Zimbabwe Journal of Educational Research 2022-01-26T11:53:49+00:00 Prof. Fred Zindi Open Journal Systems <p>The <strong><em>Zimbabwe Journal of Educational Research</em></strong> (<strong><em>ZJER</em></strong><strong>)</strong> is an international refereed journal that is published by the University of Zimbabwe’s Human Resources Research Centre (HRRC) under the Faculty of Education. The journal is available in print and online three times a year. <strong><em>ZJER</em></strong> is hosted online by <strong>African Journals OnLine</strong> (<strong>AJOL</strong>) at The main thrust of <strong><em>ZJER</em></strong><strong> </strong>is to facilitate the publication of educational and scholarly research articles written by academics throughout the world. The HRRC has a team of Editors, supported by the Editorial Board and Editorial Advisory Board, which works to maintain and improve the quality of our publications.</p> An Investigation of University Graduates Employability: A Case of Mechanical Engineering Students from Two Tertiary Institutions in Zimbabwe 2022-01-26T11:53:49+00:00 Moses Chundu Rumbidzai Ndavambi Elizabeth Mamukwa <p>The study examines the employability of mechanical engineering students from tertiary institutions in Zimbabwe. Mixed method research methodologies were used with primary data collected using semi-structured interviews and questionnaires from members of Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI), mechanical engineering lecturers and graduates from University of Zimbabwe and Harare Institute of Technology. The study found practical exposure regarding industrial machines, communication skills, teamwork, language skills, problem solving skills, use of equipment and information technology to be key skills and aptitudes that could enhance employability of mechanical engineering graduates. The study explored the curriculum content of both institutions and concludes that the curriculum design and content is sufficient for ensuring the employability of mechanical engineering graduates although there is limited exposure to industrial work. The results show that the current curriculum content enables the employability of mechanical engineering graduates although employers from CZI, to a lesser extent, had a feeling that the graduates are less suited and prepared for the real world of work. However, the lectures from institutions under study felt their curricula were modified to suit the needs of the employers. Recommendations from the study include further modifying the mechanical engineering curriculum to suit the employers’ needs in consultation with employer organisations like CZI. The duration for internship programme could be made mandatory with the duration increased from a year to two years in order to increase practical exposure.</p> Copyright (c) 0 The Status of South African Sign Language in South African Universities 2022-01-23T11:53:13+00:00 Eventhough Ndlovu <p>This article examines the status of South African Sign Language (SASL) in South African universities. It provides an appraisal of the policy documents which regulate language use in South African universities in order to examine the extent to which the policy documents guarantee the educational linguistic human rights of deaf and hard of hearing students. In 2002 the South African Language Policy for Higher Education made it mandatory for all higher education institutions to develop their own language policies in line with the South African Language Policy for Higher Education. All higher education institutions were expected to submit their language policies to the parent ministry by 31 March 2003. The South African Language Policy for Higher Education and the National Plan for Higher Education emphasise the need for equity and redress in terms of access to, and success in higher education programmes. They stress the need for language policies of South African universities to be responsive to the needs of the disabled by developing SASL competencies and capacity. Against this background, this article examines the extent to which South African universities have complied with these requirements and the extent to which their language policies guarantee the educational linguistic human rights of deaf and hard of hearing students. Findings of this study show that although the majority of the universities have complied in terms on enacting language policies, some of the policies, however, do not convincingly guarantee the educational linguistic human rights of deaf and hard of hearing students, while others are completely silent on this right.</p> Copyright (c) 0 Learner-centred Approaches to Teaching and Learning: Implications for Education 5.0 in Zimbabwean Universities 2022-01-23T12:03:22+00:00 Ben John Siyakwazi Viola Machingura <p>In the history of educational approaches, the learner-centred school of thought is regarded as reflecting pragmatic philosophy. In this approach, the teacher consciously designs a curriculum and uses teaching strategies that meet the needs and interests of the learner. John Dewey, the famous American philosopher, popularised this philosophy at his laboratory school at the University of Chicago back in the 19<sup>th</sup> century, yet the theory has not found much traction in Zimbabwean state universities until the advent of Education 5.0 in 2020. In this paper, the authors revisit the concept of learner-centred education in the teaching process at university level and make a strong plea for its use as a solution to attaining Education 5.0. This paper focuses on the learner-centred concept showing its historical perspective, principles, methodology, and curriculum that point to problem solving at university level. The paper used the historical and philosophical approaches in analysing this crucial concept that has been brought back to focus by Education 5.0 in the current era.