Investigating school counselors' self-perceived competency in tackling in-school adolescents' mental health problems in Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria

Noah Agbo, Feyisayo Adebayo-Sanni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The population of Nigeria is mostly youthful, with around 40%being below 18 years old. Most of this group attend either primary or secondary school. The adolescence period is a delicate period that heralds mental health issues, especially for in-school adolescents. Therefore, support is needed, which must be provided by competent school counsellors working in several schools. This study ascertains the self-perceived competency levels of school counsellors in tackling mental health problems for in-school adolescents.

Method: This paper uses qualitative research with a convenient sampling technique. The study was carried out among 37 participants, which included senior secondary school counsellors, teachers who were recognised as and performed the role of school counsellors, and stakeholders of counselling services in private and public secondary schools in Ilorin, Kwara state, Nigeria.

Results: School counsellors perceived their competency levels to be high, especially with some enablers in place, such as their positive attitudes, passion for the job, experience and on-the-job training. However, social barriers, physical barriers, a lack of human and material resources and unmet expectations were seen as barriers to school counsellors’ competency in addressing the mental health issues of in-school adolescents in Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria.

Conclusion: School counsellors are a functional part of the school system and thus should be empowered to contribute to the wellbeing of in-school adolescents.

Original languageEnglish
Article number14
Pages (from-to)284-309
JournalMokslinės Minties Šventė
Volume2023
Publication statusPublished - 09 Dec 2023
Externally publishedYes

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