Messy lecture rooms in our universities are not conducive for learning

A lecture hall at Maseno University. [Collins Oduor, Standar]

The unpleasant conditions in lecture rooms are a great barrier to smooth learning in universities.

Universities are meant to provide facilities for teaching and doing research and are also authorised to grant academic degrees in specific areas of specialization.

They play a big role in enlightening and equipping young people with skills required in job markets. However, it is emerging that some institutions of higher learning are not well equipped to deliver on their mandate.

It is so irritating that sometimes learners attend lectures and leave empty because the environment and delivery were poor. This leads to failure in examinations.

Some lecturers do not care at all. They conduct classes with more than 500 learners without using a public address system. This means that only those who are near them can hear what they are saying.

To make matters worse, students who are not following the lecture resort to making noise and other disturbances. Some take to their mobile phones to keep them busy as they wait for the lecture to end. Another issue of concern is poor presentation skills among lecturers. Because of this, sometimes only half of the class is engaged while the rest are unable to get the lecturer's pronunciation.

Students should voice these concerns and not suffer in silence. It's the mandate of universities to ensure a smooth and effective learning environment.

Lecturers should consider splitting large classes into smaller groups to make lessons interactive.

The use of public address systems can also be of great help if there is a need to have large classes.

If we cannot make lectures effective for all learners, then we have a long way to go.

We should be ready to get less skilled experts in the job market because students will leave college half-baked. This will not only affect students but the entire production and service delivery chain.