PERSONAL FACTOR AS PREDICTORS OF ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE AMONG SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS
The project was designed to find out the personal factor as predictors of academic performance among secondary students; a case study of Ikere local government area of Ekiti State. The objectives of the study are to; determine if inadequate textbook predict students’ academic performance among Secondary Schools; determine if inadequate numbers of teachers predict academic performance among Secondary Schools; determine if teacher attitude to teaching predicts academic performance among Secondary Schools and determine if inappropriate teaching method predict academic performance among Secondary Schools. Research questions and hypotheses were also raised and were tested with Chi-square at 0.05 level of significant. From the study, it was revealed that inadequate textbooks, inadequate numbers of teacher, poor attitude of the teaching and inappropriate use of teaching method are the major factors affecting good academic performance of students. It was further recommended that there should be provision of adequate textbooks for students and the Ministry of Education and indeed all stakeholders in the education sector should work towards the provision of adequate physical facilities and instructional materials, so that students could enjoy some privileges and exposures like their counterparts in other schools.Appropriate school authorities should enable to provide a conducive school environment that has good climate for effective teaching and learning. Such environment should be managed well, students treated fairly by teachers and happy to be in school as well as feel they are a part of the school.
Background to the Study
The issue of poor academic performance of students in Nigeria has been of much concern to the government, parents, teachers and even student themselves. The quality of education not only depends on the teachers as reflected in the performance of their duties, but also in the effective coordination of the school environment (Ajao, 2001). Education is an essential factor for effective development of any country like Nigeria. The western education adopted by Nigeria is highly based on individualism, socio-economic and internationalization which are geared towards national development. Ada (2005), one of the major obstacles to the development of secondary schools in Nigeria is the persistent poor academic achievement of students. Based on this fact, people believe that the standard of education is falling in general. Poor academic performance as recorded in recent years was so great that many students fall short of the requirements necessary for admission into tertiary institutions.
According to Ajewole and Okebukola (2000), a number of factors are said to have contributed to the students’ poor academic achievement in school. The authors stress that a host of these factors may surround students’ poor achievement in school which may include: poor study habits and lack of available resource materials, poor school climate, indiscipline, inadequate facilities, teachers’ ineffectiveness, the teaching method and the type of learning environment available for both the students and the teachers among others.
Perkins, (2013) asserted that students’ outcome and academic success is greatly influenced by the type of school they attend. Environmental factors include school structure, school composition and school climate. The school as an institutional environment that sets the parameters of a students’ learning experience. As schools are faced with more public accountability for student academic performance, school level characteristics are being studied to discover methods of improving achievement for all students. Considerable research has been conducted on teaching skills, climate, socio-economic conditions, and student achievement. Depending on the environment, school can either open or close the doors that lead to academic performance.
The school is a social and learning agent that provides the government upon which a child may be formally educated in order to attain educational goals. Human being have unlimited capacity to learn, but may however be limited by the behaviour patterns and facilities that the immediate environment offer. According to Umoh (2016) nature only provides the raw materials in form of potentials, but it is the environment that determines the extent of development.
Low academic performance has been on the high side in the Nigeria education system and cannot be over emphasized as it has eaten deep into the quality of students produced and the required quality of individual for various institutional need of the country. In accessing the cause effect of the level of student academic performance, the researcher considered some variable of the school as those instruments that could tailor the level of student academic performance.
However, school variable according to Ajayi (2011) is a school’s physical surrounding , which includes the classrooms, school location, libraries, technical, workshops, laboratories, teachers quality, school management, teaching methods, peers, buildings and school type. They are variable that affect students’ academic achievement either positively or negatively. Hence, the personal factors remain an important area that should be managed to enhance students’ academic performance. George (2010) added that the extent to which student learning could enhance depend on their location within the school compound, the structure of their classroom, availability of instructional facilities and accessories. It is believed that a well-planned school will gear up expected outcomes of education that will facilitate good social, political and economic emancipation, effective teaching and learning process and academic performance of the student.
