Title page                                                                              
Approval page                                                                       
Table of contents                                                                    
Background of the study                                                                 
Statement of the study                                                           
Hypothesis of study                                                               
Purpose of study                                                                    
Significance of study                                                              
Delimitation and scope of research                                       

REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE                               
Mother – tongue defect                                                        
Reading disabilities                                                               
Intelligent quotient – genetics
Congenial word blindness                                                      
Cerebral dominance                                                                
Environmental factors in learning Literature
– in – English   
Research method                                                                   
Research design                                                                     
Procedure for data collection                                              
Data analysis                                                                        
Data analysis, results and discussion


Idowu and Bodunrin in their
study on “African philosophy and oral literature” affirmed that the fundamental
problem confronting schools is that of writing started very late, decades after
Europe had blazed the trail.  In the same vein, Akporobaro of the English
Department at the university
of Lagos lent weight on
the issue, endorsing the view that literary works on oral African literature
relied heavily on custom, tradition and historical antecedent like proverbs,
folklores, tales and stories about events, places and people.  And there was no significant record of
African literary genres and ideas on paper, hence the introduction of
literature in written form at a much later date centuries after literary
revolution had blown across Europe through
such literary giants which involves William Shakespeare, Milton Danton: R.
Davidson to mention a few of them.  The
literary style in which they wrote were reflection of European social milieu
and settings that are quite distinct from African background and orientations.
For instance, most of the Shakespeare
writings like Twelf Night, Merchant of Venice, Macbeth etc. are all products of
life – styles and social system, characterization of European would view.  Years later, the tide of events changed most
African scholars in their various literary works ventured to explore new ground
by adapting European literature to suit the prevalent African tradition and
orientation though utility of the genres, archetypes, ancestral linkages as
expressed in proverbs folklores, tales stories and sages of the African people.  The works of some eminent African scholars
like Chinua Achebe on things fall Apart and A man of the people.
Wole Soyinka on Jero’s Metamorphosis and The man Died Ngugi Wa
Thiongo on Petals of blood. 
Including a host of others are responses of this wind of change.  Quite unfortunate, there are still traces of
Western feelings and passions in their work due mainly to the use of English as
medium of expression.  African scholars
have had to dig very deep unto African custom, tradition, historical background
and general ways of life but they could not provide an alternative language
aside from the use of English as medium of expression.
All the Anglo – Saxon usages and
imports especially Grammar are cuspiously apparent in their various books and
text.  Sad as it were, this had been
about the most significant problem responsible for poor performance of
secondary school students in literature – in – English as of today.  The English language is not only foreign or
aliens but difficult to understand due to the etymology of words, their
contextual framework, prose and verses, nebulous to appreciate, moreso, complex
in form and format.  It is within this
context that any meaningful research into factors responsible for poor
performance in literature – in – English in our secondary school in general can
be carried out paripassu on interest, dependent, independent variables such as
teaching methodology, interest articulation, level of literacy awareness and
other responsible factor.  These among
others shall be focus of this research project with a case study of some
selected secondary schools in Ikere local Government Council area of Ekiti State
of Nigeria.  In other words this paper will look into
factors responsible for poor performance in Literature – in – English in some
selected secondary schools in Nigeria.

