Factors Affecting The Efficient Management Of Students’ Academic Records
This study aimed at finding out the factors affecting the efficient management of students’ academic records. When school senior lecturers fail to adhere strictly to effective and accurate records keeping management, achievement of effective school management will always be at the crossroads. Similarly, poor and inaccurate records keeping in school system dwindle and prevent understanding of real school events and activities. This study therefore, become very imperative with a view to advance remedial steps in the event of poor and inaccurate records keeping in the University of Benin,Edo state.
The study was carried out with four (4) research questions and three (3) hypothesis. The researcher’s developed questionnaire was the instrument used in collecting data from 52 senior lecturers and 364 lecturers randomly selected from the University of Benin. From the reactions of the respondents, the following two major findings were made. There are so many problems associated with records keeping management in secondary school system. That through various ideal administrative practices and strategies, there will be holistic improvement on records keeping in school system. In view of these findings, it was recommended that senior lecturers and lecturers should employ ideal administrative practices and strategies to improve on records keeping management in secondary school system towards ensuring valid and reliable school information.
Table Of Contents
- Title page
- Certification page
- Table of content
- 1.1 Background of the Study
- 1.2 Statement of the Problem
- 1.3 Purpose of the Study
- 1.4 Research Questions
- 1.5 Hypothesis
- 1.6 Significance of the Study
- 1.7 Scope of the Study
Review Of Literature
- 2.1 Conceptual Framework
- 2.2 Concept of Secondary School
- 2.3 Concept of Management
- 2.4 Concept of Records
- 2.5 Concept of School Records Management
- 2.6 Theoretical framework
- 2.7 Systems theory
- 2.8 Human Relations theory
- 2.9 Review of Empirical Studies
- 2.10 Summary of literature review
- 3.1 Design of the Study
- 3.2 Population of the Study
- 3.3 Sampling and Sampling Technique
- 3.4 Instrument for Data Collection
- 3.5 Validation of the Instrument
- 3.6 Reliability of the Instrument
- 3.7 Method of Data Collection
- 3.8 Method of Data Analysis
Presentation Of Data Analysis
Discussion Of Findings, Recommendations And Conclusion Of The Study
- 5.1 Discussion of Findings
- 5.2 Conclusion
- 5.3 Recommendations
- 5.4 Limitations of the Study
- 5.5 Suggestion for Further Studies
1.1 Background Of The Study
Record keeping in an organizational set-up is very important and cannot be overemphasized. This is because continuity depends on availability of useful records of past activities. In a complex organization like that of the university, it is not possible to keep every information in the brain because the volume of information is heavy, therefore records must be kept.
The keeping of records predated the existence of man. For instance, in Genesis l and 2 God kept a chronological record of all his creations of the world from day one when he created the heaven and earth to the seventh day when he rested from all his works which he had made.
In Nigeria, Education law demands that every educational institution should keep certain school records such as log book, admission register, visitors book ,inventory book, account book etc The keeping of record is often organized around a life cycle that all records should follow viz-creation, storage, retrieval (for use as needed), retention and disposition which includes protecting all vital documents (records).
According to the International Organization for Standardization 2001, record can be defined as information created, received and maintained as evidence and information by an organization or person in pursuance of legal obligation or in the transaction of business.
Mbiti (1978) sees school records as comprising all the books and files or other document containing information relating to what goes on in that school, who is in the school as well as what type of property the school owns. According to the Fund and Wagnalls Standard Desk Dictionary (2000), record is an account in writing or other permanent form serving as a memorial or authentic evidence of facts or events. It is regarded as information handed down or preserved.
Record management is the practice of maintaining the records of an organization from the time they are created up to their eventual disposal; this may include –classifying, storing, securing and destruction (or in some cases, archival preservation) of records. Record management is primarily concerned with the evidence of an organization’s activities and is usually applied according to the value of the records rather than their physical format. In the past, record management was sometimes used to refer to only to the management of records which were no longer in everyday use but still needed to be kept (semi-current or inactive records) often stored in basement of offsite. More modern usage tends to refer to the entire life cycle of records – from the point of creation right through until their disposal. An academic record or academic transcript is an official statement of all results achieved through study. It includes a complete listing of all the courses, the credit points achieved for courses and the grade point average (G.P.A), if applicable and a complete status, if you have already graduated from your course. Additional information is provided to help understand your academic record.
