Learning Styles and Students’ Academic Performance in Economics in Secondary Schools

Learning Styles and Students’ Academic Performance in Economics in Secondary Schools
Learning Styles and Students’ Academic Performance in Economics in Secondary Schools

Abstract: This investigated Learning Styles and Students’ Academic Performance in Economics in Secondary Schools. A review of related literature was carried out accordingly. The survey research design was adopted for the study. A population of two thousand and fifty five (2,55) students was used in the study. A sample of 100 respondents was randomly selected through the simple random sampling technique structured questionnaire was used for the collection of data. Data collection was analyzed was analyzed with Pearson Product Moment Correlation (PPMC) in the academic performance in Economics in secondary schools in Uruan Local Government.

Learning Styles and Students’ Academic Performance in Economics in Secondary Schools

The study therefore recommended among others concepts that since students’ interest and learning styles fit towards usual concepts, those concerned in transmitting the curriculum contents (teachers/educators) should encouraged them by making Economics lesson real and concrete.




1.1     Background to the Study

Learning styles has been defined as a consistent way of functioning that reflects the underlying causes of teaching behaviour (Keefe, 1987) learning style is both a characteristics which indicates how a student learns and likes to learn as well as instructional strategy informing the cognitive, context and content of learning, previous studies have reported that students’ learning performance could be improved if proper learning style dimensions could be taken into consideration when developing any learning or instructional process (Graf, Liv, & Kinshuk, 2010). This is general acceptance that lined to approach a learning situation has an impact on performance and achievement of learning outcomes.

Whilst and Perhaps because learning styles has been the focus of such a vast number of research and practitioner based studies in the area, there exist a variety of definitions, theoretical propositions, models, interpretation and measure of the construct, to some extent, this can be considered a natural consequence of extensive empirical investigation and is to be expected with any continually developing concept which proves useful in gaining understanding of such a crucial and prevailing endeavor as learning.

Learning style can also be described as a set of factors, behaviours and attitudes that facilitate learning for an individual in a given situation. Styles influence how students learn, how teacher teach, and the two interact. Each person is born with certain tendency towards particular styles, but these biological or inherited characteristics are influenced by culture, personal experiences, maturity level and development style can be considered a contextual variable or construct because what the learner brings to the learning experiences is a part of the content as well as the important features of the learners experience itself.

Each learner has distinct and consistent preferred way of perceptions, organization and retention students learn differently from each other and it has been determined that brain structure influences language structure acquisition. It has also been shown that different hemispheres of the brain certain different perceptions avenues (Keefe and Ferrell 2009) point out that learning problem are frequently not related to difficulty of the subject matter but rather to the type and level of the cognitive process required to learn the material (Dunn 2000) added that dramatic improvement in students performances in cases where learning styles have been taken into account shows that the way things are taught had a greater impact than the content covered in a courses of study. Learning styles are among the concepts that are postulated by researches to show learners differences and varied needs which can contributes positively or negatively to their level of academic performance.

The various styles that learners adopt in learning include; AUDITORY LERANING STYLES. Visual learning styles and kinesthetic learning styles, in auditory learning styles students learn best by hearing and speaking. They often talk more than the average person are very social, enjoy hearing stories and jokes understand concepts by taking about them and may excel in music in the performing arts. Also they remember names and recognize tone of voice well.

(Njoku 2008) noted that verbal reception is an effective means of study for auditory learners he added that the best learn by reading words aloud to help them remember key points; visual learning styles are the one student absorb information by seeing, students with this learning style enjoy reading; having good hand writing are very detail oriented, organized and have a keen awareness of colour and shapes. They are the students that remember peoples faces better than their names and they often need to maintain eye contact with a person to concentrate on a conversation (Dana 2000) observes that diagrams, mine maps, word webs and other form of graphic organizers help the visual learner to get the good form of instruction. Research has shown that visual learning style is ace of the best style of learning. Base on a graphical way of working with ideas and presentation of information.

These styles naturally and confidently. They uses visual tools combining pictures, text, numbers and spoken words to develop vocabulary, word recognition comprehension reasoning and problem solving skills (James 2005) moreover, some of these studies did not provide empirical evidence of variables and dependent variable academic performance especially when the classroom variable are taken together or combined it is in order to fill this gap that provoke this study to ascertain the classroom variables (class size, teachers qualification and classroom physical environment) as it effects secondary school students as a knowledgeable citizen of society.

Learning Styles and Students’ Academic Performance in Economics in Secondary Schools

1.2     Statement of Problem

With the central low achievement in Economics, it is evident that learners have not yet learned how to learn or discovered their preferred learning styles for different materials or content in this subject. Also, teachers have not understood the diversity of their learners in a typical classroom, and they keep of embracing the same traditional teaching styles in every context. In consequence, students because bored and inattentive in class, do poorly on test, get discouraged about the subject, the curriculum and themselves and in some worse cases drop out of school. Teachers confronted by poor grades, unresponsive or hostile learners, poor attendance and dropouts, know something is not working, they may become overly critical of their students (making things even worse) or begin to wonder if they are in the right profession.

Learning styles theories have been cited as an effective means of helping teachers recognize the incredibly diverse needs learning brings into the classroom as well as helping the learners discover how they learn best for optimum academic.

In addition, these theories provide a frame work that enable teachers to reap the very best from their learners through developing a variety of instructional methodologies to benefit all learners, and more importantly helping the student learn how to learn and consequently achieve better academic results. It is therefore imperative to understand learning style performance among the learners and how they relate to academic achievement so as to develop effective and successful learners.

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Peter Hezekiah Lawson (Sir Pee). The CEO of onlineproject.com.ng. A reputable researcher, Web Developer, ICT Instructor and a publisher of many research works in Education.