EFFECT OF TEACHERS QUALIFICATION ON STUDENTS PERFORMANCE IN EXTERNAL EXAMINATION
1.1 Background to the Study
The quality of education of a nation could be determined by the quality of her teachers. The most important factor in improving students’ achievement in Nigeria secondary school is by employing seasoned qualified teachers in all schools (Abe and Adu, 2013). Investment on quality of teachers is related to improvement in students’ performance. Specifically, the measurement of teacher’s preparation and certification are correlates of students’ achievement in secondary school. It is further reported that, teacher’s characteristics such as certification status and degree in area of specialization are very significant and positively correlated with students learning outcomes in political science. This report was in line with the findings of Salman (2009).
Abe and Adu (2013) and Wiki (2013) opined that, a teaching qualification or teacher qualification is one of a number of academic and professional degree that enables a person to become a registered teacher in primary or secondary school. Such qualifications include, but are not limited to, the Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGDE). The Professional Diploma in Education (PDE), Bachelor of Education (B.Ed) and Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE). Academically, qualified teachers refer to those who have academic training as a result of enrolment into educational institution and obtained qualifications such as HND, B.Sc, B.A, and M.A. and so on; while professionally qualified teachers are those who got professional training that gave them professional knowledge, skills, techniques, aptitudes as different from the general education (Edu and Kalu, 2012). They hold degrees like, NCE, B.Ed., B.Sc. Ed, B.A. Ed, and M.Ed and so on. On the other hand, there are studies that have found no significant relationship between teacher educational qualification and students’ academic achievement.
The mastery of a subject is determined by the performance of the students in a subject at prescribed examinations. Any interactive activity between a teacher and the students is expected to produce learning outcomes in the learners. When such an activity fails to produce a change in behaviour (learning) in the learners, then, there is a problem. The performance of students in secondary schools is a major concern to educators. Aghyeneku in Sakiyo and Sofeme (2008) noted that students’ performance in subjects is low in both national and state examinations. A number of reasons can be identified to be responsible for the poor performance of students in secondary schools. These include the curriculum method, teachers’ methods of teaching, parents, government, lack of facilities and others (Ahiakwo, 2003). Survey from schools (Ajayi, 2007) revealed that inadequacy of good instructional materials, in the schools also affect negatively the effective learning of in the schools.
According to Ajayi (2007), engagement in reflective practice involves actions that help people pay attention to and learn from experiences. Some examples of cultivating reflective practices include observing the present level of performance, noting accomplishments, analysing strengths and areas for improvements, analysing and developing identity and improving levels of knowledge.
Falling level of academic achievement is attributable to teacher’s non-use of verbal reinforcement strategy, others found out that the attitude of some teachers to their job is reflected in their poor attendance to lessons, lateness, to school, unsavory comments about students’ performance that could damage their ego, poor method of teaching and the likes affect pupil’s academic performance. The problem of lack of qualified teachers is prominent in many schools where teachers are neither academically nor professionally qualified or both. Some teachers of Financial may have adequate education in but have not attended a training school to be professionally trained. This problem is encountered in the Senior Schools in Nigeria. In the field of education in particular, it appears most teachers taking the course have adequate knowledge in the subject matter but are unable to impart the knowledge into the students.
According to Adentwi (2005), a subject specialist or professionally trained teacher is one who has pursued detailed formal and systematic study of a particular subject. The role of such a subject specialist is to act as storehouse of essential and well processed information leading his students to gain deep insights into the various subjects to be taught. According to Buddi and Zamarro (2009), teacher quality is a key element of student academic success. Obasi (2010) also asserts that the professional and academic training and qualification of the teacher can raise the prospects of a student’s academic performance and attainments. This validates the truism that the quality of our schools cannot be better than the quality of the teachers we have.
According to Olaofe (2005), teacher’s qualifications has witnessed a steady decline from a large number of teachers who could not make learning take place, to teachers who could make students unlearn what they have accidentally learnt somewhere else. The exodus of competent personnel from the teaching profession largely due to its unattractiveness in terms of prestige, allowances and salaries, coupled with the issues of death and retirement, has led to glaring cases of teacher-shortage in our secondary schools.
Since the traditional role of education is to provide answers to national and personal goals and need, it means that education also has to change to meet the new challenges at the international, national, community and individual levels. By extension, the quality of training, as well as the number of teacher-trainees produced to meet the needs of secondary education in Nigeria have to change to meet the exigencies of our time. Ortese (2006) opines that the kind of education required to meet these challenges is by all estimation outside the competences of ill–trained, barely educated teachers, whom are capable of causing students to unlearn what they might have accidentally learnt elsewhere.
