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A mobile laboratory is a laboratory that is either fully housed within or transported by a vehicle such as a converted bus, converted truck or tractor-trailer. Mobile labs can serve a variety of functions in Science Education, Health care, Science research, soil analysis, monitoring Biosafety, as well as in teaching vocational and technical skills.

FMobile Laboratory and Entrepreneurial Intentions of Technical Vocational Education and Training Studentss

Mobile Laboratory and Entrepreneurial Intentions of Technical Vocational Education and Training Students

Photo: Ifeanyi B. Ohanu

Sometimes, Mobile laboratory is driven to schools, museums, and other community organizations, providing the schools with educational resources which they otherwise lack.

Factors Affecting Entrepreneurial Intentions of TVET Graduates

Rasli, Khan, and Malekifar (2013), defined entrepreneurial intention as the state of one’s mind to foster the new business or venture creation. Previous research on entrepreneurial intention has identified that three factors dominate entrepreneurial intention. One is the individual’s demographic profile that includes age, sex, previous experience, an influence of role model. The second one is personality traits that include self-efficacy, confidence, autonomy, a locus of control, risk-taking tendency, professional attraction. The third factor is contextual that includes education and environment (Wärneryd, 1988).

According to trait theory of entrepreneurship- entrepreneurial intentions are dictated by some particular traits. Those are: High need for achievement; which means a need to always achieve new bold goals, risk-taking propensity; which is defined as a willingness to take financial risks, tolerance for ambiguity; which refers no fear of the unknown, innovation; which is an ability to create new or modify existing business concepts, intuition; which is synonymous of make decisions based on ‘gut feelings’, internal locus of control which is synonymous to a belief that the future is determined by their own actions and also pro-activeness; which is making plans for events before they occur (Boyd &Vozikis, 1994).

The Place of the Mobile Lab in TVET

Mobile Labs are used for hands-on learning experiences especially in schools that do not have adequate facilities for teaching and learning TVET courses. Guse (2017) stated that one of the most popular uses of mobile labs is educational classrooms, providing community organizations and schools with educational courses for families and children in regions that are unable to maintain state-of-the-art instruction. Mobile laboratories have their own physical facilities that often include laboratory benches, equipment, supplies, fume hoods, electricity, water and other specialized gear to facilitate an engaging, hands-on learning experience in different Vocational and Technical Education Courses (Guse, 2017).

The use of Mobile Laboratory in teaching and learning is still at its early stages in Nigeria, as not many Mobile Labs exist in Nigeria. The Centre for Technical Vocational Education, Training and Research (CETVETAR), University of Nigeria Nsukka is about the only popular centre with some Mobile Labs in Nigeria.

The CETVETAR, University of Nigeria, Mobile Labs have contributed a lot in promoting skills training among TVET students in Nigeria. This has resulted in many students having the intention of acquiring skills that will enable them to become successful entrepreneurs in the future. With the use of Mobile Labs, students are eager to learn practical skills in different trades provided in the mobile lab. They are usually motivated by the desire to learn inside the mobile lab.

Photo: Ifeanyi B. Ohanu

The CETVETAR, UNN mobile labs have been used to provide training in the following trades:

Soap making, auto-mechanics, building construction, electronic repairs, electrical installation, plumbing and sewing and embroidery, ICT instructional packages among others.


Boyd, N. G. &Vozikis, G. S. (1994). The influence of self-efficacy on the development of entrepreneurial intentions and actions. Entrepreneurship Theory & Practice,18(4).

Guse, L. (2017). 7 Important Applications for Mobile Laboratories. Retrieved 16/12/18 from http://info.lifelinemobile.com/blog/7-important-applications-for-mobile-laboratories

Rasli, A. M., Khan, S. U. R., Malekitfar, S., &Jabeen, S. (2013). Factors affecting entrepreneurial intention among graduate students of university technology in Malaysia. International Journal of Business and Social Sciences, 4(2), 182-188.

Wärneryd, K. E. (1988). The Psychology of Innovative Entrepreneurship. In: van Raaij, W. F., van Veldhoven, G. M., and Wärneryd, K-E.  (eds.), Handbook of Economic Psychology. Dordrecht: Kluwer.

Lucubrate Magazine Issue 56, April 5th 2019

The Picture of the top: Soap Making, Photo: karitè

Categories: Education, Magazine, Enterpreneurship, TVET

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Emmanuel Osinem
Emmanuel Osinem

Emmanuel Osinem is an Instructional Programme Development/Delivery and Quality Assurance expert in Vocational Technical Education and holds a PhD in Vocational Agricultural Education. He has over 18 years of university-level teaching and research experiences (undergraduate and postgraduate) at the Faculty of Vocational Technical Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN). He has supervised over 60 B.Sc, 45 Masters and, 30 PhD theses. He had also successfully conducted a number of local and international funded researches, has many researched articles published in learned journals within and outside Nigeria and authored and co-authored a number of books. Prior to joining University of Nigeria, he has had over 11 years experience working with Post-primary Schools Services Commission, Anambra State, Nigeria designing and implementing agricultural programmes with focus on Youth Empowerment in various agricultural Occupations.
He is currently a Professor of Agricultural Education & Training, Dean, Faculty of Vocational & Technical Education, Coordinator, UNESCO-UNEVOC centre of Centre for Technical Vocational Education, Training & Research (CETVETAR) UNN, Coordinator/Founder, Innovations in TVET Research/Project Group. He is also the Human Capital Development Officer of Business Development Centre (BDC) UNN – an African Development Bank TVE funded project of Federal Ministry of Education from May 2014.
He was Director of CETVETAR from August 2016 to August 2018, Coordinator of Agricultural Education Unit of the Department of Vocational Teacher Education 2003-2009, Pioneer Head of Department of Agricultural and Bioresources Education, 2015-2016, Facilitator of research and training activities of CETVETAR Center of Excellence 4.5 Million US Dollars World Bank Grants under STEP-B Project 2010-2013, the Coordinator of training modules development, UNESCO-HP Project on Biotechnology Research/Training with Nigerians in Diaspora 2007-2012, the Chair of special committee that consulted for His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Anambra State, Nigeria on Modalities for Increasing Agricultural Production in the State from 1999-2003.
In the international academic/project engagements, Prof Osinem is presently the UNN Coordinator of the three versions of Erasmus Mundus Academic Mobility Projects – the Mundus ACPII, the ANGLE and the DREAM projects in a consortia lead by University of Porto, Portugal and Intra-Africa Academic Mobility – AFRICOM Project in a partnership led by University of Younde 1, Cameroun; represents University of Nigeria in the on-going European Commission funded Joint Africa-EU Partnership Strategy on harmonization of quality and standards in Africa higher education – the Tuning Africa Project phases I & II under Teacher Education; he was part of the team – the Nigerian Special Delegation on Higher Education in 2010 to CHINA to negotiate with World Class Centres of Excellence and Universities in various areas of Science and Technology for partnership and cooperation with international institutions, professional associations and the organized private sector with Nigerian universities and newly established centers of excellence under the World Bank Assisted STEP-B project. He was the team leader of Partnerships for Smart Farming Media project evolving from African Green Revolution Conference held in Oslo, Norway, 2008. Professor Osinem is an alumnus of International Training Centre of International Labour Organization (ILO) in Turin, Italy having participated in ILO Training on Lifelong e-learning: innovative Solutions in 2009 and Skills Development Academy Programme, in 2012.
His areas of research interests include Programme and Instructional Development in Agriculture and Vocational and technical trades; TVET Governance and Policy Issues; Research & Development in Vocational and Technical Education; Innovativeness/outcome-based approaches in Project Management.

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