Abstract: This study was to examine the Influence of Teaching Techniques on Academic Performance of Students in Economics. The study was a descriptive survey research design. The study targeted all SS1 – SS3 Economic students in all the five (5) public secondary schools in the area with the total number of one thousand nine hundred and ninety eight (1,998) students offering Economics. Simple random sampling technique was employed to select the sample from the target population. This resulted in a sample of five (5) schools with a sample of 200 SS1 and SS2 students. Economics Achievement Test (EAT) was the instrument for data collection. Meanwhile, all the test scripts administered were duly collected; the data obtained were subjected to independent t-test.
Influence Of Teaching Techniques On Academic Performance Of Students In Economics
1.1 Background to the Study
The challenge of teaching is to create an experience that involves the students and support their own thinking explanation, evaluation, communication and application of the scientific models needed to make sense of these experiences. Construction is a theory that suggests that learners construct knowledge out of their experiences which is associated with pedagogical approaches that promote teaching by doing or active teaching (Afolabi & Akinbola, 2009). Constructivist teaching focuses on independent teaching, creativity, critical thinking and problem solving. And it is based on the fact that skills and knowledge acquisition are not by passive and rote teaching but involves active participation of the learners through knowledge construction, hands-on and minds-on activities (Ndioho, 2007).
A psychological theory of knowledge argues that human construct knowledge and meaning from their experiences. Active involvement of students is emphasized, hence, knowledge last long in their memory. Constructivism so to say, is not a concept; it has its root in philosophy and has been applied to sociology and anthropology as well as cognitive psychology and education.
According to Cheek (2000), the first constructivist philosopher, commented in a treatise that one only knows something if it can explain it. Kurt & Becker (2004) further elaborated this idea by asserting that human beings are not passive recipients of information but as learners actively connect it to previously assimilated knowledge and make it theirs by constructing their own interpretation.
In Nigeria and Akwa Ibom State in particular, a lot of resources have been invested in teaching of social sciences, yet, the performance of the students in the social science have continued to be poor and discouraging (Ukpong, 2003). The situation can be described as nostalgic and hopeless and perhaps, should be replaced with more reasonable curriculum relevant and appropriate to the society. Ekpo (2006) bemoaned the awful performance of secondary school economics students in examination in Akwa Ibom State, and laments that, of the 5,033 candidates of Akwa Ibom State that sat for the WAEC in 2005, only 1,391 passed the examination just credits representing 20% of the total number of those who sat for the examination and out of those who passed just 514 candidates had credit in English, Economics, Government, Mathematics and Accounting.
Kneller (2001) cited in Vikoo (2003) defined inquiry teaching techniques as “the controlled or directed transformation of an indeterminate situation into one that is so determinate”. Guided inquiry is where the teacher structures the task to be performed and supplies the procedures to be followed in solving the observed problem. Here, the teacher acts as a guide, a leader, a resource person, and internal sensor and a motivator to further inquires. This is in line with Nwagbo (2008) who explains that in the guided inquiry mode which is an example of constructivists, teaching is an approach to enquiry, on the other hand, the teacher provides illustrative materials for students to study on their own. Leading questions are then asked by the teacher to enable students think and provide conclusion through the adoption of the process of social science.
Nwagbo (2008) believes that if the learners are allowed to discover his own generalization and draw conclusions from them, he may then be better prepared to make wider applications of the materials learned. According to Ugwuany (2002), a learner is active in discovery teaching and provides for individuals differences as wells as makes the process of teaching to be self-sequenced, goal-directed with the goal perceived and the pace well-determined.
Research by Caprico (2002) indicates that better exam grades were obtained by students taught using discovering teaching techniques by teachers. Supporting this findings, Saigo (2001) concluded that “the guided inquiry teaching and teaching techniques has been found to slightly influences students’ achievement in a positive way” Kurt and Somchai (2004) in their own construction research study teaching also found out that students used for their own study participated more in the classroom activities and gain in content knowledge when a constructivist approaches was used. Brad (2000) in his study found that students in the guided inquiry group showed higher degree from generic to specific concepts so that learners from cognitive structures and erode new information. The expository approach is a teacher-peripheral teaching approach in which the teacher delivers a pre-planned lesson to the students with or without the use of instructional materials.
Gbamanja (2003) observes that in using this approach, the teacher talk about Economics while the students read about Economics. However, the modern expository approach involves more than talking and reading about Economics, for it allows some interaction between the teacher and the students in terms of asking and being asked questions on the topic of discussion.
Obviously, the traditional teacher as information giver and textbook guided classroom has failed to bring about the desired outcome of producing thinking students (Yound & Collins, 2003). A much heralded alternative is to change the focus of the classroom from teacher dominated to student centred or actively based teaching of academic achievement than student in the traditional (lecture) instruction group in all conditions. In a research study by Gatlin (2001), he found that there was no significant difference in student’s scores at the post test between students of the guided inquiry group and traditional (lecture) group. He stated that students scores of those who received the discovery approach showed a slight decrease on the delayed post-test while students taught using the tradition (lecture) approach showed a greater decrease overtime. It can be said that students taught using traditional (lecture) means, who rely on memorization to pass test, over time often do not remember much of the information learned. That is retention of information is low with students taught with lecture method of teaching and teaching.
Influence Of Teaching Techniques On Academic Performance Of Students In Economics
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Over the years, the investigation of the factors that influence academic performance of students have attracted the interest and concerns of teachers, counselors, psychologist, researchers and school administrators in Nigeria. This is because of the public outcry concerning the low standard of education in the country and the product productions of graduates with little technical know-how resulted in serious setbacks to the industrial development of the nation.
Investigations of these factors have produced several findings by researchers; some have attributed the cause of poor academic performance to a combination of personal and educational factors. The link between teaching and its techniques used the types of teaching techniques that can boost the academic performance of students. The techniques of teaching strategy that can make the students to achieve knowledge faster. Due to the aforementioned problems of poor academic performance and the gaps created by previous researchers in the area of the study, This researcher is challenged and consequently sought to conduct a study on the teaching techniques and academic performance of students in Economics.