Perception Of Student On Sexual Harassment In Higher Institution

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Perception Of Student On Sexual Harassment In Higher Institution


Sexual harassment of students in school, mostly the females had negatively affected a woman’s psychological and physical well-being. The purpose of this study is to determine the perception of students about sexual harassment in higher institution in Enugu State College of Education (Technical) Enugu. The purpose of this study also investigate on the problem of pornographic movies and how to eradicate them, organizing seminars and workshops, orienting and educating the students more on sexual education. One hundred research questionnaire were distributed to the respondents or students in the school hostels.

Three research questions each one focusing on the three main problems of the study showed that indecent dressing of mostly female students, greediness, illiteracy, intimidation, environment and peer groups constitute the major causes of sexual harassment of students in school. The study was concluded with some recommendations which includes that seminars, workshops and synopsis should be organized for students in both lower and higher institution of learning; production of pornographic films should be eradicated by the government, code of dressing should be checkmated mostly by female students who go about half-naked in the name of fashion; provision of job opportunities by the government to reduce idleness. The researchers believes that if all these are put in place, it will help curb sexual harassment of students in higher institution.

Chapter One


1.1 Background of the Study

Iheke (2010) defines sexual harassment as any unwelcome conduct, comment gesture or contact of sexual nature. Sexual harassment, negatively affects a woman’s psychological and physical well-being and or lead to negative job or academic environment-related consequences for her. In the educational environment, the phenomena which normally affect girls and women more than boys and men, has a potential to erode the future of many female students who are mostly the victim but do not have access to any counseling or channels for redress.

Prof. Iheke, says that sexual harassment in universities was not limited to Africa. “It is a global issue” the abuse of power. Iheke (2010) further said the interview showed that sexual harassment had become normalized”, within some universities. Male student assumption about “prostitution” among their female peers” diminished women achievements “she said recent findings by the United Nations suggest that sexual exploitation and abuse within schools is widespread.

Some lecturers and students, however, think otherwise and a family life counselor and lecturer Ejli (2009) said his encounter with female students indicate widespread harassment from male lecturer and points out that some students who are faced with academic challenges sometimes approached lecturers for such favors. Some students who were interviewed on radio station from other institution also confirmed that sexual harassment of female students by male lectures was real.

As a way of helping to curb the issues, Iheke explains why her outfit undertook seminars and programmes on the various campuses to educate female students on their gender and reproductive right. Unsafe abortion among others, to ascertain the certaininty of the claims, the researchers therefore seek to find out the perception of students of ESCET on sexual harassment.

1.2 Statement of Problem:

Sexual harassment has become a persuasive issue affecting higher institutions in the country. Many issues affecting higher institutions in the country. Many students who are victims of this harassment were not bold enough to report to the student authorities for fear of being victimized in their examination by the lecturer and therefore most of them suffer in silence.

Many female students have been molested and it has become a cankerworm eating up in our tertiary institutions. Sexual harassment has become “normalized” within some many institutions. Male students’ assumption about “prostitution” among their female peers “diminished women’s achievements”.

Rapists hovers everywhere looking for their prey, some pretends going to night class in the name of reading but that is not the true definition of their actions.

Female identity had been destiny, they added and explain that “if female fail” this is seen as evidence of their lack of academic abilities and preparedness of higher education. It has been observed that failure to accept sexual advances leads to good grades. These attitudes have negative influence in education. The perceptions of students are hereby sought.

1.3 Objective of the Study

The purpose of this research work includes the following: Generally the researcher seeks to:

  1. To identify the causes of sexual harassment of students in higher institution in ESCET.
  2. To identify the danger of sexual harassment in higher institution in Enugu State College of Education Technical.
  3. To identify the strategies in which government have employ to curb sexual harassment of students in higher institution.

1.4 Research Hypotheses

  1. H0: Sexual harassment does not psychological effect on the female students in high institutions.
    H1: Sexual harassment has psychological effects on the female students in high institutions.
  2. H20: Sexual harassment is not perceived as violation of human rights by students of high institutions.
    H21: Sexual harassment is perceived as a violation of human rights by the students of high institutions.

1.5 Research Questions:

The study was guided by the following research questions:

  1. What are the causes of sexual harassment in higher institution in ESCET?
  2. What are the dangers of sexual harassment in higher institution in Enugu State College of Education (Technical)?
  3. What are the strategies in which government have employ to curb sexual harassment in higher institution in ESCET?

1.6 Significance of the Study:

The finding from this research work will enlighten both the students, lecturers and government to adopt a zero tolerance policy towards sexual harassment in Enugu State College of Education Technical (ESCET) and the entire society of large to see the need to curb sexual harassment.

Students Should always dres sence at all time that their body will be covered. They should also visit the office of male lectures at the appropriate time to avoid sexual harassment and they should know their right.

Lecturers should not allow students in their offices at old time and be straight forward in grade giving. The controlling of oneself is another thing people should adopt so that in the case of ones exposure especially female student, they will be able to hold themselves because not every thing the eye see it will taste.

Government is the key to every beginning. They are the people a that make law and enforce it to the citizens. When they make law abiding sexual harassment especially to institut6ions, and the society at large and give a sound punishment. I believe that sexual harassment will be curbed.

