiary institutions embark on industrial actions, demanding for increment in salary.However, condition of service and funding of the system appear to be considered when labour unions embark on industrial actions.

Condition of service is one of the indices of agitations of labour unionism which seem to affect institutional effectiveness. Condition of service deals with the general requirement, rules and regulations that govern the job of academic staff in institutions.Conditions of service gives room for staff training and development both to academic staff and take care of staff from point of their entering to the terminal stage.Among the problems confronting Nigerian Colleges of Education is the perceived poor teaching of some academic staff which could be due to poor conditions of service. There is a common belief among educational planners and administrators, scholars and researchers that teaching as a profession deserves good attention if institutional effectiveness is to be attained (Wilson and Rosenfield, 2003). It appears that no concrete efforts have been made to actualize effective teaching in Colleges of Education. Academic staff in these Colleges of Education appear not enjoying some of the good conditions of service that could bring about high teaching effectiveness on their part such as; health insurance scheme, study leave, training and retrainingprogrammes, regular promotion, retirement benefits, proper pension arrangement, staff training remunerations, responsibility allowances, maternity leave among others (Keston,2015). However, the National Policy on Education (2014) affirmed that the provision of improved conditions of service and incentives makes the teaching profession more attractive.

Keston (2015)conducted a study on the impact of conditions of service on the performance of academic staff in tertiary institutions in Kogi State, Nigeria and revealed that there isa significant difference between promotion, prompt payment of salaries and the performance of academic staff in tertiary institutions in kogi state. However,the study showed that there was no significant difference between payment of retirement benefit and academic staff performance.Yusuf, Salako, Adedina and Ayelotan (2015)then laid credence to the factthat,theaction and counteraction of the College of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU) in recentyears to the recalcitrant attitude ofgovernment towards the conditionsof service, salaries and allowances as well as adequate funding was a key factor. TheCOEASU in these institutions hadfound that the employmentof strike as a last resort is meant to balance power between their staff and the government when bargaining and consultation failed to yield desirable result. The foregoing scenario has led to strike actions and consequently shot down the institutions. The fore mentioned issues have posed grave dangersto institutional effectiveness.

Yusuf,Agbonna andOlumorin(2010)maintained that,graduatesofNigerianFacultiesofEducationareinadequatelyprepared in both contentandpedagogy, hencetheycouldnotteachwellorsometimeimpactwrongknowledgewhichcould be as a result of frequent strikes.When academic staffembark on indefinite strike, it may not only disrupt the teaching activities of the Colleges but also affect institutional effectiveness in the area of academic performance of students.Bamiro (2012) observedthatseriesofstrike actions mayresulttoclosureofColleges forseveral months.When this happens, success of students could be underthreat.Akintoye and Uhunmwuangho (2018)conducted a study on the analysis of the effects of frequent strikes on academic performance of students in Nigerian Universities and found that frequent strikes had adverseeffects on the academic performance of students.

Asiyai (2013) corroborated the abovepositionthat thedisruptions in the  academic programmesofhigher education institutions of learning affectsinstitutional effectiveness,since many lecturers may finditdifficulttocomplete theircourseoutlines.Thefrequentdisputesandstrikesbyacademicstaffmay leavestudentsto end their semesteror academic session.Inmostcasesasemester’scourse outlinecould berushed toaccommodatethetimelosttostrikes.Thistypeofacademicrushcould be athreatto institutional effectiveness.Generally, incessant strikes have adverse effect on the economy. These effects include the suspension of academic activities, and disruptions of academic calendar, laziness of students, increase in crimes in the society, degrading the academic profile of Nigeria, loss of jobs, inactive economic activities and delay in registration of graduate students with National Youth Service Corps among others (Anonaba, 2014).

