1.1 Background to the Study
The availability, effective organization and utilization of multimedia resources by a qualified Social Studies teacher putting into consideration the topic to be taught and the students’ level and ability are the starting point and foundation for attaining effective interaction and communication between teacher and students in Social Studies classroom. For the success or failure of Social Studies lessons depends on the choice, organization and utilization of multimedia resources by the social studies teacher. Integration of multimedia resources into instructional process can help to reduce curriculum barriers and improve learning for all student.
The introduction of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in teaching remains one of the important dimensions of human technological advances in contemporary times. It is regarded as one of the main innovations in the education sector due to the fact that it has the potential to bring about substantial system-wide benefits in terms of improving the quality of teaching and learning process. In the light of this, Abdallah (2013) stated that there is of course a need to emphasize the added value that ICT can bring about to teaching and learning and that effort should be geared towards effective development of learning resources. The renewed interest and the euphoria in ICT today might have been borne out of the fact that Nigeria does not want to lag behind in the global race that is basking or being controlled by the upsurge of ICT revolution in all aspects of life including education. Many countries around the world have introduced Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) into schools via different courses of action. Their use is also underlined by Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development [OECD] (2001) as a necessity for improving quality in teaching and learning. Technologies such as multimedia are seen to have special significance for teacher education because of the growing expectation that teachers must be technologically literate in order to provide relevant instruction in schools. Many scholars argued that it is the responsibility of teacher education programme to produce students who are confident and competent users of technology. Because students needed to see technology modelled for them by their teachers (Davis, Willis, Fulton, & Austin, 1995), teacher educators faced mounting pressure to be skilled in the use of a range of technologies in order that these skills are passed on to prospective teachers in school systems. Interactive multimedia resources are examples of these technologies.
The term multimedia means more than one media. Multimedia are instructional programmes that can be highly interactive and feature combinations of sound, animation, video, graphics, and text. According to Hostetler (2001), ―Multimedia is the use of computer to present and combine text, graphics, audio and video with links and tools that let the user navigate, interact, create and communicate‖. In other words, multimedia is the combination of various digital media, into an integrated multi-sensory interactive application or presentation to convey information to an audience, (Butcher and Powell 2005; Demodharan and Rengaranjan 2007). Therefore, multimedia is a learning tool that allows learners to organize, represent and construct knowledge in multiple modalities that include text, audios, graphics, animation and videos, (Wang 2006: 316). In addition, multimedia programmes do not necessarily require Internet access.
Statement of the Problem
The current teaching strategies in Social Studies in Nigeria’s Colleges of Education have failed to enhance problem-solving skills, curiosity, and critical and logical thinking among students. There is a need to move from traditional approaches to more innovative Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) enriched approaches for meaningful learning. The fastpaced, diverse, and technologically advanced world has posed challenges for both teachers and students. It is against this background that this study evaluated the availability, organization and utilization of multimedia resources for teaching Social Studies in colleges of education
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