THE FUNCTIONS AND INFLUENCES OF THE SCHOOL VALUES AMONG UNDERGRADUATES IN THE UNIVERSITY OF IBADAN
1.1 Background to The Study
According to Tylor (1871), culture is that complex whole which includes knowledge,belief, art, morals, law, custom, and any othercapabilities and habits acquired by man as amember of society.As a defining aspect of what it means to behuman, culture is a central concept inanthropology, encompassing the range ofphenomena that are transmitted through sociallearning in human societies. The word is used in ageneral sense as the evolved ability to categorizeand represent experiences with symbols and to actimaginatively and creatively. Some aspects of human behavior,such as language, social practices such askinship, gender and marriage, expressive formssuch as music, dance, ritual, religion, andtechnologies such as cooking, shelter, and clothing aresaid to be cultural universals, found in all humansocieties.
The concept material culture covers thephysical expressions of culture, such astechnology, architecture and art, whereas theimmaterial aspects of culture such as principles ofsocial organization (including, practices of politicalorganization and social institutions), mythology,philosophy, literature (both written and oral), andscience make up the intangible cultural heritage ofa society.
Culture of peace is subsumed under Peace Education. Culture of peace arose at the end of the Cold War. For the first time, the objective for which the United Nations was founded, the abolition of war had become feasible. The United Nations Organization for Education, Science and Culture, UNESCO, had engaged in activities to promote a culture of peace from its beginnings, when it was founded in the Second World War to construct the defences of peace in the minds of men and women.
Culture of peace is a natural phenomenon necessary for all, and very important among undergraduates in the university. A university is an educational institution designed for interaction, examination, or both of the students in many branches of advanced learning, conferring degrees in various faculties, and often embodying colleges and similar institutions.
Peace and conflict today was formulated by the International Congress of Peace in the Minds of Men that was held in Africa (Yamoussoukro, Cote d’Ivoire, 1989).in its final declaration, the Congress recommended UNESCO to “help construct a new vision of peace by developing a peace culture based on the universal values of respect for life, liberty, justice, solidarity, tolerance, human rights and equality between men and women. The term “ peace culture” was inspired by the 1986 educational initiative Culturadepaz in Peru and by the Seville statement on violence, elaborated in 1986 by scientists from around the world which stated scientifically and categorically that war is not determined by gene, violent brains, human nature or instincts, but was rather a social invention. Therefore, “the same species that invented war is capable of inventing peace.” Thus, the culture of peace is an integral approach to preventing violence and violent conflicts, and an alternative to the culture of war and violence based on education for peace, the promotion of sustainable economic and social development, respect for human rights, equality between women and men, democratic participation, tolerance, the free flow of information and disarmament.
Examining school values, School values are standards. They are roadmaps. They are directions. However, we need to understand the concept of value. According to Wikipedia (2014), values can be defined as “…broad preference concerning appropriate courses of action or outcome” values can be seen in two lights. Some values are physiologically directed and are usually considered to be objective.
This is because they vary across individuals and Cultures and in many ways are linked with belief and belief systems. Thus, some values are considered general, while others can be culture or belief-determined.
As a matter of fact, school values have their root in values. Therefore, school values may be said to be standards set by a school system which governs and controls the system’s operational plans and activities such that these activities are directed towards the mission and vision of the school. As said about values, school values may be culture, belief or intention-based. Therefore, what may be considered as value in one setting may be termed otherwise in another setting and vice-versa.
Thus, how school values can be a determinant of the culture of peace in the University of Ibadan among undergraduates in relation to the mission statements to: “be a world-class institution for academic excellence geared towards meeting societal needs, produce graduates who are worthy in character and sound judgment, contribute to the transformation of society through creativity and innovation,”will be further explored.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The study centers on the school values among university undergraduates of the University of Ibadan to promote the culture of peace. The culture of peace, if devoid among undergraduates can lead to unacceptable behaviour that can impede the mission and vision of the university. Thus, the school values such as: respect for rules and regulation; civil virtue; sportsmanship; and team spirit/ team building among university undergraduates are what this study wants to know if they really guide the conduct of undergraduates to imbibe the culture of peace. Hence, the need for the need for this study seeks to find out how school values have affected the culture of peace among undergraduates in the University of Ibadan.
