Nigeria in Focus: Improving the Process of Adult Education Monitoring for Sustainability
Immaculate Okello H. T.
Department of Educational Foundation, Kampala International University Uganda
Adult education is a transformative learning activity that aims to improve skills and competence for personal and societal benefit. It is a lifelong learning activity that spans formal and non-formal scopes. Adults engage in adult education for personal knowledge enhancement and socio-economic and political participation. However, adult education has been neglected by the government, despite its potential to transform the country. Monitoring adult education is crucial to address mistakes and ensure the sustainability of this form of education in Nigeria. Monitoring allows individuals to rectify issues in project or program development, allowing for appropriate intervention. This paper highlights the challenges of monitoring adult education and recommends the need for its continuous improvement for the sustainability of adult education in Nigeria.
Keywords: Adult education, Sustainability, Development, Monitoring, Learning
The major factor in human progress is still education. It is regarded as the engine behind significant advancements in every human civilization. Any educational system should aim to produce or develop a well-rounded person who can live in his surroundings and make a significant contribution to the survival of the society to which he belongs. One of the main professions that can adequately address the socioeconomic, cultural, political, and environmental issues that adults face is adult education. It is impossible to overstate how effective adult education has been in fulfilling the objectives outlined in the . More than any other profession, adult education transforms the social and psychological minds of adults, restores lost hope, and frees them from the stereotype that they are incapable of learning. Adult education helps learners become more conscious of their potentials in their social, economic, cultural, and political environments, as well as their psychological potentials and untapped skills. In terms of the advancement of the nation, it also has a significant impact on society as a whole. Adult education picks up where traditional education leaves off, when a teacher instills a student’s desire for information, understanding, and education.
Adult education is focused with helping/assisting individuals (adults) to live more successfully as useful and accepted members of their communities and to actively contribute to the development of their cultures, according to . Adult education does not focus on preparing people for life. In order to achieve sociopolitical and economic success in their endeavors, adult education teaches adult students who are parents or guardians better ways to manage the resources at hand. It also provides referrals that help other people, organizations, and institutions deal with human problems as well as the society in which they find themselves. More than any other profession, adult education serves as a barrier between adult learners, the community, and policymakers in human civilizations. The adult educator is aware of the issues preventing successful adult teaching and learning as well as efficient management of the adult education sector. The only profession that adequately supports adult learners in their endeavors to learn is adult education. According to , adequate knowledge of the learner is necessary, as is adequate knowledge of the value constructs that motivate the learner and the capacity to help the learner acquire necessary attitudes and modify negative ones. Additionally, Okafor states that adequate knowledge of the learner and the factors that affect how well they respond during the educational process is necessary. The aforementioned claim demonstrates how unique the field of adult education is. Adult education, in contrast to every other profession, works with “adult human materials” and environmental issues that inspire delight, interest, pride, and enthusiasm in the individual. Working with “adults” creates lasting and contagious impressions, which, in contrast to working with other professionals, encourages adult learners to put the theoretical concepts inherent in adult education into practice. Unfortunately, the remuneration for adult educators working in adult literacy centers is pitiful and does not match the quality of their job. They also work in uninspiring environments without the essential teaching and learning resources. In managing the adult education program, the adult educator experiences stress, abuse, and violence from this clientele and the government. He is now disillusioned in his career as a result. Adult education programs still mostly function as disjointed, piecemeal activities that are not linked into a cohesive, purposeful plan in pursuit of a relatively development vision, according to . All of these in a way constantly shorten the career of adult education. The adult educator feels awful because he is really committed to doing good by changing his students and purposefully improving society. All of these have the effect of devaluing adult education, which causes people to have poor self-esteem, especially when contrasted to other professions like medical, law, engineering, etc. Adult education in the 21st century is often confronted with difficulties in the face of all of this. Despite the fact that the adult workforce in this country is currently employed in the production sectors and will ultimately alter this nation, adult education has been neglected by the government. When the majority of the population of a country, particularly the adults who work in the productive sectors of the economy, lacks literacy, adult education’s goals cannot be met.  notes that underdevelopment, instability, low productivity, low income, bad health, high poverty, and mortality rates are all linked to illiteracy. A former National Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education in Nigeria chairman named  once noted that: “A cursory look at the political climate of the world shows clearly that regions of mass illiteracy are generally regions of instability, economic and political underdevelopment.” This statement was made in recognition of these ills. An illiterate is marginal in the economy and absolutely ignorant in politics. The human race looks to the adult education system in the twenty-first century for the correct solutions to the challenges of the age, and the standard of adult education experts accessible to the populace is the key to adult education providing effective solutions. In order to meet the difficulties of the twenty-first century, this article advocates for a revision of adult education in Nigeria.
Concept of Monitoring
Various authors on the issue have varied interpretations of what the idea of monitoring signifies. The differing opinions of various authors on monitoring are influenced by their various vantage points on the human environment. A systematic method of keeping track of a project or program of activities throughout the course of a society’s growth is referred to as monitoring. According to , monitoring is the process of keeping track of how a development project is progressing to ensure that everything is operating as it should in order to meet deadlines for making necessary corrections to the project in question. Monitoring essentially gives individuals a chance to fix problems as soon as a flaw in a project or program’s development in the human environment is discovered. The term “monitoring” may also refer to the activity of regularly reviewing the status of a project or program’s execution in order to make the necessary adjustments to the project or program’s societal growth. According to , monitoring is the act of regularly assessing the state of development in order to decide what steps should be taken to undertake development projects or programs in the community. Therefore, the goal of monitoring is to promote effectiveness and efficient service delivery in the society’s implementation of development initiatives and programs.
