A Functional Perspective of Education as the Bedrock of National Development in Nigeria

International Journal of Research and Innovation in Social Science (IJRISS) | Volume III, Issue I, January 2019 | ISSN 2454–6186

A Functional Perspective of Education as the Bedrock of National Development in Nigeria


Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo, Ogun State, Nigeria

Abstract: True education is that in which learners are equipped with the ability to perceive accurately, think clearly, and act effectively. This equipping is accomplished via the three domains of education: cognitive, affective and sensory. In other words, education is said to be effective when learners acquire knowledge, develop skills, and adopt values. Education that fails to address these three domains cannot bring about significant development either for the individual or the society at large. Reports of a continuous downward trend in the quality of education have been a major concern for stakeholders for more than three decades. The deficiencies of the Nigerian education system could possibly be attributed to a faulty understanding of the components, goals and essence of education because the overriding perspective of education held by each society and culture determines the approach, plan and policies put in place to facilitate the educational process. This study therefore considered the components and goals of education, the difference between schooling and education, and the relationship between course of study and education. Using a plethora of books, articles and internet publications, the study analyzed different perspectives on education, its components and goals, with the intent of bringing forth a clear understanding of a functional education system. This approach is hinged on the assumption that a better understanding will lead to a re-appraisal of the current system of education in Nigeria in relation to its genuine alignment to the much touted desire for national development. The paper concluded that education can only be described as excellent when individuals and their societies are positively impacted by the knowledge acquired. Absence of tangible national development in terms of productivity of various sectors and poor standard of living, porous methods of handling crime and anti-social behavior, corruption and bad governance are clear indicators of a dysfunctional system of education. A system of education that fails to have positive impact on society may have succeeded at making people literate but has woefully failed in getting them educated. This study therefore recommended that stakeholders in the education sector be given proper orientation on what functional education is and how such can be adopted and utilized for national development.

Key Words: Functional education, positive impact, system of education, domain of education, national development

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