The university uses many devices to bring about peace in its milieu. One of the ways implored to make peace reign in the school is through the values of the school as said. Nevertheless, with much effort in promoting the culture of peace among undergraduates, there are still cases of conflicts, gambling, prostitution, pornography, vandalism, larceny, examination malpractices, assault and other social vices.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The purpose of the study is to identify the functions and influences of the school values among undergraduates in the University of Ibadan that are beneficial to the growth of peace and resolving conflicts. This work is relevant to study what peace and settling conflicts are all about and how school values contribute therein. These school values play significant roles in advancing peace within and beyond the institution. The work focuses on school values and its significances in peace building; and engages in a case study of students’ response to conflicts and how they demonstrate or exhibit the culture of peace.
1.4Objectives of the Study
The broad objective of the study is to determine the extent to which school values influence the culture of peace among undergraduates in the University of Ibadan.
Specific objectives of the study are to:
1 examine the undergraduates general disposition to the culture of peace
2 determine the extent to which school values influence the culture of peace among the undergraduates in the University of Ibadan.
3 to investigate the students’ attitudes towards the inclusion of peace education as a general course in the university.
1.5 Research Questions
In order to achieve the stated objectives, the following research questions are raised:
1 what is the general disposition of university undergraduates to the Culture of Peace in the University of Ibadan?
2 to what extent do the school values influence the Culture of Peace among university undergraduates in the University of Ibadan?
3 what are the students’ attitudes towards the inclusion of peace education as a general course in the university?
1.6 Significance of the Study
The study tends to look into the values (civic virtue, team spirit/building, respect for rules and regulations, and sportsmanship) that are considered in the University of Ibadan which contribute to or foster the culture of peace among the university undergraduates. Also, itlooks into the cultural beliefs of different students and how the school values have shaped their individual values to fit into the school’s system.
1.7 Scope of the Study
The research work is limited to the University of Ibadan, Oyo State. It will cover only the undergraduates in the selected school. This implies that to get significant evidences about students’ opinion on peace as a concept, there is need for a field work in such a tertiary institution.
This study focuses on the school values as a determinant of the culture of peace among university undergraduates in the University of Ibadan. The research is to be carried out among the students, both male and female within the University of Ibadan.
1.9 Operational Definition of Terms
Culture is the set of attitudes, values, beliefs, and behaviours shared by a group of people, but different for each individual communicated from one generation to the next. It is a fuzzy set of basic assumptions and values, orientations to life, beliefs, policies, procedures, and behavioural conventions that are shared by a group of people, and that influence (but do not determine) each member’s behavior and his/her interpretations of the ‘meaning’ of other people’s behavior.
Peace is a term commonly used to describe a state of being calm and quiet, a state of tranquility, free from argument, conflict, violence and disturbances. It is an avenue permeated with attitudes that allow people of all ages and all levels to co-habit in harmony.
A university or college student who is studying for his or her first degree: a student at the university who has not yet received a bachelor’s-level degree. Students studying for their first degree are undergraduates in the University of Ibadan. In view of this study, an undergraduate is a student who is studying for his or her first degree (usually entitled Bachelor of Arts [BA] or Bachelor of Science [BSc]).
Culture of Peace
According to the 1998 UN resolution, the Culture of Peace is an integral approach to preventing violence and violent conflicts, and an alternative to the culture of war and violence based on education for peace, the promotion of sustainable economic and social development, respect for human rights, equality between women and men, democratic participation, tolerance, the free flow of information and disarmament.
Values can be defined as "broad preference concerning appropriate courses of action or outcome.”
A school is an institution designed for the teaching of students, under the directions of facilitators. In relation to this study, school means university and that is the University of Ibadan.
School values may be said to be standards set by a school system which governs and controls the system’s operational plans and activities such that these activities are directed towards the mission and vision of the school. For the purpose of the study, examples of school values are: (a) respect for rules and regulation (b) civil virtues (c) sportsmanship (d) team spirit/team building.