Strategies to Improve the Performance of Students in Science Subjects: A Case Study of Selected Secondary School in Egor Local Government Area of Edo State
This research work is designed to find out the strategies or ways of improving the poor performance of students in science subjects in some selected secondary schools in Egor Local Government Area of Edo State. The research instrument used was the questionnaires; a hundred respondents were used for the study. Problems were raised and the results obtained were used to answer the research questions. The result of the investigation revealed that;
- Lack of science equipment in the school affects the studying of science hence leading to poor performance.
- An inadequate timetable also affects science teaching leading to poor performance.
- Lack of library and science textbooks was another cause of the poor performance.
- The result also revealed that though there are qualified teachers teaching science subjects in secondary schools in Egor Local Government Area of Edo State their methods of teaching affect students’ performance in science.
- Poor payment of teachers and lack of motivation also affect the performance of science subjects. The following stated hypothesis was used which are;
- Teachers in secondary school in Egor Local Government Area are not professionally and academically qualified to teach and students do not do practical work in science.
- Secondary school teachers and students do not do practical work in science.
- Secondary schools teachers do not allocate enough periods for science.
- There are no laboratory facilities in secondary schools. Based on these findings the following recommendations were made;
- Government should evolve principles and policies that would help to enhance science education.
- Qualified science teachers with a least B.Ed. the certificate should be employed to teach basic science at the secondary school level. They know the key concepts in science.
- Emphasis should be laid on practical aspects of science.
- Teachers should endeavor to make use of local materials required for effective teaching of science.
- The students on their part should try and pay listening ears during science teaching
- Government should ensure regular allowances for science teachers, pay them well so that they can be motivated to impacts the best knowledge at their disposal.
TABLE OF CONTENT
Background of the study
Statement of the problem
Purpose of the study
Significance of the study
Scope of the study
Limitation of the study
Definition of terms
The population of the study
Instrumentation for data collection
Validation of instrument
Method of data analysis
Data analysis and presentation
Summary, conclusion, and recommendation
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Science was the last major subject that was introduced in the school curriculum. It was introduced in a few schools in form of nature study and the emphasis on getting information about our environment from first-hand observation rather than from books. In Nigeria curriculum. Science education first appeared in 1859 when the church missionary society (CMS) grammar school Lagos introduced the rudiment of nature study. This introduction was done by people who were both specialists in science and master teachers, they were able to make the study of the nature of science a dynamic and unforgettable learning experience for students. Baja (1982) in Igwe (2003) described it as the learning of the environment and hygiene other schools like Saint Gregory’s College Lagos, Hope Waddle institution Calabar and Baptist training College Ogbomoso followed later in teaching nature study. By this time according to Abdulahi (2000), a rural science syllabus was formulated for science teaching at primary schools, and other biology-related subjects were introduced such as botany, physiology, and agriculture at the secondary school level. However once entrusted to teachers with little or no background in science and with varying degrees of teaching effectiveness, the study on nature of science in the schools deteriorated bodily.
Simply, world science came from Latin “Scientia” meaning knowledge. It refers to a system of acquiring knowledge. This system uses observation and experimentation to describe and explain natural phenomena. In other words, the term science also refers to an organized body of knowledge people have gained using that system, less formally. The word science often describes any systematic field of study or the knowledge gained from it. The education attainment of the student in science is inevitable and should be looked into with a lot of invention in both teaching on side of a student at all level. The training of the students most especially, children in primary schools is very important since the extent of a nation’s future labor force, leadership, political stability, and strength of technical knowledge all lies in their hands. The importance of science and its implementation to the society and environment of the people is well recognized by every nation. Some scientific knowledge is needed by everyone in other to have an idea of how one is fed, entertained clothed, and sheltered to ensure a more profitable exploration of scientific and technological potentials, it is, therefore, necessary to emphasize scientific knowledge. In respect of this integrated science, subjects were introduced into the school curriculum by the science teachers association of Nigeria about a few decades ago and were made compulsory at the junior secondary school level.
Ebina (2010) observed that the cooperative arrangement between the science teachers association of Nigeria (STAN) and the defunct comparative educational research and adaptation center (CESAC) now merged into the Nigeria educational research and development council (NERDC) heralded by the first national effort at science curriculum development to improve science education in Nigeria in 1969. The result of this 1969 curriculum conference was the information of two major science projects (NISP) and the Nigerian Secondary Schools Sciences Projects (NSSSP) later the National Primary Science and Mathematics Projects (NPSMP) were developed. Presently there are basic science and technology projects (BSTP) for primary schools. To achieve good results in the science curricular projects government policies were specially geared towards encouraging science teaching and learning at all levels. Ivowi (2000) observed that government science policies have aimed at boosting and improving science education.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Science teaching in secondary schools, in general, has so many problems associated with it, for example, lack of qualified teachers teaching science subjects, lack of science equipment to carry out practical’s in science classes, lackadaisical attitude on the part of the students towards science subjects. The government has tried to put more effort to put an end to these problems yet their effort has proved abortive due to one reason or the other.
Thus the researcher has decided to make an in-depth study into the factors that contribute to these problems despite the effort put by the successive government with a quest of finding a solution to these problems.
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The purpose of the research is to study the behavior and attitude of students towards the studying and teaching of science. The researcher also wants to find out the general view held by the public as to the causes of students’ poor level of achievement in science. To examine the ways of science in some selected secondary schools and how to improve and better the performance of the students.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The significance of this study lies in the fact that the performance of students in science subjects over the years facilitates an assessment for mapping out strategies that will improve the performance in the nearby future, especially in the Egor Local Government Area of Edo State and Nigeria as a whole and this is done to pinpoint to science students that learning science through reading is important because it helps them to;
- Think and learn
- Teach students how to use reading materials effectively
- Know that there are several sources of information available on different reading level
- Know that learning through self-discovery is the best way to science
- Assist students in developing their science vocabularies
- Teach science students how to apply what has been learned to new situations which will serve as evaluating techniques
- Assist students studying science subjects to improve their interest in studying science through raising questions that can be solved in the class.
- Know the aims at signifying the importance of experience or demonstration and by bringing challenges to slow and rapid learning through oral written tests.
1.5 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
This research question is to find out the strategies that when applied will improve the performance of students in science subjects in the Egor Local Government Area of Edo State. In doing this, the following questions guide;
- What are the qualifications of teachers?
- What are teachers’ competencies and self0efficiency in their instructional delivery?
- What method of teaching do the teachers use in teaching science subjects?
- Are the teachers paid well by the government?
- What effort are the government and community making to solve the government?
- Do the schools have science equipment?
- What is the behavior of students towards the learning of science subjects?
- What is the content of the science curriculum and its implementation?
The researcher is of the view that the answers to the above questions would help to identify the ways of improving science in our schools.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study will involve the performance of students and teachers towards the study of science in some selected secondary schools in the Egor Local Government Area of Edo State. This project deals with the causes of students’ poor performance in science subjects and how it affects them. And also the remedies to these problems will be highlighted.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Science: An accumulated body of knowledge and skills about nature.
Laboratory: It is a building where the scientific purpose of carrying out practical work, also laboratory can be seen as a room or building used for scientific research, experimentation, testing, etc.
Qualified teachers: These are sets of teachers that are trained in institutions and are certified as professional teachers eg. TC II, NCE, B.Ed, etc.
Constraints: To force somebody to do something or behave in a particular way or to restrict somebody or something.
Abortive: An action that is successfully failed.
Heralded: Something that shows that something else is going to happen soon.
Lackadaisical: Not showing enough care or enthusiasm.
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