Monitoring Adult Education Projects and Programmes for Sustainability in Nigeria: Challenges
- Poor utilization of feedback from monitoring: Poor use of the input from monitoring adult education projects and programs is a critical issue that prevents Nigeria from providing effective monitoring of adult education projects and programs. For the sake of improving adult education initiatives and programs, the monitoring’s input should be used effectively.
- Poor involvement of relevant stakeholders and communities in monitoring implementation: It is obvious that ineffective monitoring of the execution of adult education initiatives and programs is a major barrier to efficient service delivery in this area. For improved outcomes, it is vital to buck this tendency.
- Poor funding of monitoring of adult education projects and programmes: The insufficient and erratic funding of adult education in particular and education in general in Nigeria is what defines the poor funding of monitoring of adult education initiatives and programs. According to , who quotes Maduewesi, monitoring is woefully inadequate due to a lack of funding, which prevents consistent and efficient monitoring. Adult education can be given a sufficient budgetary allocation in Nigeria to enable the successful provision of services there. Effective monitoring and tracking of budget expenditures will be necessary for the successful execution of adult education projects and programs. This will encourage accountability and openness in the management and execution of projects or programs.
- Lack of appropriate continuing professional development:Effective monitoring of the execution of adult education initiatives and programmes in Nigeria is hindered by the lack of proper ongoing professional development for adult education personnel. In order to provide effective monitoring of adult education programs and programmes for sustainability in Nigeria, this tendency has to alter.
- Lack of detailed work plans: Effective monitoring of adult education initiatives and programs in Nigeria is further hampered by the absence of specific work plans by all pertinent departments, divisions, or sections. For the efficient monitoring of adult education initiatives and programs in Nigeria, a thorough work plan is urgently needed.
- Lack of adequate technical knowledge: In a developing nation like Nigeria, a lot of task-team members for monitoring lack the technical expertise necessary for efficient monitoring of adult education initiatives and programs. According to , many task-team members lack the necessary technical expertise for this difficult project. In order to drive successful service delivery during the execution of adult education initiatives and programs in Nigeria, task-team members urgently need strategic training.
- Inadequacy of facilities and resources: The promotion of effective monitoring of the execution of adult education initiatives and programs in Nigeria is also hampered by a lack of facilities and resources. In order to conduct adult education initiatives and programs in Nigeria effectively, suitable facilities and resources must be made available.
- Lack of institutional support: Another issue that hinders the administration, monitoring, and execution of adult education initiatives and programs in Nigeria is a lack of institutional support. In order to increase opportunities for managing adult education projects and programs for sustainability in the nation, it is important to look at a few initiatives. For the right stakeholders, monitoring offers valuable learning opportunities to investigate how to improve the efficiency of adult education initiatives and programs for sustainability. According to , there must be some groups that offer adult learners opportunity to study. According to , the departments of adult and non-formal education at numerous universities, polytechnics, and colleges of education, as well as adult education centers, local government education authorities (LGEAs), state and federal governments, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), both locally and internationally, should work together to explore opportunities that institutional support for projects in the society offers.  fervently urges the use of cross-organizational collaboration in this kind of social endeavor. Effective service delivery has many chances thanks to appropriate institutional support. According to , institutional support arrangements provide several options for the society, including the provision of suitable funds for adult education projects and programs, exchange programs, and inter-project visits. The establishment of substantial institutional support is still lacking in monitoring the implementation and management of adult education projects and programmes for sustainability in Nigeria.
Prospects of monitoring of adult education projects and programmes for sustainability in Nigeria
The prospects of monitoring of adult education projects and programmes for sustainability in Nigeria include:
- Provision of good information: In Nigeria, adult education projects and programs are considered as having a strong future if accurate information is made available. According to , effective project and program monitoring should deliver frequent information on activities so that stakeholders may track their progress. For the proper execution and administration of the relevant projects and programmes in the human environment, the right use of the information received through monitoring of projects and programmes is highly important.
- Monitoring of projects and programmes helps greatly to control costs of projects and programmes: It is important to maintain budget monitoring for projects and programs in order to offer services effectively. According to , it is best for project implementation to continue budget monitoring while the project is being carried out. It is safe to say that this manages project expenses in a human setting.
- Maintain the use of good standard: Another crucial aspect of keeping track of adult education initiatives and programs in Nigeria is the desire to make sure that high standards are being upheld.  makes the accurate observation that project and program monitoring aids in determining if high standards are being upheld in the relevant projects and programs in the society. This implies that monitoring is utilized to uphold high standards in initiatives and programs that affect the human environment. Monitoring aids in ensuring that adult education initiatives and programmes for sustainability in Nigeria attain a good degree of quality and achievement that is judged acceptable.
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CITE AS: Immaculate Okello H. T. (2023). Nigeria in Focus: Improving the Process of Adult Education Monitoring for Sustainability. IAA Journal of Education 9(3):14-18. https://doi.org/10.59298/IAAJE/2023/3.10.1000