Availability And Utilization Of Laboratory Facilities And Biology Teaching In Secondary Schools

ABSTRACT: This study examined the Availability and Utilization of Laboratory Facilities and Biology Teaching in Secondary Schools.  The population of this study consisted of all the Biology teachers in all the public secondary schools in the study area. A simple random sampling technique was used to select nine (9) Biology teachers from the nine (9) secondary schools in the study area. Two research questions were formulated in line with specific objectives to guide the study a direction. The main instrument for data collection was checklist titled “Biology Laboratory Facilities Checklist (BLFC). The data generated from study were analyzed using frequency and simple percentage.

Availability And Utilization Of Laboratory Facilities And Biology Teaching In Secondary Schools

The result from the finding revealed that laboratory facilities were not adequately available to be used by the teachers in the teaching of Biology in secondary schools. Also, it was found that the few laboratory facilities were fully utilized by the teachers in the teaching of science (Biology) in secondary schools. It was recommended among others that government and all other stakeholders of education should as a matter of priority make available these facilities in the schools.



1.1   Background of the study

Education is the greatest tool for the development of any nation, the major objectives of sending our children to school is to help hem learn some basic concept, skills, knowledge and beliefs necessary for the development of some specific goals. Costalidi (2007) observed that in every level of schooling whether at the primary, secondary or tertiary level of education, there are basic facilities which make it possible for the school to attain her desire goals.

Science is doing and involves regular hands-on practical work for learners to develop scientific literacy to face global challenges. Biology being a national science can be studied both indoor and outdoor as most biological specimen are plants and animals which abound in the environment. However, some laboratory facilities may not be found outside the laboratories such as reagents, hence the need to have a well stocked laboratory with available and adequate facilities. For science teachers to play their roles in teaching Biology (Science), laboratory facilities should be available and used appropriately to improve the performance of students (Imogie, 2010).

According to Umeodurgy (2006), the process of managing organizing and making use of laboratory facility is called laboratory facilities utilization. The availability and utilization of Biology laboratory facility in teaching brings about fruitful learning, since it stimulates students’ sense as well as motivates them.  There are varieties of laboratory facilities which Biology teachers readily use to enrich learning, some of these facilities are models, preserved specimens of plants and animals, scissors, Petri-dish. Bunsen Bruner, Basins, Breakers, Hand lens, caver boards, dissecting kits etc. these facilities should be provided in quantity and quality in Biology laboratory for effective teaching and learning process.

The most effective vehicle by which the process of inquiry can be learned appears to be laboratory or a field setting where the students experience the inquiry process. Laboratory studies have also been demonstrated to be an effective means of comprehensive and application of Biology knowledge. Chukwu and Eule (2007) were of the opinion that the global change in science curriculum demands a qualitative science teaching. In view of this, importance of availability and utilization of Biology facilities cannot be over emphasized. Nwacha (2010) insisted that human and materials facilities are very important in effective teaching and learning of Biology (Sciences).

It would be pertinent to suggest that teaching approach that focuses on the theoretical aspect of a lesson alone is not the best as much as science teaching and learning is concern. It kills the interest of the students in the subject and also hinders effective understanding of the lesson. But where laboratory facilities are available, a qualified and motivated teacher will deploy the method that centers on the students such approach makes learning more concrete and real (Hofstein, 2012).

In view of this, the governments, teachers, principals, school management and education planners should endeavour to provide adequate laboratory facilities in their schools and also qualified teachers who will utilize these facilities in their cause of teaching. The utilization of laboratory facilities in the teaching and learning of Biology contribute immensely and hence promote teaching and learning of Biology in school.

Benedict (2014) showed that utilization of laboratory facilities has a significant relationship in the learning of science. Brewton (2008) analyzed the effect of utilization of laboratory facilities in the learning of science and discovered that the teaching of science concepts is more effective and meaningful when laboratory facilities are well utilized during science teaching. The availability and utilization of resources (laboratory facilities) in education brings about fruitful learning outcomes since facilities stimulate students learning as well as motivation them.

Availability And Utilization Of Laboratory Facilities And Biology Teaching In Secondary Schools

1.2   Statement of the problem 

Learning of Biology needs to be simplified, comprehensive and concrete. Extensive use of Biology laboratory facilities make Biology learning interesting, stimulating and understandable to the learners. Students’ poor performance in Biology especially at Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) level has become a source of concern to all stakeholders in education in the country and this study area in particular (Imogie, 2010).

One of the major reasons for this anomaly is the lack of or inappropriate application of laboratory facilities in the teaching and learning of Biology by secondary school teachers and students. Also, inspite of the importance of laboratory facilities to the teaching and learning process, it is observed that most of these facilities are unavailable and even the available ones are underutilized.

It is on the strength of this that the researcher deems  it necessary to examine the availability and utilization of laboratory facilities and Biology teaching  in secondary schools in the study area.

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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.