IMPACT OF CHRISTIAN RELIGIOUS STUDIES IN HIGHER INSTITUTIONS OF LEARNING: CASE STUDY OF KWALI AREA COUNCIL
1.1 Background to the Study
Recently over the world, argument have been seeping into mainstream media for the removal of Christian religious studies in schools even where majority of residents are apparently Christian. With religious questionings and growing number of people claiming atheism coupled with the manifestations of religious extremism, a lot of people including legislators are beginning to consider the removal of Christian religious studies from primary and secondary schools curriculum. In some freer countries like the united states, this has gone past the stage of arguments, counterarguments and considerations. Legislatures have passed bills for the removal of the subject and it’s implementation has taken place so that teachers who suggest the subject in the courses of their lessons stand the chances of losing their jobs.
In Nigeria, especially at a time when religious extremism and economic repression the argument usually bother along the lines of what could religious studies favour the child with in such a time. And to allocate more resources to the sciences, Christian religious studies always comes off lowest and consequently is usually the one to the scrapped off the budge.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
As a follow up to the background provided above, Christian religious studies, when it isn’t seen as one of the remote causes of religious extremism and intolerance, is seen as a very unserious subject especially at primary and secondary schools and sometimes at tertiary levels; one whose advocacy is only informed by religious sentiment and does not contribute to the overall development of the child through adulthood.
However, such an argument, both of the negative influence of the subject and that of its irrelevance are not founded on statistics and long thorough research. It is this presumptuous undertone which has informed the attitude of millenial and their wards against Christian religious studies that is the problem that the present research work aims at treating.
1.3 Research Questions
1.3.1 How relevant is the study of the Christian religion.
1.3.2 How much does it influence students at higher institution of learning.
1.3.3 What percentage of the positive impact of Christian religious studies in higher institution of learning outweighs that of it’s shortcomings.
1.4 Objectives of the Study
This research hopes to logically look at the impact of Christian religious studies in the higher institute of learning. This is to be achieved by identifying and discussing at length the various impacts of the subject. As mentioned earlier, the almost negative stance of legislators, parents and some teachers against the subject are informed by an unresearched understanding that the subject can in some ways instigate extremist tendencies in the children at higher institute levels. This research will achieve a total reorientation by pursuing the following objectives:
1.4.1 to do a statistical research on the impact of Christian religious studies in tertiary institutions.
1.4.2 Discuss these various impacts in full along with all the sociocultural factors that bring them into being.
1.4.3 Reconcile the uninformed assumptions about the subject in the educational curriculum.
1.5 Significance of the Study
This study sheds a clear light on the immediate and remote impacts of Christian religious studies in the higher institutions of learning in Kwali arear council. It also gives insights on how these impacts can actually help in shaping the minds of the students to he more tolerant of other people’s religions. As Dr Gareth Byrne posits:
The current critique of denominational education, and of denominational religious education in particular, risks undermining the place of this core subject in all schools, just at a moment when deeper reflection on religion, belief, spirituality and ethics could contribute enormously to the emergence of a society that seeks to embrace difference and is comfortable to celebrate the presence of a variety of religious and other belief systems.(The Irish Times)
1.6 Research Hypothesis
This research work is born on the assumption that the teaching of Christian religious studies is impactful on students of higher institutes of learning and that these impacts are more or less positive ones.
1.7 Scope of the Study
This research, studying the impacts of Christian religious studies in higher institute of learning, focuses only on the this impact as manifested in Kwali area council. From the results of this research one can do a reading of other areas with similar topography as the council.
The study will discuss the various impacts in details but more emphasis on the thrown on the most immediate impacts especially the ones peculiar to the area council.
For the above reason, the chapter distribution will be tailored to shine better light on and divide the fourth chapter into two sections: the positive impacts and the negative ones.
1.8 Limitations of the Study
The limitations of this work borders between spatial factors to accommodate the bulk of impacts of the issue and time factors that could not allow for an extensive engagement of the research object.
1.9 Definition of Terms
Christian Religious Studies
This is a subject in the Nigerian primary and secondary schools curricula which aims at teaching children morals based on the Christian Bible.