Thus, for learning to take place and the performance of student enhanced, the school must be stimulating and encouraging. The school environment must be inviting or welcoming, conducive and accommodating for adequate and effective learning to take place. According to Grant (2005), school buildings furnished and well equipped for habitation. As dilapidating buildings, lacking mental stimulating facilities that are characterized with low or no seating arrangement will also be destructive to students’ academic achievement. It has been proved that students’ are taught in stimulating environment with laboratory equipment, rich instructional aids, picture and are allowed to demonstrate using relevant instructional materials are better that those trained under theoretical and canopy of abstraction.
However, Marsden (2005) opined that the extent to which students learning could be enhanced depends on certain factors (school variables) such as school facilities, school location, teachers qualification, class size and school type. It is believed that a well-planned school with these variables will gear up expected outcomes of education that will facilitate good social, political and economic emancipation effective teaching and learning process and academic performance of the students. School facilities are equipment and materials used in facilitating the teaching learning process. An effective school facility is responsive to the changing programs of educational delivery, and at a minimum should provide a physical environment that is comfortable, safe, secure, accessible, well illuminated, well ventilated and aesthetically pleasing (Bello 2011). These facilities include, a well-equipped library, a well-equipped laboratory, seats, tables, chalkboards, lighting, charts, maps and computers with internet connection the facility also includes furnishing, materials and suppliers. Equipment and information technology, as well as various aspects of the building grounds, namely, athletic fields, playgrounds, areas for outdoor learning and vehicular access and parking. Marsden (2005) reported that safe and orderly classroom environment (aspect of instructional space), school facilities (accessories) were significantly related to students’ academic performance in schools. Poor maintenance and ineffective ventilation systems lead to poor health among students as well as teachers’ which leads to poor performance and higher absentee rates (Marsden, 2005). These factors can adversely affect students’ behaviour and lead to higher levels of frustration among teachers, and poor learning attitude among students.
A number of other factors relating to examination bodies, government, parents, teachers and students have also been identified. Uwadiae (2000) attributed the poor performance of students in WASSCE to a lack of adequate preparation, shortage of qualified teachers, inadequate teaching materials, lack of good school environment and infrastructural facilities, inability to understand questions requiring high level thinking and shallow answers to questions due to poor command of English language. Government was expected to create an enabling environment for effective teaching and learning to take place through the provision of necessary infrastructure, facilities and qualified teacher manpower. The poor performance was also laboratories, libraries, as well as population explosions in schools
In addition to this, studies carried out by Onwioduokit in Adeyemi and Adeyemi (2014) Olarewaju and in Adeyemi and Adeyemi (2014) showed that insufficient manpower, lack of concentration during lessons, lack of commitment and motivation to work, lack of equipment, poor attitudes of students, poor understanding of concepts, inability to study well, neglect of assignment and pleasure seeking attitude contribute to low academic achievement.
In the same vein, Bulus (2001) observed that the problem of mass failure in public examinations is a matter of grave concern in the present millennium. Ukeji in Adeyemi and Adeyemi (2014) was also of the opinion that in Nigeria, decay in public examinations is particularly grave, debilitating, degenerating, deteriorating and dehumanizing.
Ojerinde in Adeyemi and Adeyemi (2014) attributed the causes of low academic achievement in schools to factors such as: school environment, home background, economic, political and intellectual capability, social and entry qualification. Furthermore, records of students’ poor academic performance in some colleges of education are not encouraging. No matter how well conceived a country’s developmental plans may be, they would be thwarted due to low academic achievement. Indeed, poor academic performance and high failure rate are inimical to the development of any society. It is on the basis of above, that this study is carried out to examine if school or institutional factors predict students’ academic performance in secondary schools.