It is in support of the foregoing that Ortese (2006) states that teacher education is central to matching these new changes with the required personnel. In other words, teacher education programme has to produce qualitative and quantitative teachers that will produce students who will not only fit into the emergent society, but will also provide solutions to new problems of the Nigerian nationhood. If teachers are crucial in the attainment of national goals through education, then there is need to take a second look at teacher’s qualifications and experience, especially when national goals, economic, political, social and personal needs change.
While professionally qualified secondary school teachers are those who got professional training that gave them professional knowledge, skills, techniques, aptitude as different from the general education. The differences in schools achievement of student in Nigeria has been and still a source of concern and research interest to educators, government and parents. This is so because of the great importance that education has on the national development of the country. All over the country there are concerns of opinions about fallen standard of education in Nigeria (Adebule, 2004). Parents are in total agreement that this huge investment on education is not yielding. Teachers also complain of students’ low performance at both internal and external examinations. The annual release of Senior Secondary Certificate Examination results (S.S.C.E) conducted by West AfricanExamination Council (W.A.E.C) justified the problematic nature and generalization of poor secondary school students performance in different school subjects. Poor academic performance according to Aremu (2003) is a performance that is adjusted by the examinee/testee and some other significant indices as falling below an expected standard. Poor academic performance has been observed in school subject especially Mathematics, and English language among secondary school students (Adesemoro, 2005).
Aremu (2000) stresses that academic failure is not only frustrating to the students and the parents, its effects are equally grave on the society in terms of dearth of manpower in all spheres of the economy and politics. Education at secondary school level is supposed to be the bedrock and the foundation towards higher knowledge in tertiary institutions. It is an investment as well as an instrument that can be used to achieve a more rapid economic, social, political, technological, scientific and cultural development in the country.
The national policy on education (2004) stipulated that secondary education is an investment for national development that foster the worth and development of the individual for further education and development, general development of the society and equality of educational opportunities to all Nigerian children irrespective of any real or marginal disabilities. The role of secondary education is to lay the foundation for further education and if a good foundation is laid at this level, there are likely to be no problem at subsequent levels. However, people at different time have passed the blame of poor performance in secondary school to students because of their low retention, parental factors, association with wrong peers, low achievement, motivation and the likes (Aremu and Sokan, 2003; Aremu and Oluwole, 2001; Aremu, 2000).
Morakinyo (2003) believed 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 jobs is reflected in their poor attendance to lessons, lateness to school, unsavory comments about student’s performance that could damage their ego, poor method of teaching and the likes affect pupil’s academic performance.
Interest in student performance and teacher qualifications has intensified among education policymakers and researchers. During this time period, research has accumulated that links student achievement to the qualifications of teachers. Attitudes are generally regarded as having been learnt. They predispose an individual to action that has some degree of consistency and can be evaluated as either negative or positive (Fishbein and Ajzen, in McMillen, Seastrom, Gruber, McGrath and Cohen, 2000). The experiences of teachers influence the formation of attitudes and these, in turn, influence their classroom practices. These attitudes and practices may sometimes be at variance with the main direction of their tertiary teaching methods courses. Thus it is crucial in understanding secondary teachers that these attitudes are made explicit and examined in order to adapt tertiary courses to the needs of these students.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The issue of professionalism in teaching has been on course for quite some decades ago. Scholars argued the necessity of skilled teachers for effective learning. The success or failure of any educational programme rests majorly on the adequate availability of qualified (professional), competent and dedicated teachers. The ability of a teacher to teach is not derived only from one’s academic background but it is based upon outstanding pedagogical skill acquired. The realization of the national growth in technology as highlighted in the Nigeria national policy on education hinges (among others) largely on the quality of the teachers.
Over the years, students’ achievement in secondary schools has prompted educational researchers to continuously make relentless efforts at identifying mitigating factors that might account for the observed poor performance. Some research studies suggest that factors inside and outside the classroom affect students’ achievement and interest. Among other variables identified are: Students’ poor study habit, low self-esteem, teacher factors (teacher quality), shortage of qualified teachers, inadequate teaching facilities in Schools, home factor, school environmental factors and many others. Despite their efforts, students continue to exhibit poor performance in the subject.
