Student expectations of faculty in a Nigerian LIS School.

Author:Adomi, Esharenana E.
Position:Department of Library and Information Science, Delta State University


Students' views on all aspects of their higher education experiences are essential to the effective monitoring of quality in universities (Hill, Lomas and MacGregor, 2003). In the USA, student evaluation of teaching is part of the faculty member's performance evaluation (Emery, Kramer and Tian, 2003). This is also true of European countries (Curtis, 2002).

In Nigeria, student evaluation of teaching has not yet been introduced in universities. Criteria for assessing academics for promotion in most Nigerian universities include qualifications, teaching, current research, publications, and service to university/country (Mordi, 2002). The reward system for academics in Nigeria, however, is largely based on research excellence (Adomi and Mordi, 2003).

Though students in developed countries are used to participating in teaching evaluation, a search of the literature did not reveal students' expectations of library and information science (LIS) faculty. There is some literature on the traits lecturers are expected to exhibit. Murray, et al. (1996) posit that university teachers are expected to possess content competence; pedagogical competence; the ability to deal with sensitive topics in an open, honest, and respectful way; the ability to contribute to the intellectual development of the student; the ability to treat students' grades, other academic records, and private communications with strict confidentiality; assessment of students that is valid, open, fair, and congruent with the course; and, respect for the institution. These are ethical principles, which are conceptualized as general guidelines, ideals, or expectations that need to be taken into account along with other relevant conditions and circumstances, in the design and analysis of university-college teaching.

Priestly and Kerpneck (1977) assert that the university teacher needs broad knowledge and understanding of the subject as well as a deep knowledge and understanding of at least one substantial area of it. Since their primary business (and that of the university) is teaching, they must know a good deal about what they are teaching and a good deal about how to teach it. Hill, Lomas, and MacGregor (2003) in their investigation of what students in a number of disciplines perceive as quality education found that students appreciated lecturers who knew their subject, were well organized, and were interesting to talk to. They appreciated lecturers who provided feedback to students during the session and in assignments, and also liked teachers who were easy to be with and helped them to learn.

IFLA (2001) maintains that the academic (teaching) staff of LIS education programmes should be sufficient to accomplish programme objectives; the full-time faculty member qualifications should include research-based competence in the designated areas, technological proficiency, effectiveness in teaching, a sustained record of scholarship, and active participation in...

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