Finally, the result of this study will suggest ways of achieving optimum educational goals and saving our females from sexual harassment and make them to loss their pride as a woman.

1.7 Scope of the Study

The scope of this study is to examine, the perception of sexual harassment of students in higher institution in Enugu College of Education (Technical) and other campuses at large.

1.8 Definition of Terms

i. Perception:

The ability to perceive, or the act of perceiving.

ii. Humiliation:

Case to feel ashamed or stupid

iii. Curb:

A check or restraint

iv. Rape:

(of a man) force someone to have sex with him against their will.

v. Molest:

Prefer or harass or sexual assault.

vi. Sexual harassment:

This is an unwelcome conduct, comment gesture or contact of sexual nature, whether or a one time basis or a series of incidents that might cause offence. Limitation, awareness or embarrassment, or that might reasonably be conceived as a condition of sexual nature.

1.9 Organization of the Study

The study is divided into five chapters. Chapter one deals with the study’s introduction and gives a background to the study. Chapter two reviews related and relevant literature. The chapter three gives the research methodology while the chapter four gives the study’s analysis and interpretation of data. The study concludes with chapter five which deals on the summary, conclusion and recommendation.

Chapter Five

Summary Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Introduction

It is important to ascertain that the objective of this study was to ascertain the perception of students on sexual harassment in higher institutions.

In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing the problem of sexual harassment in Nigeria.

5.2 Summary

The purpose of the present research study was to inform on the perception of sexual harassment among students in high institutions. The motivation for the study was based on the shortage of research investigating sexual harassment prevalence rates at institutions of higher learning in Nigeria. The researcher is of the view that studies such as the present one advanced our understanding of sexual harassment as a phenomenon which plagues our society and impacts negatively on the lives of a great number of people. The main aims of the present study were to determine the prevalence of blatant and subtle sexual harassment. In addition to this, the researcher set out to determine the degree of tolerance of subtle sexual harassment among participants, the prevalence of subtle sexual harassment within Enugu college of Education(Technical). Furthermore, the effects of sexual harassment on the victim, be it social, emotional and/or academic, was also ascertained. In addition to this, the relationship between the perception, tolerance and prevalence of sexual harassment among participants in the study, was investigated. Also, this study attempted to outline the different definitions of sexual harassment. An exposition of different behavioural types that reside under the umbrella name of sexual harassment, for example blatant types such as rape, attempted rape and stalking as well as a variety of subtle sexual harassment types were provided. Numerous theoretical perspectives were employed to explain the origins of sexual harassment and the effects of such harassment on victims. Attention was also paid to the factors that influence, sustain and foster the entrenchment and perpetration of sexual harassment in society. In the literature review an overview was given of the categories and types of sexual harassment. A review of the extent of sexual harassment on campuses was provided as well. In addition the focus fell on previous research on sexual harassment, university residences as focal points of sexual harassment, the effects of sexual harassment, responses to sexual harassment, effects of sexual harassment, risk factors for sexual harassment, perceptions of sexual harassment, perpetrators of sexual harassment, sex differences regarding the perpetrators of sexual harassment, sex differences in victims of sexual harassment, familiarity of perpetrators men as targets of sexual harassment, the phenomenon of same-sex sexual harassment as well as the deficiencies in previous research on sexual harassment.

5.3 Conclusion

Research in many countries testifies to a range of sexual harassment practices found within academic settings. The existence of sexual harassment undermines the educational process of any institution and it remains a university’s responsibility to provide a safe environment in order that students might reach their full potential. Sexual harassment prevents this from happening. Being institutions of higher learning, universities are seen as bearing a special responsibility to be exemplary and to act as models for other institutions. The phenomenon of sexual harassment has wide and serious consequences for victims and the institutions in which it occurs. Crocker (1983) argues that a definition of sexual harassment, which includes a wide range of behaviour, has the following implications for higher institutions and academic community:

  1. Authorities in high institutions need to take cognizance of the broad range of behaviour for which they have to take responsibility,
  2. Students must be made aware of the variety of behaviors, which are seen as unacceptable,
  3. Official recognition should be given to the fact that sexual harassment can vary from verbal comments to rape and that such practices have serious and detrimental implications not only for the victims but also for the academic community.

5.4 Recommendation

Authorities of high institutions should develop a policy to address sexual harassment. This policy should give a clear definition on Sexual Harassment so that lecturers, teaching staff and non-academic staffs know how to handle Sexual Harassment cases. The system of complaint-handling should serve to safeguard the basic rights of tutors and students, as well as their gender equity and equality. In operation, the system should uphold the principles of fairness, transparency and protection of privacy, and the authority to discipline. With reference to the high institutions, mechanisms should be established in order to handle complaint cases. Concurrently, all students should understand clearly about the complaint procedures (e.g., relevant information uploaded on the school website). Moreover, appropriate channels should be provided for students who can seek help in confidence. Once the policy is set, authorities should enforce the policy, with proper mechanism to monitor the implementation and review the policy from time to time, in order to ensure the efficacies of its implementation.

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