Challenges and Remedies to Effective Counselling Practicumas Perceived by Postgraduate Student-Counsellors in Three Universities in South-East, Nigeria
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The study sought specifically to find out challenges to effective counselling practicum in schools and their remedies as perceived by postgraduate student-counsellors in three universities in South-East, Nigeria. The design of the study was descriptive survey design. Two research questions and one null Hypothesis guided the study. A sample size of 120 students currently studying guidance and counselling at 2nd and 3rd degree levels out of a population of 142, selected using proportionate sampling technique participated in the study. A questionnaire that was duly validated and with reliability index values of 0.56 and 0.65, was used for data collection. Mean, standard deviation and t-test were used to analyze data. The findings were that lack of fund, inadequate pre-practicum preparation, uncondusive practicum environment (sites), students’ ignorance about practicum supervision, inability to satisfy the needs of clients were perceived as the challenges. Solution included payment of practicum allowance, allowing students to choose practicum settings for themselves, strict supervision, provision of moral support and adequate simulation in micro practicum. There was no significant gender difference in the perception of the students. Based on the findings, discussion, conclusion and recommendations were made. One of the recommendations was that counsellor-educators on the universities staff should proactively encourage universities’ management to be paying practicum allowance to the students to enable them procure practicum materials and be mentally prepared for the exercise.