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  • Introduction


The objective of any advertiser is not only to communicate messages about his products/services to the target audience but also to receive favourable response. The realization of this objective will depend primarily on the preference of the audience, their types of programmes and the view patronage level. Advertiser are ready to invest on any medium that reaches a wider audience. Viewers of television  programmes constitute a major asset to the media. Media houses recognize this fact and try to design programmes that will appeal to them. It is true that the programmes they listen to or watch do not attract any direct payment. It is also true to say that they are expected to pay for the programmes eventually by purchasing the goods and services advertised in commercial messages.

The advertiser are aware of this basic fact and the audience are only willing to buy air time from TV stations that offer popular programmes which will guarantee wider exposure of their commercial messages. This expectation demands that television programme makers should devise and produce programmes that will attract viewers and transmit same through technically efficient stations. The higher the viewer ratio, the more prepared the advertisers will be to sponsor TV programmes, and patronize TV Stations.

Television as a medium of communication has gained reasonable acceptance among the Nigerian public but there is much generalization about the viewers that patronize TV stations and their programmes that is not based on any data. There is need, therefore, to design ways by which television stations and the programmes they beam to the viewers can be improved. Television directors in Nigeria are as yet unable to determine the rate of viewers patronage to their respective stations. Even when interest in a particular station is generated through improved programmes and transmissions, effort is not often made to sustain the interest. Arising from

this is the inability of most of the TV Stations to satisfy viewers and advertisers/sponsors in respect of preferences for their programmes. The basic problems confronting the two TV stations examined in this study, Anambra Broadcasting Service – TV (ABS – TV) and Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) include lack of data to determine the attitude of viewers toward their respective stations and programmes; their inability to determine their station profiles; and their inability to determine viewers reaction to cluttered advertisements.

The NTA has been criticized by performing artists such as Becky Umeh for pressuring artists to align their expression with government propaganda goals. The Guardian in its editorial of Sunday October 18, 2009 stated “The federal government-owned television network, the Nigeria Television Authority, (NTA) is arguably the largest of its type in Africa, but it is yet to have the operational freedom required to maximize its potentials”. However, the NTA’s monopoly of the Nigerian airspace was broken in the mid-1990s with the establishment of privately owned television stations and networks, notable among which is the Africa Independent Television(AIT).

By that Decree the Nigerian Television Authority became the only body empowered to undertake television broadcasting in Nigeria. All existing state television stations were thereby taken over and incorporated in NTA. The Authority was organized on the six zones structure such that each zone consist of 3 stations except for one which is made of four stations. The production centres exist in each state to contribute programmes to the zonal output. When all the installations have been completed, it should be possible for anyone in Nigeria to receive any of the six zonal programmes by choice. In 1977, when the NTA was inaugurated, there were 7 stations with 3 in their final stages of commissioning whilst the other states had none at all.

By December 1979, there were scheduled television broadcasts from every state capital in the country. The Decree establishing the NTA provides for one National Board and six Zonal Boards. The National Board has overall responsibility for policy and standards and remains the corporate legal entity. With the Director-General as Chief Executive he is assisted at the headquater by departmental Directors of Engineering, News, Finance, Programmes, Legal and Manpower Resources.The Chairman of each Zonal Board is a member of the Central Board and the chief executive to the Zonal Board is the Zonal Managing Director. The zonal management consists essentially of specialist advisers to the Zonal Managing Director namely the Secretary to the Board, Programmes coordinator, Chief Engineer and Chief Accountant. In addition, the Zonal Auditor ensures that proper books are kept in the various production Centres. It is the duty of the zone to ensure that the programmes broadcast conform with the national policies and standards of NTA. The production Centre which is the third tier within NTA does the actual making of programmes. It is headed by a General Manager and staff strength in the oldest stations numbers up to 500.

In March, 1980 the Board of the Authority was dissolved and its functions were taken over by Chief Olu Adebanjo, Special Adviser to the President on information. In September, 1980 the position was revised and an interim Committee was set up by the President-in-Council, with powers to carry out the functions of the Board. The members of the Committee are the permanent Secretary, Federal Department of Information, the Chief Press Secretary to the President, the Federal Director of Information, and the Director-General, NTA, with the Special Adviser now as Chairman of the Committee.


  • Statement of the problem

The rate at which TV programmes are created by the media and consumed by audiences warrants study. The degree to which the audience interacts psychologically with a medium or its messages” could influence the preference of the audience and their involvement can be seen as a direct personal experience during message reception and can be an indicator of cognitive, affective, and behavioural participation. Therefore in view of this, the study intends to evaluate television programme contents and audience preference  in Awka.



  • Significance Of The Study

The importance of TV programme contents can first be indicated through the value that people attach to television as a whole. Television is hugely important in people’s lives; they feel it is especially influential on young people due to the fact that it  is a major source of information for them, and especially important for older people too  acting as both a companion and a bridge to the outside world. While TV entertains its audiences, it is also being seen to play an integral role in the shaping of societal values. Subsequently, this research will also try to find out the roles that the contents of TV programmes have played in shaping perceptions of television station by television audience.

1.4 Research Question

The following questions were designed to guide the study:.

  1. How does audience in Awka perceive the programme contents of the two television stations ABS and NTA?
  2. What are the programme preferences of television audience in Awka?
  3. What are the viewers’ assessments of the TV stations in relation to the contents of their programmes?
  4. What influence does a presenter of a television programme have on the audience?

1.5 Objective of the study

This study is an investigation of TV programme content and audience preference in Awka.

The following objectives are accordingly outlined:

(a)  To determine the more preferred of the two television stations programmes.

(b) To determine audience perception of the programme.

(c) To determine the viewer’s assessment of the TV stations on selected attributes.

(d) To find out whether presenters of programmes have any influence on programmes preference by the audiences in Awka.

(e) To give possible recommendation.

1.6 Scope of the study/Delimitation

Television programmes have attracted attentions from audience as these programmes serve as a source of information to the audience providing a platform for them to reshape their preference. For the purpose of this study, The scope of this study shall be limited to only to two television stations (ABS and NTA, Awka). This limitation is to make the study manageable and enable the investigator (researcher) gather reliable information as regard the project topic under investigation.



The study unit was selected randomly from various group, sex, social level and different ethnic group of people living in Awka.

1.7 Conceptual Definition Of Terms

For the purpose of clarity and easy understanding of some terms used in this work, some key words used in this research work are listed below and properly defined.

  • Psychologically: Related to the mental and emotional state of a person.
  • Preference: A greater liking for one thing over the other.
  • Programme: A planned series of event.
  • Medium: An agency or means of doing something.
  • Influential: Having great influence.
  • Broadcasting: Transmitting by television or radio.
  • Integral:


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