Background to the study 
The chamber’s English Dictionary
defines literature as “The art of composition in prose and verse in any
language oral given subject”.
Malcoln Ross (1986) refers to
literature as aspect of poetry and prose – its medium is language, which in
everyday use is concerned with facts opinions. 
According to her, literature can be used to increase knowledge about
things and people, and it can be used as a ground for moral discussion.  She said, “There is no reason why it should
not be so long as we do not pretend that we think, in that particular exercise,
that we are discussing literature art.
Literature projects the image of life
in the mode of visual memory.  Language
is its essential material, the sound and meaning of words, their familiar or
unusual.  Even their presentation on the
printed page, creates the illusion of life as a realm of events, completed,
lived as words formulate them and events that compose a past.
As literature creates a visual past,
drama creates a visual future.  The
literary mode is made of memory, the dramatic is the mode of destiny.  All teachers including teachers of the art
(literature) are required to specify attainment at various stages in students
progress and also to articulate their criteria assessment.
However, the language of art
(literature) despite their complexity and variety are not in principle beyond
clarification and it is this task of clarification that he would wish
philosophers and teachers now, and urgently to address, themselves upon the
success of their efforts, the future viability of the arts in the new
curriculum might very well depend says David Aspen (1991) Victor Heyfron in the
same book argued “in judging the children’s work, leaders assessors have been
sensitive to t he inter – relationship between distinctive personal vision and
standard of general artistic competence”.
The following scholars also lent
their weight in the issue and argued thus: Harold Ogborne (1987) of whilst aesthetic
assessment itself has to be a total and unified act of percipience criticism
must address particular and discrete issue if appreciation is a synthesizing
process, criticism require the practice of analysis.
He proposes three ground for
aesthetic criticism.
terms of subject matter, personal vision or conception.
terms of artistic i.e. technical accomplishment
terms of an objects, capacity of evoking, sustained enriching percipience
Malcolm Ross (1986) argued, “The arts
(literature) have to be firmly reserved from the mandane and practical subjects
from the concerns of academic study and vocational training”.
Artist create icons and the principle
upon which they conduct their work has to be free.  Assessment is a managerial mainstreaming.  It is anathema to art and must be vigorously
opposed.  John Wilson (1989) has this to
say “in this connection, we shall not get very far”.  He suggested that “until we have fully
understand the particular compulsion, our pupils are under”.  For many students grasping the concept of
art, is as grasping adequately the concept of a person and education for
appreciation begin there.
All this among others are the
controversial issues which this research project intends to find out solution
to in view of factors responsible for poor performance in literature – in –
English in Nigeria’s
secondary schools particular references to Ikere local Government Area of Ekiti
Statement of study
The problem under discussion is that
most learners that offer the subject (literature – in – English) perform poorly
at the end of it all.  And the need to
ameliorate the situation or trend of the effect is urgent. While there is the
unlienent problem of mother tongue, there are still numerous issues which
further compound the problem under review. 
There are methodological and pedagogical constraint with a view to
enhancing and enabling curriculum of study. 
There is other fundamental issues apart from language distance such as
the incongruence in curriculum framework to prevalent social; milieu, teaching
methods, learning atmosphere.  Structural
and institutional roles all of which are problem responsible for poor
performance of students in literature – in – English in our secondary.
research was predicated on the following assumption:
is a relationship between mother – tongue and the understanding of literature.
students are not responsible for their water loop at examination but the system
and circumstances inhibits their performances a great deal.
there is a great linkage between pupils background and orientation and their
ability to comprehend pieces of literary work be it prose, unseen prose, poems,
drama, music and dance.
appeal and competence can be improved and developed through the three basic
domains of learning – cognitive, affective and psycho – motor which should be
combined in order to convey meaning and make sense.
scheme of works, notes of lessons and curriculum in general cannot afford to be
irresponsive of this problem.
Purpose of study
The aim of the study was to find out
the factors responsible for poor performance in literature – in – English in Nigeria using
selected secondary schools in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State as a
case study or reference point.
It was intended to advance possible
solution to this problem from findings gathered during research.
The study was equally designed to
bring about necessary review in literary appeal and comprehension especially at
the secondary school level.
Significance of study
It was hoped that the study would be
a contribution to knowledge.  It was
equally hope that the findings would serve as an impetus of the teaching and
learning of literature – in – English.
Enhancing break through in
curriculum, syllabus, schemes of work, notes of lesson etc. regarding the
subject on our educational; system. Identify the missing link in our African
literary genre.
Delimitation and Scope of Research
The study was limited to students in
secondary schools in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State and to
literature – in – English.
Effects were be made to explore the
environment in terms of social cultural and educational requirement under which
students learn and study but on a micro context of analysis.


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