Full Project – Factors and effects of poor background on the students academic performance in chemistry at senior secondary schools
1.1 Background to the study.
Chemistry as a course of study is very stimulating and rewarding subject, its study prepares the student to obtain the ability of thinking critically and how to solve problems. Chemistry is a natural science that involves the study of chemicals, reactions, and how they are formed. In other word it is the phenomenon or system pertaining to the physical aspect. Chemistry is an important science subject that makes enormous academic demands on student in its learning. The learning of chemistry is difficult at best and almost impossible at worst. But because of its great importance to science. There is understandably huge interest in student’s achievement in chemistry. Thus, the background of student’s (chemistry included) offered at senior second school level have some factors which have problems that affect the assimilation of students.
According to Schalar and Schalar 2000, chemistry is the science that deals with the properties, composition and structure of substances. It can also be define as element and compounds the transformations they undergo and the energy that is release or absorb during this process. Every substance whether naturally occurring or artificially produce consists of one or more of the hundred odd species of atoms that have been identified as elements. Although these atoms in turn are composed of more elementary particles, they are the building blocks of chemical substances; there is no quantity of oxygen, mercury, or gold. For example smaller than an atom of that substances.
Education is one of the most important aspects of human resource development. Every child should have the opportunity to achieve his or her academic potential. It is generally noticed that at least 20% of children in a classroom get poor marks – they are “scholastically backward”. Poor school performance should be seen as a “symptom” reflecting a larger underlying problem in children. This symptom not only results in the child having a low self-esteem, but also can cause significant stress to the parents. It is essential that this symptom be scientifically analyzed to discover its underlying cause(s) and find a remedy. This article reviews the causes for children to have poor school performance and describes its management. At Senior Secondary School Chemistry aimed at developing learners understanding of the basic scientific ideas to everyday life. Olatu, (2000). According to Beauchamp, (2001) there are three broad categories of knowledge which include; humanities, natural sciences and social sciences. The natural sciences include mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology and even geology. These disciplines serve all other disciplines: from these basic division of knowledge comes area of applied (practical) knowledge which includes architecture, engineering, education and law among others. The K.I.E (2002) syllabus presents chemistry as a body of knowledge about the physical environment. It employs a systematic scientific methodology of study to arouse learner’s way of reasoning and create positive attitude. According to Salleh, (2004) chemistry is a branch of knowledge about the material world. Nature provides all these materials resources that human beings need to live and manage their living. The human beings material resources interaction must be based on some understanding on the properties of matter, how they behave and the laws that they are subjected to. Physics is one of the sciences is the secondary school curriculum, like other subjects it performs some vital roles which help in the achievement of some national goals.
The poor academic performance of student’s in chemistry at senior secondary school level has been a subject of concern to many people including parents, administrators, Educators, Psychologist and counselors. Poor academic performance according to Aremu, (2003) is a performance that is adjudged by the examine/testee and some other significant as falling below an expected standard. Also. Aremu, (2000) stresses that academic failure is not only frustrating to the pupils and the parents, its effects are equally grave on the society in terms of death of manpower in all spheres of the economy and politics. Various factors have been identified in several research studies to be responsible for continuous decaying of our educational system. Such factors include: Family background, lack of interest of the students, attitude of teachers towards works. method of teaching used by the teacher, gender, environmental factors, poor primary school background in science teachers qualification and inadequate laboratory facilities. Orhungor, (1990) asserted that the cultural background of the family is determined to a large extent by its socio-economic background. The setting and socializing influence of the family mold the personality of the child. Morankiyo, ( 2003 ) belives that the falling level of academic achievement is attributed to teachers non-use of verbal reinforcement strategy. Others found out that the attitude of some teachers to their job is reflected in their poor attendance of lessons, lateness to school and unsavory comments about student’s performance.