It is obvious that agitations of academic staff unions are to foster theadequate conditions of service which would go a long way in promoting effective teaching and learning in Colleges of Education. This would invariably reduce to the barest minimum if not to zero level the half-baked graduates or functionalilliterates that Nigerian tertiary institutions are turning out lately. Funny enough, the strike actionoften embarked upon byCOEASUalways put students at detrimental conditions(Yusuf, Salako, Adedina and Ayelotan, 2015). These scholars further added that these students may end up having lower periods of time to prepare for academicexercises before summative evaluation; hence the possibility of poor academic performance may be certain. Afterthe whole struggle, the academic staff salaries and other benefits that government withhold for some months during theindustrial action would end up being paid, then at the end of the day, management of the institution may call students to come and write exam in which they are not adequately prepared for. This type of examination could lead to failure of students and thus both affect and influence institutional effectiveness.

Funding the educational system is another factor of labour unionismthat seems to influence institutional effectiveness. Over the years, the issue of funding has been a source of crisis in the Nigeria educational system.Funding of education is major reasons why some of tertiary institutions embark on indefinite strike when government fails to attend to their demands. Various organizations such as NigeriaLabour Congress, Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), trade unions, COEASU, Non-government organization among others have pointed the attention of government to the poor funding of the system especially in the area of effective teaching and provision of infrastructural facilities. Poor funding on research and facilities for effective teaching in Colleges of Education may result to strike actions by the union since that is the only language that government understands. Akintoye and Uhunmwuangho (2018) noted that poor financial investment on tertiary education has generally been seen as a plague to the extent that budget allocation to education sector has beenvery lowcompared to other sectors. These scholars add that the funding of education has become poorer.Studies have equally shown that African countries spend as little on research compared to developed countries (Saint, 2009).The effect of the poor funding on teaching effectiveness,quality research and infrastructural facilities could be a big threat to institutional effectiveness in Colleges of Education.

Funding constraints to education has been mainly the result of government insistence that it remain virtually the sole source of financial support for institutions of higher learning (Saint, Hartnett and Strassner, 2003).Most times, when academic process gets interrupted with strike, all ongoing teaching activitieswould be abandoned or delayed; students keep their books in shelves and when the strike is called off, both students and lecturers are mentally weak. The products of teaching which are capable to promote economy of a nation are lost within the period of strike. Some of them may be used as political thugs while some female students among them engaged in prostitution. Thus, an academic institution disrupted with so many strikes cannot guarantee institutional effectiveness because the time that is to be spent inteaching is already spent in crisis and conflict with government(Anonaba, 2015).Funding to support effective teaching in Colleges of Education seems to be inadequate in quantity and epileptic in supply thus making it difficult for academic staff to achieve institutional effectiveness.It is noted that most of the available infrastructural facilities are appeared to be in deplorable condition due to poor funding of colleges of education whichseems to havenegative effect on institutional effectiveness.

Poorly funded infrastructural facilities usually cause strike action by the academic staff of the institution.Bello (2011) stated that infrastructural facilities are crucial for lecturers’ jobeffectiveness. This scholar added that provision of infrastructural facilities like school buildings, social amenities;equipment and instructional facilities have positivesignificant impacts on the academic goals achievements of institutions. However, without funding Colleges of Education,infrastructural facilities are as stake and academic staff may not be productive.In view of this, out of all the related existing studies, no one has focused on contribution of labour unionism to institutional effectiveness in Colleges of Education. In an attempt to fill the gap left by previous researchers, this study examined contribution of labour unionism to institutional effectiveness in Osun State College of Education, Ilesa, Osun Sate Nigeria.

Statement of the Problem

Observation from literatures shows that institutional effectiveness appears to be low especially when labourunion embarks on indefinite strike.The higher the number or degree of union struggle in the form of work boycott, strike actions and sympathy strike, the more the problems faced by the institutions and the lower the institutional effectiveness. It is also noted that some of academic staff of Colleges of Educationappears to engage in selling study materials for the students and greedy with sandwich programme in order to survive, while some claim to be unfavourablecondition of service and poor funding of the system that labour union agitated for its members. Some of academic staff equally seem not to be truly dedicated and committed to the teaching and learning activities in Colleges of Education.

