Okebukola develops homegrown techniques to teach science subjects

A Professor of science education and former executive secretary of National Universities Commission (NUC), Peter Okebukola, has developed an indigenous mechanism factoring African cultural contexts and humour to teach and learn science subjects in secondary schools.

He called the innovation, which he said it took him and his team 15 years to develop, “Culturo-Techno-Contextual Approach (CTCA),” and it  covers three segments- culture, technology and context.

According to him, the concept is homegrown, different from those by the whites and its usage will not only significantly enhance teaching and learning of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects in Nigeria and by extension Africa, but will also impact meaningfully the education sector and the economy as a whole.

“The research work is simple, flexible and adaptable to different cultural contexts as relating to immediate environment of students anywhere around the country and elsewhere in Africa. We have also implemented it first in the Lagos State University Ojo and then in some Lagos schools,” he noted.

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“And we had equally showcased it at the international conferences including a World Bank forum, through which it earned LASU a dedicated centre known as Africa Centre of Excellence for Innovative and Transformative STEM Education (ACEITSE).

Explaining in details the innovation to Tribune Online in an exclusive chat, Professor Okebukola, who is a fellow and past president of Science Teachers Association of Nigeria, said the idea is for the science teachers to explore cultural contexts and humour as related to indigenous environment to deliver subject contents as in the curriculum using technological devices such as cell phones to students.

“And the approach has been very impactful in the subjects and topics many students perceived to be difficult to understand,” he stressed

He said what makes the approach different from all others before is that it is homegrown, factoring the peculiarity of African cultural environment to teach and learn sciences.

The importance of STEM education to economic growth and development, he pointed out, is enormous to any economy and therefore Nigeria cannot afford to lag behind.

He said the long term plan for the approach is to be adopted and domesticated globally by 2030.

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