</p> Copyright (c) 0 COVID–19 Pandemic: Its Impact on Universities and Schools in Zimbabwe 2022-01-23T12:09:26+00:00 Stephen Mahere <p>The study sought to investigate the impact of COVID-19 on universities and schools in Zimbabwe. The investigation adopted qualitative research design utilising documentary research analysis. Telephone interviews and interviews conducted over WhatsApp social media platforms were the data-collection instruments. Population of the study comprised students and teachers in schools and universities. Findings revealed that COVID–19 had a significant impact on the teaching / learning of students. Universities and some schools adopted online learning during lockdowns. COVID 19-induced switch-over from face-to-face teaching to ICT-based teaching, resulted in universities and schools being exposed to alternative ways of teaching and learning. In universities, students were taught using a blended teaching mode comprising on-line and face-to-face teaching. COVID-19 created opportunities for lecturers to engage in further research. Some universities set up Task Forces that facilitated compliance with WHO COVID-19 protocols, and Ministry of Health guidelines. Schools conducted lessons on a rotational basis. Boarding schools reduced enrolments to enhance social distancing. Online learning was not accessible to all students. The switch-over gave rise to high costs of data bundles, computer hardware and software-related problems. Some students on industrial attachment failed to secure placements or had their contracts prematurely-terminated as some companies had ceased operating. In schools, some students missed out on teaching / learning. In well-resourced schools, students continued learning, reaching their teachers on-line. The study urged university leaders and school principals to embrace COVID-19 as an 'educational change' that offers opportunities to enhance innovation, and create a more positive teaching / learning environment.</p> Copyright (c) 0 A Comparative Study of Traditional Teaching Approaches and E-Learning: A Case Study of Primary Schools in Goromonzi South District of Mashonaland East Province, Zimbabwe 2022-01-23T12:20:34+00:00 Josephine Mutamba Christopher Mandizvidza <p>Goromonzi South District primary schools made attempts to implement the 2014 competence-based curriculum by embracing the use of information communication technology (ICT) within the teaching and learning practices. However, there is no clarity on the relevance and superiority of online learning over the traditional face-to-face teaching and learning methodologies. This is apparent by unchanging and low completion rates for primary learners since 2014 of 77.75% lower than the ECD completion rate of 92.29%. &nbsp;This study sought to compare traditional (face to face) versus online-learning strategies among primary schools in Goromonzi South District. Specific interest was to determine the perceptions of primary teachers towards online-learning; establish the factors influencing the online-learning adoption; and examine the factors influencing primary teachers to continue using traditional learning. It also sought to establish the constraints to the adoption and utilisation of online-learning and establish measures to overcome the e-learning adoption challenges. Two hundred and fifty self-administered questionnaires were distributed to teachers and school heads in the district using stratified sampling while five interviews were held with the same staff using purposive sampling. A response rate of 62% was recorded. Survey data were analysed using Statistical Package for Social Scientists (SPSS) version 24 while interview data were thematically analysed using manual techniques. Bar graphs, summary tables and pie charts were used to present and analyse the data. The results showed that e-learning is hindered by a number of structural problems (poor Internet, infrastructure, lack of policy framework), socio-cultural, personal and technology-related characteristics. These challenges are surmountable through clear policy interventions that define appropriate tools to use, staff development trajectory, and fusing face-to-face positive contributions into the e-learning strategies. It can be concluded that blended learning is superior over adherence to any single of the dichotomy of traditional versus e-learning. Enhancing adoption of e-learning therefore requires clear policy directions and investments in the necessary e-learning infrastructure. It may be pertinent that a comparative study be conducted to unveil such underlying differences in adoption of e-learning between developed and developing economies.