CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background to the Study
The school is generally accepted to be a social agent that provides the environment upon which a child may be formally educated in order to attain educational goals. Human beings have unlimited capacity to learn but may however be limited by the behaviour patterns and facilities that the school environment offers. According to Umoh (2014) nature only provides the raw materials in form of potentials but it is the environment that determines the extent of development.
Ekanem (2011) has shown that the school facilities assist teachers in making their lessons explicit to learners. Eneh and Nkang (2011) in postulation theory of cognitive development have shown that learners in schools function at the operational stage of mental development, one of the characteristics of the students at this stage of development is that they hardly remember what they learn except taught in concrete form. It is when learning experiences are made in concrete form that learners can remember what they learn and one way of making learning experiences concrete is by teaching the students with school facilities such as, library, laboratory facilities and sporting facilities among others.
Akinfolarin (2013) identified school facilities are the major factor contributing to the teaching and learning effectiveness in the school system. These include equipped laboratories and libraries. Different studies conducted by Ayodele (2010) and Vandiver (2011) showed that a positive relationship exists between the utilization of facilities in schools and academic performance of students. Similarly, Miller (2012) asserted that the teaching of sciences could be made easy and interesting for students if the facilities such as laboratory facilities and library facilities in the school are available and utilized in the teaching and learning process. It is also noted that a well prepared instruction could be destroyed by non-availability or improper utilization of school facilities by the teachers. According to Boniface (2012) utilization of laboratory resources and library facilities in teaching assists the teachers as the manager of the instructional process in the arrangement of the mechanism of the presentation and also in planning the whole instructional process and limited or completely absence of these facilities could pose a serious problem in the teaching of sciences. Again few available ones are sometimes not utilized in the teaching-learning process making teaching to be in effective.
It will be against this background that it will becomes necessary to investigate the extent to which the utilization of school facilities such as laboratory and library facilities influence the academic performance of students of Biology in secondary schools in Nsit Ibom Local Government Area.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The act of teaching is fundamentally concerned with passing ideas, skills and attitude from the teacher to the learners. In Nigeria for example, experience has shown that spoken words done in the communication of ideas are grossly ineffective and inefficient in producing desired learning outcomes. Every year, when the results of public examinations are released, there has
been mass failure in Biology. On the fore-going scholars like Ekong (2014) have emphasized that we learn and remember 10% of what we hear, 40% of what we discuss with others and as high as 80% of what we experience directly or practice. However, the question is could the mass failure be attributed to lack of school facilities to be used by teachers during the teaching and learning process? And could the availability of library facilities and laboratory facilities in schools enhance the academic performance of students in Biology. Finding answers to these questions and many more will summarizes the entire problem of this study