A Survey of Learning Needs of Street Vendors in Nigeria: An Appraisal of Learning Opportunities for Sustainable Livelihood

A Survey of Learning Needs of Street Vendors in Nigeria: An Appraisal of Learning Opportunities for Sustainable Livelihood

Comfort Chiegenashi Zuofa (Niger Delta University, Nigeria) and Christian Olori (University of Nigeria – Nsukka, Nigeria)
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-8134-5.ch009

Abstract

This chapter investigated the learning needs and learning opportunities of street vendors for sustainable livelihood in Nigeria. Two research questions and one null hypothesis were developed to guide the study. The study adopted a correlational survey research design. The population for the study was 6,401 street vendors. The sample size was 335. Instrument for data collection was a questionnaire titled “Learning Needs and Opportunities for Sustainable Livelihood of Street Vendors” (LNOSLSV). It was face validated by three validates. An overall reliability coefficient value of .85 was obtained using Cronbach Alpha Statistical Tool. Data collected were analyzed using the mean to answer the research questions, while the multiple regression was used to test the null hypothesis at .05 level of significance. Findings among others revealed a variety of learning needs. It was recommended that ICT facilities be strategically positioned to display the procedures for the acquisition of various skills by street vendors.
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Introduction

The survival of every society is hinged on continuous learning. The individual engages in this learning activity from the cradle to the grave. This is the idea surrounding lifelong learning. A learning that runs from the acquisition of basic literacy skills to the application of personal and societal problem-solving skills. This learning further presupposes that, in a constantly changing society characterized by influx of technological innovations, lifelong learning becomes a veritable tool that can help the individual to effectively adopt and adapt to the changes within his social milieu. More still, the flexibility of this type of learning makes it possible to incorporate different modes of delivery into the learning process. These modes are categorized as formal, informal and non-formal forms of education.

The formal education is characterized by regulations promulgated by the government while ensuring quality and uniformity within a specific period in a controlled environment. The informal is accidental. Implying that knowledge or skills could consciously or unconsciously be acquired. This, in most cases is made possible through the use of electronic media. The non-formal education on the other hand, is the acquisition of knowledge outside the regimented formal system. This education, though planned, is flexible with immediate needs of learners in focus. This form of education is premised on the fact that there are several things to learn outside the formal system which the learners were not exposed to. This inhibition may not be unconnected with the duration that is allotted to a given program or course of study or topic as the case may be.

Additionally, it could be said that the philosophy underpinning the wide range of learning opportunities provided by non-formal education is centered on the dynamism of society and that every learner, through the acquisition of relevant skills, strives to make meaningful contributions to society. Thus, the non-formal education concept has further led to the establishment of many programs designed to adequately equip the learner with requisite skills needed to make optimal contribution society. Some of these programs include but are not limited to, literacy education, entrepreneurship education, vocational education, environmental education and continuing education. The learning provided by these programs offer opportunities for the development of knowledge, ideas, skills and attitudes needed to solve individual and societal problems. Thus, learning according to Kolberg (2004) is a process whereby knowledge is created by the transformation of experiences. These experiences are geared toward personal development of the individual through life. Nzeneri (2008) explains that the experiences individuals acquire during the learning process enable them to liberate themselves from constraints, ignorance, dependency and exploitation. This view suggests that the individual continues to expend energy to acquire new skills, ideas, knowledge and experiences through formal, informal and non-formal education which enable him survive and become a productive member within the context of societal development.

The acquisition of the above knowledge through formal, informal or non-formal educational process underscores the existence of varying learning needs for sustainability. Needs basically comprise essential learning essentials such as literacy, oral expression, numeracy and problem-solving skills. Through literacy, the learner who in this context is the street vendor is exposed to a good knowledge of the immediate environment within which he/she is expected to function in the society. With regard to oral expression, the learner by nature requires the interaction of people in the society. Understanding the skills of relating with the environment will trigger both individual participation in effective entrepreneurial learning and societal development. Numeracy and problem-solving needs encapsulate acquisition of computing or recording skills and the ability to analyze situations.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Learning Needs: These are the drives or quest that spur an individual to undertake training for the achievement of the aim.

Street Vendors: These are individuals involved in mobile business activities mostly carried out in urban settlements.

Lifelong Learning: This is a process of acquiring knowledge from the cradle to the grave.

Learning Opportunities: These are avenues created for the acquisition of new skills and knowledge for optimal performance in the world of work.

Skills: These are proficiencies acquired by an individual in a given area of endeavors.

Needs: These are gaps that can be noticed between situations that exist and situations that ought to exist.

Sustainable Livelihood: It is the process by which the source of living of an individual is secured for now and future use.

Livelihood: These are resources that are designed to sustain a person’s life and existence.

Learning: This is conceived as the scientific process of acquiring new knowledge by an individual. This knowledge could be acquired through formal, informal, and/or non-formal modes of education.

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