Statement of the Problem
Academic attainment is an important parameter measuring success in students’ examinations and reports have shown that success or high academic achievement has become a herculean task to accomplish by student in recent times in secondary and tertiary levels of education in Nigeria (Essien 2012). The influence of personal factors on academic achievement of student has been an issue of concern to all stakeholders in education. This is evident in the rate of mass failure of students in both internal and external examinations as revealed by researcher studies.
Despite the Ekiti State government effort towards the provision and renovation of infrastructures in primary school, students’ performance in both internal and external examinations such as National Common Entrance and State Common Entrance Examinations into primary schools is still very low and below expectations. Several research studies have identified other factors such as school climate, instructional materials, discipline and physical facilities, teacher quality, type of location of school, class size, and over population of students in classroom as being responsible for poor academic achievements of students. However, most of these studies were conducted in different environment rather than the environment of the present study. It became necessary to find out the causes of such poor performance in our secondary schools. Though, these poor performances in our secondary schools have been attributed to a lot of indicators as reported by various writers, authors and researchers. The interest of this research has been activated by the fact that all the effort made by Ekiti State government to improve the academic performance of secondary school students’ has not yielded the desired result. It is on this note that this study is carried out to examine those schools factors that predicts students’ academic performance in the study area.
Purpose of the study
The main purpose of the study is to find out the personal factors as predictors of academic performance among secondary school students in Ikere local government area of Ekiti State.
The specific purposes are
- To determine if inadequate textbook predict students’ academic performance among Secondary Schools in Ikere Local Government area of Ekiti State.
- To determine if inadequate numbers of teachers predict academic performance among Secondary Schools in Ikere Local Government area of Ekiti State
- To determine if teacher attitude to teaching predicts academic performance among Secondary Schools in Ikere Local Government area of Ekiti State.
- To determine if inappropriate teaching method predict academic performance among Secondary Schools in Ikere Local Government area of Ekiti State
Significance of the study
It is hoped that this study will provide information for parents, educators and school administrations to reflect upon various factors that help students in achieving their academic goals. In so doing they can investigate the possibility of introducing those factors to their school which may consequently lead to changing student’s educational outcomes in school. This study will also be significant because the findings of the study will also assist school administrators and curriculum planners to develop strategies that would reduce negative effects of poor learning environment on academic achievement of student in secondary schools.
The findings of this shall also be useful to school proprietors, government school administrators and parents in understanding the influence of personal factors on academic achievement in secondary schools. This study will also be of importance to them the effect of personal factors on their academic achievement. Finally, the findings of the study will act as a reference point to their interest scholars interested in this area of research.
The following research questions guides the study
- To what extent does inadequate textbook predict the academic performance among Secondary School students in Ikere Local Government area of Ekiti State?
- To what extent does inadequate number of teachers predict the academic performance among Secondary School students in Ikere Local Government area of Ekiti State?
- To what extent does teacher attitude to teaching predict the academic performance among Secondary Schools in Ikere Local Government area of Ekiti State?
- To what extent does an inappropriate teaching method predict academic performance among Secondary Schools in Ikere Local Government area of Ekiti State?
The following null hypotheses were raised and tested at 0.05 level of significance
H01 there is no significant difference between inadequate textbook and academic performance of students.
H02 there is no significant difference between inadequate numbers of teachers and academic performance of students.
H03 there is no significant difference between teacher attitudes to teaching and academic performance of students.
H04 there is no significant difference between inappropriate teaching method and academic performance of students.
Scope of the Study
This research work is restricted to senior secondary schools students in Ikere Local Government Area of Ekiti State. There are Ten (10) secondary schools in the aforementioned local government area. However, as a result of time frame for this research work, all the ten (10) senior secondary schools would be sampled from different locations within the local government area, where the researcher believes that authentic data could be collected for this research.
Definition of Terms
Personal Factors: These are thingslike student attitude, learning environment, home factors which influence or affect the performance of students depending on their availability and their effective use.
Achievement: This refers to the performance of students in examinations.
Urban School:These are schools located in places where there is availability of modern conveniences like good and accessible roads, pipe-borne water, electricity etc.
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