Research suggests that low institutional effectiveness could be attributed to manyreasons why labourunionism embarks on strike for several months in the Colleges of Education.These reasonswhich include unfavourable condition of service, poor funding of the system, poor salary, among others could contribute to the low institutional effectiveness.Could labour unionism contribute to institutional effectiveness? It is against this background that the paper examinedthe contribution of labour unionism to the institutional effectiveness inOsun State College of EducationIlesa, Ousn State, Nigeria.

Purpose of the Study

The main purpose of this study was to examine the contribution of labour unionism to institutional effectiveness inOsun State College of Education,Ilesa, Osun State, Nigeria. Specifically, the study seeks to find out the level of institutional effectiveness and state of labourunionism inthe Collegeof Education,Ilesa, Osun State, Nigeria.

Research Questions

  1. What is the level of institutional effectiveness in Osun State College of Education, Ilesa, Osun State, Nigeria?
  2. what is the state of labour unionism in Osun State College of Education Ilesa, Osun State, Nigeria?

 Hypotheses

The following hypotheses were raised to guide the study:

  1. There will be no relative contribution of labour unionism (condition of service and funding of the system) toinstitutional effectiveness inOsun State College of Education, Ilesa, Osun State, Nigeria.
  2. There will be no joint contribution of labour unionism (condition of service and funding of the system) to institutional effectiveness in Osun State College of Education, Ilesa, Osun State, Nigeria.

Methodology

This study adopted the descriptive survey research design. The population of the study comprised 127 academic staff spread across five schools (Schools of Education; Arts and Social Sciences, Science, Language and Vocational and Technology) in the College. It is from this population that the sample for this study was selected. The purposive random sampling technique was adopted  to select 100 academic staff who  are  full time lecturers in the College while two students who have received lecture from each of  the sampled academic staff using simple sampling technique  made up 200 students sampled.The research instrument for the study is a validated questionnaire; Labour Unionism Questionnaire (LUQ) and Institutional Effectiveness Questionnaire (IEQ). The two instruments were subjected to Cronbach alpha statistical tool for testing reliability and was found to be r=0.85 and 0.76 respectively. Descriptive statistics such as simple percentages, mean, standard deviation and frequency countswere adopted for analyzing the research questions while multiple regressionanalysis was used totest the hypotheses formulated.

 

 

 

Presentation and Analysis of Results

  1. What is the level of institutional effectiveness in Osun State Colleges of Education Ilesa, Osun State, Nigeria?

Table 1:Level of Institutional Effectiveness

Frequency Percentage Mean( ) St. Deviation
Low 80 40.0  

1.60

 

0.491

High 120 60.0
Total 200 100.0

 

The level of institutional effectivenessas shown in Table 1 reveals that 80 (40.0%) of respondents confirmed that there is low institutional effectiveness while 120 (60.0%) of respondents surveyed in the studyindicated high level of institutional effectiveness with mean and standard deviation value of 1.60 and 0.491. Based on this result,thelevel of institutional effectiveness is high inOsun State College of Education Ilesa, Nigeria. This shows that there is institutional effectiveness through effective teaching in Osun State College of Education Ilesa Nigeria.

  1. What is the state oflabour unionism in Osun State College of Education Ilesa, Nigeria?

Table 2:State ofLabour Unionism

 

Frequency Percentage Mean St. Deviation
Poor 17 17.0  

1.83

 

0.378

Good 83 83.0
Total 100 100.0

 

Table 2 shows that 17 (17.0%) of respondents sampled in this study were of the opinion that there is a poor state of labour unionism while 83 (83.0%) of the respondents confirmed that the state or level oflabour unionism in Osun State College of Education Ilesais goodwith mean and standard deviation value of 1.83 and 0.453.Considering this analysis, it is observed that the state oflabour unionism in Osun State College of Education Ilesa, is good and at maximal level.

 

 

Hypotheses 

Hypothesis 1

There will be no relative contributions of labour unionism (funding of the system and condition of service) toinstitutional effectiveness inOsun State Colleges of EducationIlesa, Nigeria.

