Factors associated with mass failure of students in Financial Accounting

Factors associated with mass failure of students in Financial Accounting
Background of the Study
Financial Accounting is a business subject offered by students in Nigeria secondary schools.  According to Udoh (2003), Financial Accounting is a specialized area of instruction that deals directly with business skills and techniques, business knowledge and facts, others include business understanding, economic understanding, business attitudes and appreciation necessary to understand and adjust to the economic and social institution called ―business‖. Financial Accounting is a process involving gathering, sorting, recording, classifying, verifying, measuring and summarizing financial transactions and subsequently interpreting and communicating information to the owners and users of accounting information for decision making.
According enjoy an unalloyed, uncompromising and unfettered priority in Nigeria. If there is any misgiving about this assertion, it is not with accounting education.It is the danger that beneficiaries will regard accounting education as panaceas for all their problems. Where expectation become unfulfilled due to bad planning, then frustration and discontent will set in an accounting profession which had begun a lodestar, might and up as a mirage this is one way of starting the oblivious fact that disillusionment can set in through bad planning and negligence.Non the less arts oriented subjects can survive even within the context of bad planning but social science taught in a similar situation will create an unfathomable discontentment.
Accounting has been defined as a system of principles and techniques, which permits the recordings, analysis, interpretation and communication of financial information as an aid to managerial decision – making.The recording phase of accounting is commonly called Book – keeping the analysis, classification and systematic recording of the interpretative phase is called accountancy the professional aspect of accounting practice.A study of business accounting is therefore concerned with the process of measurement and communication, both of business income and the financial position of an entry.
Accounting is a subject that is offered in Nigeria secondary schools, polytechnics and universities accounting subjects includes management accounting, financial accounting, cost accounting, public sector accounting, taxation and auditing.
The bedrock of accounting is an understanding of the underlying principles and an appreciation of the techniques and skills necessary for their application. Unlike the natural science, accounting is not based on fundamental laws or absolute percepts. Rather accounting principles are generalization which have evolved over many years through trial and error and which accounting practice can be evaluated.
Thus in their widest definition, accounting principles uncooperative postulates rules, conventions, practices and procedures which have been adopted as a general guide to action by the accountancy profession is therefore essentially an attempt to inculcate these, basic fundamental principles and the acquisition of skills and the techniques in the application of these principles the professed aim of accounting studies is to provide the student with the knowledge and skills required not only for the business world but also for other social situations. As it teaches ethnical behaviour in personal and business affairs, such behaviour include punctuality, honestly, hard work and sanctity of human life etc.
Accounting is logically reasoning in the form of a set of broad principles that are capable of providing a frame of reference by which accounting practice can be evaluated and realization of these objectives can only be attested through the qualification of the teacher and his experience or by way of impacting knowledge skill, it must train the student to be adopted, it must extend the horizon of his interest and must also develop his personality of which some of the aims designed to be achieved.
Notwithstanding the importance of this subject in our everyday life, we still fund from available statistics that a large percentage of the present day student population perform poorly in Financial Accounting.However, the aim of this study therefore is to investigate factors associated with mass failure of students in Financial Accounting in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State.
Statement of the Problems
The issue of students’ poor performance in the secondary schools has been a frequent issue in Nigerian secondary schools in which Financial Accounting is no exception.  Akinsolu (2010) reported that student‘s achievements do not match the government and parental investments using WAEC and NECO results analysis.  Akinsolu(2010) maintains that all stakeholders in education are concerned about why the educational system has not been improving as demonstrated poor results at secondary school level.
Financial Accounting which is the central focus of the  researcher  has recorded low performance and the objectives of introducing Financial Accounting in Nigerian secondary schools according to National Examination Council (NECO 2004), are: to enable senior secondary school students appreciate the basic rules, functions and principles of accounting, to  lay proper foundation for further study of accountancy and allied courses at higher level and to    enable the students understand basic accounting principles, practice  and their applications to modern business activities, all these objectives have not been realized.
From previous performance, it seems the aims and objectives of offering financial accounting in Nigerian secondary schools have been defeated. For example, West Africa Examination Council (2013) analysis of performance in Financial Accounting in West African Senior Secondary Certificate Examination in 2008, 2009, and 2010 revealed 52.48%, 58.38% and 51.21% percentage failure in Financial Accounting.  Also, Federal Ministry of Education (2015) gave the breakdown of performance in Accounting at credits level in NECO from 2013 to 2014 in 102 Federal Government Colleges in Nigeria as follow:  48%, 51%, 47% and 45% respectively. Also Emaikwu (2015) revealed that WAEC results May/June 2005-2014 in Accounting showed the percentage of failures nationwide as 68.24%, 74.15%, and 80%, 83.09%, 88.01%, 90.20% and 93% respectively.   The mass failure in Financial Accounting may be attributed to many factors which are now hidden pending investigation; could it be poor methods of teaching?  Could it be incompetence on the part of teachers? Could it be laziness on the part of students?  Could poor students’ academic performance be associated with socio-economic status of parents or fall in general standard of education?
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study is to examine the factors associated with mass failure of students in Financial Accounting in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State. The study intends to specifically;