In this vein, teacher factor has been linked to be one of the causes of students’ poor performance, in this sense there is need to look into the quality of teachers in our secondary schools because effective teaching elicit effective learning. Teacher is the principal initiator of learning. Therefore, this study is designed to survey the effect of teachers’ academic qualification and working experience on academic performance of students of some selected secondary schools in Ikere-Ekiti.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The main purpose of the study is to find out the effect of teachers qualification and working experience on academic performance of students of some selected secondary schools in Ikere-Ekiti. Specifically the study sought to:
- find out the extent to which teachers qualification affect students academic performance in secondary school,
- find out whether students contribute to teachers teaching in the classroom,
- find out the effect of teachers teaching method on students academic performance
- examine the difference between NCE, BSC.Ed and MSc teachers teaching in secondary school
1.4 Research Questions
Based on the above stated objectives, the following questions were raised.
- Does teachers qualification and working experience affect students academic performance in secondary school?
- Do students contribute to teachers teaching in the classroom?
- What is the effect of teachers teaching method on students academic performance in secondary school?
- Is there any significant difference between NCE, BSC.Ed and MSc teachers teaching in secondary school?
1.5 Research Hypotheses
The following hypotheses were raised to guide the study
- There is no significance relationship between teachers qualification and students academic performance in secondary school
- There is no significance relationship between teachers working experience and students performance in secondary school
- Instructional materials have no significant effect on students academic performance in secondary school
1.6 Significance of the Study
Teachers’ characteristics go a long way to have impact on the performance of students. For example, among the various characteristics of a teacher are: attitude, his qualification, years of experience etc. attitude (a part of characteristics of a teacher) as a concept could be formed as a result of some kind of learning experiences. It could also be learned simply by following the example or opinion of parent, teacher or peer group. This is mimicry or imitation which also has a part to play in the teaching and learning situation.
In this respected the learner draws from the teachers’ disposition to form his own attitude which may likely affect his learning outcomes.
The study will make the educationist to see the need for qualified teacher in and the provision for relevant infrastructural facilities, instructional materials, equipment such as computers and a conducive learning environment for students to excel in their studies.
The result of this study will hopefully reveal the strength or weakness of the subject under consideration and help decision makers in either improving on the revealed lapses or enacting new solutions on the effective performance of students
It will also help the school administrators and government to recognize the areas where the students are lagging behind and to solve the problems that bring about such lapses. Furthermore, the study will be of help to parents to be acquainted with the problems facing their students at the secondary school level.
Finally, this study will be helpful to policy makers in formulating appropriate educational policy in the near future. In the same vein, Federal and State Ministry of Education and other institutions within the study location will benefit from this study by identifying the hindrances to academic performance of students in external examination, and also using such vital information to correct imbalance by proper funding of education sector.
1.7 Scope of the Study
The study on the effect of teachers qualification and working experience on academic performance of students will be carried out in some selected secondary schools in Ikere-Ekiti.
1.8 Limitation of the Study
The following limitations were discernable in the course of the study
- Inadequate funds compelled the researcher to make use of limited number of respondents.
- The validity of the data and consequently the results depend very much on the honestly and the sincerity of the respondents in making available the needed information.
- The principals and executives used for this study were considered based on the positions they occupied. Other factors like gender and personality of the respondents were not considered and they may have affected the result of this study.
- The respondents should been enlighten properly about the research before given response to the questionnaire
- The research should be limited to five selected public schools in the study area so that the researcher can cover the research within a short period.
1.9 Definition of Terms
The following operational term are used in the study to avoid misinterpretation.
- Teachers: A person who has been trained to co-ordinate the learning process in the classroom. A person who impacts knowledge to a less knowledgeable person.
- Qualification: This is the degree of goodness or worth of things or somebody used for producing more refined production.
- Experience: The art of doing particular things for a fairly long period and positively gaining from it.
- Teachers Qualities: This means the distinctive academic attainments among teachers as well as years of experience.
1.10 Organisation of Chapter
This study is divided into five chapters. Chapter one entails the background to the study, statements of the research problems, research questions, objectives of the study, research hypothesis, significance of the study, scope of the study, limitation of the study, definition of terms and organisation of chapters. Chapter two reviewed scholars view based on the purpose of the study. Chapter three consists research design, area of the study, population of the study, research instrument, validity of the instrument, reliability of the instrument, method of data collection and data analysis while chapter four shows analysis of the study . Chapter five is the concluding chapter, which includes the summary, recommendations and conclusion.
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