Every student who has ever been enrolled at the university will have details of their achievements recorded in the university database, the official record of these achievements is called an academic record or academic transcript; this record details your entire academic history with the university.
Record keeping occupies a strategic position in the efficient and effective management of the university system. Infact, it is central in the administration of institutions of learning because it documents the planning and implementation of appropriate course of services allowing monitoring of work. In the conventional paper based organization such as the universities, paper continues to be viewed as the materials for records in administrative documentations (Igwoku 2008).
The approach is for records created in the course of day-to-day business of the universities to be stored and kept in hard copies as evidence of an action, decision or process. However, the process of record keeping provides a framework for keeping, maintaining and providing for the disposition of records and what is contained in them. They are therefore intended to benefit all members of staff by facilitating continuity and evaluation of services and preserving privacy.
This framework is provided for by guidelines designed to educate people on decisions regarding professional record keeping. For instance, American psychological association (APA 2007) contains the “ethical principles of psychologist and code of conduct” generally required for the maintenance of appropriate records of psychological services.
In Nigeria, just as in America, the nature and extent of the record will vary depending upon the purpose, setting and context of the services. However, whatever the record may be, it is important that the staff get familiar with the legal and ethical requirement for record keeping in their specific professional context and jurisdiction. Generally, record keeping must be guided by some level of confidentiality, proper maintenance security, preservation of the content and context etc (Uwaifo 2004, Akporhonor and Iwhiwhu 2007).
Unfortunately, the Nigeria situation in the business of record keeping and management especially in the university system has not been too successful because of lack of management components (Omeyi, 1997). Writing in support of the above finding, Ibiam (2004) noted that many years of neglect had done great damage to the education sector and record keeping is not an exemption. In his view, Iginodala, 1998) believes that personnel (secretaries and filling clerks) who maintain the registry system with filling cabinets containing the paper evidence of university business are inadequate and infact ignorant of their responsibilities.
This calls to question the reliability and authenticity of records kept in such a system. Giving credence to this Afolabi (1999) asserted that record management practice in Nigeria has a number of problems which may include insufficient skilled and experienced record management personnel and possibly, low priority of record management in the scheme of things. Awe (2000) viewed the problem in record keeping from the perspective of these bodies – government, university management, the staff and the sutdnets. He accused these bodies of being responsible for unavailable inaccurate/incomplete and dishonest records.
And according to (Ututlu 2001) these adversely affect planning for and provision of structures and facilities, adequate finding, proper formulation and review of policies. Other associated problems of record keeping identified generally in the educational system in Nigeria include lack of record manual and filing guidelines which lead to loss of vital information (Egwunyenga 2005) and inadequate computer terminals (Oketunji, 20020 others are difficulty in record retrieval and lack of appreciation by management and staff of the need for well controlled records (Egunleti 2001). The result of the forgoing is high profile failure in accountability.
The management of these problems would mean the development of efficient and effective options within and between universities this indeed requires urgent attention. Ogundele (2001) believes there is serious training need for staff. Full introduction and sustenance of computer and internet services as well as record management integration (Baje 1998; Fadokun 2004) adequate manual classification, security, storage facilities and funds are generally recommended for good record keeping (Tower 20040. It is hoped that if these options are adopted in the university system, perhaps most, if not all the problems associated with record keeping would have been addressed.
1.2 Statement Of The Problems
Record keeping can be viewed as very important in any organization as it helps in the storage/preservation and retrieval of vital information needed for future purposes. Unfortunately, in Nigerian universities today, not much importance is attached to record keeping. This has resulted into the dearth of useful information needed for the growth and expansion of these institutions.
