Academic Advising Decision Support System for Nigerian Universities

Purpose: Due to the rapid growth of Universities in Nigeria over the past several years, there have been complaints regarding the student advising process. Thus leading to inadequate and inappropriate advise to student. The purpose of this research is to design and implement an academic decision support system using the economic principle of demand and supply to resolve the challenges noted from the existing structures.

Design/methodology/approach: A survey of the present course advising system in Nigeria Universities is carried out to gather information regarding the problems with current advising processes as well as the likelihood that students would use the Internet-based advising system if designed and implemented. The analysis of the existing system in Nigerian Universities in the three geo-political regions, namely: South-South, South-East and South-West. Based on the results from the survey, decision support system architecture was used to design the functionality of the proposed course advising system.

Findings: All analysis was computed using the SPSS computer application program. A summary of the result analysis shows that for course level advisers 6.5% strongly disagrees, 12.9% undecided, while 51.6% strongly agrees to use a web-based system if made available.  For the students, 0.5% strongly disagrees, 7.4% undecided while 59.6% strongly agrees to use the web-based course advising system if available. This agrees with the observation of Changchit et al. (2003).  Figure 1 shows a diagram of the Academic Advising Decision Support System (AADSS) Architecture to solve the current problem of academic advising in Nigeria universities.  The frame-work is based on Educational Demand (ED) and Educational Supply (ES) using Decision Support System and the software to drive the decision support is still under construction.

Research implications: The former system was manual (paper-based). The proposed system when fully implemented will be completely paperless, since all forms of correspondence will be online. Also the fear of students interacting with their course advisers will be reduced.

Originality/value: With the advances in technology, the feasibility of developing a web-based advising system as an alternative to the current advising process in Nigerian universities is a welcome development. Such a system will help reduce time and repetitive process for both the course adviser and students.

Keywords: Decision support systems, Internet based systems, Course advising process, Educational demand, and Educational supply.

Nwelih, E. and Chiemeke, S.C. (2010) Academic Advising Decision Support System for Nigerian Universities,Anthology of Abstracts of the 3rd International Conference on ICT for Africa, March 25-27, Yaoundé, Cameroon. Baton Rouge, LA: International Center for IT and Development.


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