Table 3:  Relative Contribution of Labour Unionism to Institutional Effectiveness

Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients T Sig.
β Std. Error Beta
(Constant) 18.869 0.427 44.155 0.000
Funding of the System 0.321 0.089 0.718 3.618 0.000
Condition of Service 0.277 0.080 0.682 3.439 0.001

 

Table 3 shows the contribution of each of the independent variables and all the independent variables (funding of the system and condition of service)as shown to have significant contribution to institutional effectiveness (p<0.05). Funding of the system has highest contribution to institutional effectiveness (β = 0.718; t = 3.618; p<0.05) and followed by condition of service (β = 0.682; t = 3.439; p<0.05).This shows thatfunding of the system and condition of service relatively contributed to institutional effectivenesswhen all independent variables are considered together. Based on this analysis, the null hypothesis is rejected. This reveals that there is relative contribution of (funding of the system and condition of service) to institutional effectiveness in Osun StateCollege of Education.This finding is consistent with the work ofAkpan (2013) who found that job security and job satisfaction made significant relative contributions to the organizational commitment of university teachers.

 

 

 

 

 

Hypothesis 2

There is no joint contribution of labour unionism (funding of the system and condition of service) to institutional effectiveness in Osun State Colleges of Education, Nigeria.

Table 4: Joint Contribution andInstitutional Effectiveness

R = 0.250

R Square =0.062

Adjusted R Square =0.053

Model Sum of Squares df Mean Square f Sig.
Regression 106.288 2 53.144 6.555 0.002
Residual 1597.107 197 8.107
Total 1703.395 199

 

Table 4 shows that there is a joint contribution among the independent variables (funding of the system and condition of service) and the dependent variable (Institutional effectiveness) with R = 0.250. This shows that independent variables accounted for 6.2% of the total variation in the dependent variable (Adjusted R2=0. 053, F (2, 197) = 6.555, p<0.05). This joint contribution is shown to be significant. Therefore the hypothesis is rejected. This reveals that there is a significant contribution of (funding of the system and condition of service) to institutional effectiveness in Osun State College of EducationIlesa, Nigeria. On the joint contribution, the result of the study is in line with the finding of Anonaba (2015)who reported that nearly all the tertiary institutions embarked on industrial actions, demanding for increment of salary. The finding is also agrees with the finding of Bello (2011) who stated that infrastructural facilities are crucial for lecturers’ jobeffectiveness.

 

Implication for Managing Corruption in Colleges of Education

It is noted that when government makespayment of outstanding allowances and salaries, purchase of facilities,library and laboratory materials in order to improve effective teaching and learning and general welfare of academic staff.Colleges of education authorities may mismanage the funds and allocate money to things that have no bearing on teaching and learning.If this happens, it shows that there is corruption in managing Colleges of Education. If this is not tackled, it can lead to low standard of education in the institutions and inability to effectively manage the resources available.

Conclusion

Based on the findings of this study, it can be concluded that, state of labour unionismis good and at maximal levelwhile level of institutional effectiveness in Osun State College of Education Ilesa, is highly effective. Funding of the system is the highest contributor to institutional effectiveness.

Recommendations

Based on the findings, the following recommendations are hereby made:

  1. Government should give more attention to funding of the system and condition of service of the academic staff in order to improve institutional effectiveness in the College of Education Ilesa. There is the need to fund the institution effectively, so that the goals of the Colleges can be achieved.
  2. Effective teaching should be sustained by the academic staff of Colleges of Education since institutional effectiveness is high.
  3. Recognition oflabour unionsand their contributions in the Colleges of Education brings harmonies, working relationship between the unions,labour and management. Therefore it is crucial that such relationship should be continued so as to enhance institutional effectiveness.
  4. Management of the Colleges of Education should try as much as possible to maintain a good and cordial relationship with their union members if institutional effectiveness is to be achieved.
  5. Management must also identifyemployees ‘demands especially in the salary increment in order to boost the academic staff morale towards institutional effectiveness.

 

 

 

 

 

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