Records keeping and management practice in Nigerian universities is bedeviled with a lot of set backs such as: inadequately trained staff who are incompetent to be incharge of record keeping, the use of manual system rather than computerized methods for storing vital information, the negative altitude of staff towards record keeping, improper security of records, lack of record keeping policy, inadequate resource as well as lack of record retention and deposition schedule.
Undoubtedly, having accurate records is paramount to avoiding a disconnection and ensuring a cohesive continuity in the affairs of any organization with the inclusion of Nigerian universities.
1.3 Purpose of Study
The main purpose of this study was to investigate the factors affecting the efficient management of students’ academic records. specifically, the study:
- Found out what school records are presently kept in universities.
- Determined the administrative practice factors that characterize record keeping in universities.
- Found out the problems associated with keeping of school records.
- Determined the strategies for improvement of school records management.
1.4 Research Questions
The following research questions guided the study:
- What are the school records presently kept in the University of Benin?
- What are the administrative practices characterize the keeping of records in universities?
- What problems are associated with keeping the school records?
- What are the strategies for the improvement of school records management in the University of Beninzone.
The following null hypothesis were formulated for this study and were tested at 0.05 level of significance:
Ho1: There is no significant difference between the mean ratings of secondary school senior lecturers and lecturers with regard to school records that are kept in the University of Benin.
Ho2: There is no significant difference between the mean ratings of secondary school senior lecturers and lecturers with regard to the problems associated with record keeping in universities.
Ho3: There is no significant difference between the mean ratings of senior lecturers and lecturers with regard to the strategies for improving school records keeping in universities.
1.6 Significance of the Study
The importance of this study is to identify the factors affecting efficient management of students academic records in the university of Benin. This study will be of paramount importance to student. In other words it will help students to have a comprehensive data and easy access to their academic records at any given point in time. It will also help those who are in charge of record keeping in the university have easy storage, update and retrieval of academic records. This study would equally contribute to the body of literature already existing by way of expanding the knowledge of the factors affecting efficient management of students academic records as well as its usefulness to future research.
1.7 Scope of the Study
The geographical scope of this study covered all the University of Benin. Specifically, the study focuses on the records that are presently kept in universities. It was also concerned with determining the administrative practices that characterize the keeping of records in universities, find out the problems associated with keeping of school records and determine the strategies for improvement of the school records keeping in universities.
Discussion Of Findings, Recommendations, Summary And Conclusion Of The Study
This chapter presents the discussion of findings of this study, conclusion, implications, recommendations and limitations, suggestions for further research study and summary of the study. Discussions are made in accordance with the research questions and hypotheses formulated for the study
Discussion of Findings
School Records that are kept in Universities
From the responses made on research question one of the study, it was agreed that the records currently kept in universities are; admission and withdrawal register, log book, attendance register, school timetable, diary of work, visitors book, exam record, time movement book, a copy of National policy on education, and lesson note.
This finding is in consonance with that of Godwin (2013), who states that for school to be effective in the area of record keeping, there should be a proper record of the following admission and withdrawal register, log book, attendance register, school time table, diary of work, visitors book, exam record, time movement book, a copy of National policy on Education and lesson note.
Administrative Practices that Characterize keeping of School Records
With regard to the second research question which elicits information on the administrative practices that characterize keeping of the school records, the respondents agreed on the administrative practices that characterize the keeping of school records. Specifically, these practices include; delegating day-to-day school keeping record to school lecturers, recording events as occurred in the appropriate record booklet, keeping accurate custody of record materials, monitoring lecturers adherence to instructions on the keeping of records, and checking every item of information in the records before appending signatures by school heads.
This finding is in agreement with that of Ogbonnaya (1994) who states that school senior lecturers and lecturers should embraces ideal administrative practices that could ensure effective and efficient school record keeping management in the school system. He added that such ideal practices include; delegation of work to staff, recording facts as they occurred, keeping of accurate records, monitoring of lecturer adherence to instructions regarding record keeping management, among others.
Problems Associated with keeping of School Records
With reference to research question three, which sought to find out the problems associated with keeping the school records, the respondents agreed that the problems associated with keeping of school records include; untimely supply of records to school management, lack of thorough supervision by senior lecturers, lack of fund, inadequate knowledge of records keepers, corruption of data, lack of zeal on the part of lecturers regarding keeping of school records, among others.