The national policy on education (NPE). (2004) stipulated that primary education is an instrument for national development that fosters the worth and development of the individual for further education, general development of the society and equality of educational opportunities to all Nigerian children irrespective of real or marginal disabilities. However, different people at different time have passed the blame of poor performance to students because of their low retention, parental factors, association with wrong peers, low achievement and the likes (Aremu&sokan, 2003; Aremu&Oluwale, 2001; Aremu, 2000). Saga (2009) identify specific variables such as poor primary school background in science, lack of incentives for test, lack of interest on the part of students, students not interested in hard work, incompetent teachers in primary school, large classes, and fear of the subject psychologically. Despite all the possible efforts put forward by various government and voluntary agencies to curb the trends, the country is yet to witness the rise it wishes to see in the educational system. Therefore the researcher’s interest and motivation in this topic is the fact that some students are particularly good in their work, while some are extremely bad. When such differences in scores are traced, it is more often discovered that the background is the major contributory factor. Therefore, it is more important that such levels of contributions and effects that background have on children be examine so that useful suggestions to parents, teachers, educational planners and government could be made.
1.2 Statement of the Problems
In recent years, a great awareness has developed among parents, teachers, educators, government officials, researchers and educational planners over those factors that affect students performance in chemistry in Nigeria. It has been quite clear that students performance in chemistry (especially in Argungu metropolis) is poor and requires immediate attention. All over the country, there is a consensus opinion about the falling standard of education in Nigeria (Adebule, 2004). Improvement in student’s performance has become the researchers concern. It is therefore based on this issue, this study was designed to determined the factors and effect of poor background on the students’ performance in chemistry at senior secondary school level in Argungu metropolis.
For many years, now there have been expressed concerns about the problems faced by most of the chemistry teachers in secondary schools. Such problems include in sufficient training, inadequate facilities, poor teaching techniques, and inappropriate language of communications. It has been observed that for many years science secondary school students use to have massive failure in their chemistry examinations both terminal and School Leaving Certificate Examination Examinations (SSCE). In view, of this now the researchers are interested in finding out the cause of that massive failure, taking into consideration the effect of teachers’ behavior. Chemistry, like many other science subjects require a lot of skills for effective and successful teaching. The problems of teaching chemistry are not recent issues but have existed since the introduction of the subject in the school curriculum.
Education sector in Nigeria has series of challenges. One important area of the challenges lack of good motivated teachers in secondary school level to cope up with the modern technological challenges. According to the World Bank Report (2013), the quality of education in most developing countries is low, coverage is insufficient, and literacy level is low especially in the area of teacher quality, materials production and utilization. Improving quality in education requires adequate resources, competent teachers, appropriate facilities, materials and methods which are lacking; these form part of the problems in the study. Thus, the major challenge for the educational system in contemporary Nigeria is the lack of qualified teachers to teach at various levels of education (Hamza, 2010). This also has adverse effects on behaviors in teaching at all levels, which also affect the quality delivery of educational institutions, teachers ‘training and production towards chemistry.
The major complaints in teaching chemistry have always been associated with the behavior of the teachers towards chemistry. Among the noted teachers’ behavior are:
Domination of the class by the teacher alone.
Inappropriate language of communication.
Discouraging the students to ask questions.
Lateness and abstinence of the teachers from their lessons.
As a result of this, the researchers therefore aim at looking into the effects of behavior of teachers during the teaching of chemistry on the academic achievement of chemistry students and at the end suggest possible solutions for effective teaching and learning of chemistry.
1.3 Objectives of the Study.
The objectives of this study include:-
To determine the effect of family background on the student performance in chemistry.
To find out the effect teachers attitudes towards work on students performance in chemistry.
To ascertain the teaching method used by the chemistry teachers in teaching chemistry.
1.4 Research Questions.
For the purpose of this research work, the following research questions have been formulated.
What are the effect on the student performance in chemistry in Argungu metropolis
What are teacher’s attitude towards students performance in chemistry in Argungu metropolis
Which type of teaching method do chemistry teachers use in teaching chemistry at senior secondary school level in Argungu metropolis
What are the gender difference on students performance in chemistry in Argungu metropolis
1.5 Research Hypothesis.
The following hypothesis will be tested to guide this study.
Ho1: there is no significant relationship in effect of family back ground and the student’s performance in chemistry.
Ho2. There is no is no significance relationship between teachers attitude toward student performance in chemistry
Ho3. There is no significance relationship between method of teaching used by trachers and student performance in chemistry
Ho4. There is no significance relationship between gender and students performance in chemistry
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Full Project – Factors and effects of poor background on the students academic performance in chemistry at senior secondary schools