International Journal of
Vocational and Technical Education

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Voc. Tech. Educ.
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJVTE
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 98

Full Length Research Paper

Enhancing students’ engagement in vocational agri-science and after-school careers in agricultural business: A case study of Uganda

Okiror John James*
  • Okiror John James*
  • Department of Extension and Innovation Studies, Makerere University, Kampala.
  • Google Scholar
Geoff Hayward
  • Geoff Hayward
  • Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge, UK.
  • Google Scholar
Mark Winterbottom
  • Mark Winterbottom
  • Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge, UK.
  • Google Scholar


  •  Received: 18 February 2017
  •  Accepted: 20 March 2017
  •  Published: 30 April 2017

Abstract

There is urgent need to stem the many failed attempts to improve agricultural education delivery in Africa in a context of growing youth unemployment and food insecurity. Studies show that teachers are ill prepared to engage learners practically, and motivate them towards agricultural careers. Constructively, aligned teaching that matches learning outcomes, teaching methods and assessments has gained currency in pedagogical change. This study examines the pedagogical methods used for secondary school agriculture in Uganda. Data were collected in a cross-sectional survey from 80 agriculture teachers and 57 administrators from 60 secondary schools, randomly drawn from 25 districts in Uganda, and analyzed with descriptive statistics. Results show that the teaching and learning approaches are teacher-centered and examination oriented. The current focus on national examinations is unable to engage learners in a meaningful way.  We recommend system-wide improvements in the teaching based on clear statements of intended learning outcomes which also should extend beyond the confines of the school to the villages where children live and work.

Key words: Agriculture teachers, secondary schools, teaching methods, Uganda.