In the light of the above findings, it is open that there are so many problems associated with keeping the school records. This verification is in line with that of Uwazurike (1991), who opined that, untimely supply of records, lack of thorough supervision and funds, inadequate knowledge of record keeping, incessant alteration of records and role conflict among school senior lecturers among others are the chief problems recorded to have associated with records keeping in school system.
Strategies for Improving the Management of School Records
Looking at the research question four, which discusses the strategies for improving school records management in universities, the respondents (senior lecturers and lecturers) agreed that the strategies for improving school record management in universities are; giving priority to the supply of necessary school records to schools, funds made for school records management should be retired accordingly, managers of school records should be given opportunity for professional course through in-service training, school heads should ensure that records are supplied on time, and should not be influenced by political consideration. They are also of the opinion that every school head should have a “Data Board” containing summary of data on both staff, students and school activities. The fruitfulness of these findings cannot be overemphasized. This is because, a great number of school mismanagement and poor academic performance have been solved through the improvement on school data and record keeping management in the school system. This is in agreement with that of Idoko (2005), who maintains that school record management will continue to suffer neglect and misappropriation unless school administrators employ desirable strategies for improving on school records management. He added that these strategies could be; placing high priority on the supply of necessary school records to schools, funds ear-marked for records management should be retired accordingly, opportunity should be given to school administrators for professional training course in the area of records keeping management and timely supply of school records, among others.
From the findings from this study and observation of the researcher, the following conclusions can be drawn;
- Accurate records keeping in the school is very important and as such have great influence on the management and administrative performance of the senior lecturers and lecturers.
- The senior lecturers who adhere to acceptable and ideal administrative practices in keeping of school records stand chances of improved standard of school records management in the school system.
- Effective school records management is very vital in general school management. In other words, senior lecturers and lecturers, must of necessity, ensure accurate school records in the pursuit and accomplishment of school goals and objectives.
- Where senior lecturers fail to employ thorough supervision, achievement of good school records management will always be at crossroads. Also lack of zeal and interest on the part of lecturers to keep records in school system dwindle and prevent smooth running of school event.
- Many of the misunderstanding between schools and school boards/ministries or school heads and lecturers are not unconnected with the non-adherence of genuine and accurate school records keeping management.
Based on the findings, observations and conclusions of this study, the researcher arrived at the following recommendations;
- Senior lecturers should be exposed to the following school records which were found to be currently kept in universities; admission and withdrawal register, log book, attendance register, school time table, diary of work, visitors book, exam record book, time movement book, a copy of National policy on Education and lesson note/plan. This should be done through conferences, workshops, supervisions, among others.
- Senior lecturers should specifically employ the following administrative practices that characterized the keeping of school records; senior lecturers delegate the keeping of day-today school records to lecturers, record events as they occur in the appropriate record booklet, keep accurate custody of record materials and books in their offices, monitor lecturers adherence to instructions on the keeping of records, check every item of information in the records before appending signatures by senior lecturers.
- In order to solve problems associated with the keeping of school records, the following ideal strategies for improving on school records management should be employed. Supply of necessary school records to schools should be given the priority it deserves, funds ear-marked for school records management should be kept for its use, managers of school records should be given chance for professional course through in-service training, school heads should ensure that records are supplied on time, record management should not be influenced by political consideration and every school head should have a “Data Board” containing summary of data on both staff, students and school activities.
Limitations of the Study
The study had one major limitation. Although, the study accomplished the purpose for which it set out to achieve, it could not obtained the view of some key respondents (e.g. the students) which could have made the result more valid and reliable. Limiting respondents to only senior lecturers and lecturers was therefore restrictive.
Suggestions for Further Studies
Based on the findings of this study, the researcher suggests that further research work should be carried out in some other areas relating to this study. Such areas are indicated below;
- Constraints to effective school record keeping management.
- Effects of poor record keeping on secondary school management.
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