  1. assess the influence of teachers’ teaching methods on secondary school students’ poor academic performance in Financial Accounting.
  2. investigate the influence of students’ interests on their poor academic performance in Financial Accounting.
  3. ascertain the influence of parental level of education on secondary school students’ poor academic performance in Financial Accounting.
  4. determine the influence of parental level of occupation on secondary school students’ poor academic performance in Financial Accounting.
  5. examine the influence of parental social status on secondary school students’ academic performance in Financial Accounting.

Significance of the Study
Finding from an authentic study of this nature are expected to contribute immensely to our educational and vocational or personnel policies the results with enhance the theories and practice of education especially in such areas as measurement and evaluation guidance and counseling.
Accounting studies is very important in man’s everyday life particularly in presenting and interpreting information used for formulating strategy, planning and controlling activities, decision taking and optimizing the use of resources. The needs for students to distinguish basic principles from rules of procedure so that accepting without question what are infact more practice will not dull their critical faculties that handed down over years. All these have a practical as well as financial side to them.
Our daily activities are remotely connected with business such as financial management, bakery hotel management and instructional management and project evaluation. All these have financial implications, professionals like the cashiers, accountants secretaries cannot function without the knowledge of business and accounting them. It is therefore imperative to study the causes of students’ poor performance in accounting studies in Enugu state University of science and technology Enugu. since the can help in correcting the negative attitude towards the subject and can also contribute its quota to the success of the student’s in our university. Accounting studies also contributes to all round education of the child. It improves competence in small and in understanding of the accounting progression and business world.
To find out the causes of students poor performance in accounting subjects at universities, the following questions were formulated.

  1. Does the academic qualifications of teacher affect the teaching of accounting studies in colleges universities and polytechnics?
  2. Does non-availability of instructural gadgets as a significant determinant on teachers teaching methods
  3. Does the allocation of time affect the student’s ability to understanding and retain the topic taught?
  4. Do assignment when given to students help them to improve their learning ability and understand better the topic taught?
  5. Does the negative attitude of students towards the subject affect their ability to understand and retain the topic taught?
  6. Does questions when asked by students help them to improve their learning ability and understand better the topic taught?

The formulation of research hypothesis in research work serve as a powerful bacon that light the path for the research work.
Therefore, the researcher applied Null and ALTERNATIVES HYPOTHESIS in order to make a reasonable decision.
The null hypothesis which is always affirmations to the question is denoted by HO while the alternative hypothesis and is denoted by H1 as shown below.
Ho:      Students performance in accounting subjects is very poor.
Hi:       Students performance in accounting subjects is not very poor
Ho:      Students poor performance in accounting subjects is as a result of lack of qualified lecturers.
Hi:       Students poor performance in accounting is not as a result of lack of qualified lecturers.
Ho:      Students poor performance in accounting subjects is as a result of lack of infrastructural.
Hi:       Students poor performance in accounting subjects is not as a result of lack of infrastructural.
1.5         SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This research work only covers the cause of students poor performance in accounting subjects at university using Enugu state university of science and technology (ESUT) as a case study and proffer suggested solution to students poor performance in accounting subjects.
The research topic has some key works, which call for treatment before any thing else.
Accounting studies: this is a subject that skills and competence required for use in accounting firm.
Accounting: Is the act of recording, classifying and summarizing in a systematic manner and in terms of money, transactions and events which are in part at least of a financial character and interpreting the result there off.
Method or techniques: Ways or approach by which a desired purpose is achieved.
Student: A learner that assimilates what is taught by the teacher.
Teacher/lecturer: A person that impact knowledge in another person thereby causes a change in behaviours.

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