Mielekeo ya wanafunzi kuhusu ufundishaji wa stadi za mawasiliano kwa kiswahili katika taasisi za kiufundi za kitaifa nchini Kenya
Kavoi, Jackson Mutuku
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Attitudes are feelings which people have towards something or a certain object and they are crucial in influencing an individual‘s response. Attitudes as well,activates peoples‘ inner perceptions towards certain objects, situations or subjects, for example, teaching of Communication Skills in Kiswahili in national polytechnics. Basically, any pronouncement on language policy, especially in the education system, should consider the attitudes of those who may be affected. Therefore, it is out of this realizationthat an analysis of students‘ attitudes towards the use of Kiswahili in teaching Communication Skills in national polytechnics is of utmost importance. The first objective of this study was to analyse attitudes of students taking science courses as well as those students taking Arts courses towards teaching of Communication Skills in Kiswahili in Kenyan national polytechnics. The second objective was to find out lecturers‘, education officers‘ and curriculum developers‘ views on the importance of teaching Communication Skills in Kiswahili in national polytechnics. Lastly, this study sought to examine the students‘ views on the importance of Kiswahili in technical education. This study was guided by the Theory of Reasoned Action and Functionalism.A descriptive survey design was used to guide the study. 5 institutions and a sample of 148 respondents was used, drawn from a population of 991 students. Balian‘s (1988) formula was used to select the sample size. Others were 20 lecturers from the 5 national polytechnics, one official from the Ministry of Higher Education Science and Technology (MOHEST) and another from Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD). Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS) and content analysis tools were used to analyse data. The results indicated that 2.82% of the 142 respondents, depicted negative attitude, while 97.18% were mostly positive about being taught Communication Skills in Kiswahili. Students pursuing arts-related courses posted low positive attitudes compared to those pursuing science courses. Likewise, the diploma students posted low positive attitudes compared to the certificate students. On the other hand, gender influenced attitudes towards the use of Kiswahili in teaching communications skills. Female students posted higher positive attitudes compared to their counter parts. The education stakeholders with an exception of the MOHEST official, felt there was a need to use Kiswahilialongside English in teaching of communication skills. Moreso, they were of the opinion that certificate students may be used as front runners in the teaching of the subject. Although English is the official language and a medium of instruction, Kiswahili language has very important roles to play in technical institutions. Some of these roles include day to day communication among the students, clarification of concepts in class especially to the certificate students, guidance and counseling, communication between the students and the support staff, sevice deliverly, academic discussions during preparation forinternal and externalexaminations among other roles. The findings of this study will benefit graduates and the receipients of their services by making communication simple, concise and clear. MOHEST and KICD may find it necessary to review their policy towards teaching of communication skills in technical institutes.
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