</p> Copyright (c) 0 Analysis of the Determinant Factors of Entrepreneurial and Career Choice among Trainees of Nigerian Armed Forces Resettlement Centre Oshodi, Lagos Nigeria 2022-01-23T12:28:12+00:00 Mogbekeloluwa Oluyinka Fakokunde Tolutope Oluwabamiji Fakokunde <p>The post-service life of the military personnel is germane to the corporate existence and adjustment of ex-military personnel; hence, the military in Nigeria places high premium on resettling personnel through an entrepreneurship programme. The study investigated the influencing factors of entrepreneurial choice among military personnel during the resettlement training programme. It also determined the pattern of entrepreneurial and career choice currently existing among the members of the Nigerian Armed Forces on enrolment as trainees at the Nigerian Armed Forces Resettlement Centre. In addition, the study explored some of the psychological and sociological variables that usually affect or influence their choices such as educational background, rank and job specialisation. Four research hypotheses were tested at 0.05 level of significance. A sample of 200 trainees were purposively selected and participated in the study. A questionnaire titled “Trainees Entrepreneurial Choice Inventory (TECI)” was used to obtain relevant data that were analysed using descriptive statistics and t-test. Findings from the study revealed participants strongly agree with the influence of educational background, rank, place of settlement and job specialisation while in military on their entrepreneurial and trade choice. Furthermore, the result of the study showed that all four hypotheses were accepted. Among the recommendations based on the findings was that training curriculum in the various military training institutions should be enhanced to incorporate component skills on vocational and entrepreneurial education. In addition, group counselling and orientation service should be organised for trainees prior to their choice of entrepreneurship.</p> Copyright (c) 0 The Need for Occupational Therapy (OT) Services in Zimbabwean Urban Mainstream Schools in the Context of Inclusive Education: A Cross Sectional Descriptive Pilot Study 2022-01-23T12:35:43+00:00 Nyasha Beremauro Tecla Mlambo <p>The Zimbabwean government endorsed inclusive education in all mainstream learning institutions in the country. This pilot study sought to determine if they are challenges encountered by mainstream primary school teachers in their interaction with their pupils, teachers’ perspective of the challenges, in any, that can be addressed by occupational therapy (OT) services, and whether there are significant differences between private and public schools with regards to the encountered challenges. A cross sectional descriptive study was conducted with primary school teachers stratified by school type and grade. Data was collected using a pre-tested, self-administered questionnaire. Permission was granted by the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education and school heads. Ethical clearance was granted (JREC: 292/16 and MRCZ (MRCZ/B/1160). Thirty-two teachers participated in the study with the majority being female (84.4%). The mean age of participants was 44.6 years (SD 9.8) and mean years of teaching experience was 19.5 years (SD 10.6). A high proportion of teachers reported encountering children with gross motor, fine motor, visual perception, auditory language, tactile sensation and emotional problems. These were 75 - 100% in private schools, and 43.8 - 93.8% in public schools. Teachers from both settings encountered problems in similar magnitudes except for fine motor and auditory language where a higher proportion was reported in private schools (p&lt; 0.05). The majority of teachers indicated that the problems could be addressed by OT services. A high and similar proportion of teachers from private and public mainstream primary schools reported encountering problems that could benefit from OT services. The study therefore recommends that services should be availed in these settings in order to maximise the benefits of inclusive education.</p> Copyright (c) 0 Policy Implementation, Gender Disparities and Women Leadership in Zimbabwean Schools 2022-01-23T12:55:47+00:00 Geeta Motilal Vongai Chakanyuka <p>The general cultural practices in Zimbabwe have been predominantly patriarchal since the colonial period despite the efforts towards parity. This narrative qualitative study sought to identify the dynamics in gender disparities, educational leadership and gender policies. The value of this paper is to highlight the suboptimal implementation of the existing gender equality policy and the gender disparities experienced by female primary and secondary school heads in Harare Province. This study used semi-structured interviews and questionnaires to generate data from 10 female school heads. The results indicated that gender parity and policy implementation cannot be observed fully in educational leadership without placing patriarchal culture into context. The findings also revealed that, although Zimbabwe has promulgated gender policies and a gender sensitive constitution, the country ought to promote and effect gender equality and parity in leadership in educational institutions. The national constitution (2013) provides for gender equality. This study therefore proffers, among other recommendations, that patriarchal practices in Zimbabwe must be sensitive to gender policies so as to move towards equality and parity.</p> Copyright (c) 0