Classroom Variables And Academic Performance Of Secondary School Students In Biology

Classroom Variables And Academic Performance Of Secondary School Students In Biology

ABSTRACT: The study examined Classroom Variables and Academic Performance of Secondary School Students in Biology. A quasi-experimental research design was adopted for this study. The population for the study consisted of all the Senior Secondary Two (SS2) students of Biology class in 2016/2017 academic session in the study area. A sample size of two hundred (200) SS2 Biology students was used for the study. Four (4) public secondary schools were randomly selected for the study. The instrument used for data collection was Biology Achievement Test (BAT). Two research questions and two research hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. Mean and standard deviation were used to answer the two research questions while t-test statistics was used to test the two hypotheses.

Classroom Variables And Academic Performance Of Secondary School Students In Biology

Findings from the study revealed that students taught Biology in a small class size performed academically better than those taught Biology in a large class size. Also there is no significant difference in academic performance of male and female students taught Biology in small class size. It was therefore recommended among other that government should make provision for adequate and spacious classroom as well as adequate qualified teachers to take care of a manageable students and teacher ratio for effective teaching of Biology.  




1.1       Background to the Study

The word “class” in an educational setting simple means a group of learners that are sometime of the same ages, same intellectual ability and so on. In the school, a class can be seen as a group of learners that are kept in the room as a group and thought. According to National Policy on Education (2004) there are various stipulated class-sizes for various levels of education for the pre-primary the ratio is 1:25, 1:35 for the primary and 1:40 for the secondary school students.

Presently, because of the free and compulsory education in the state, class size had increased, thus making it consideration include, lager normal and small class sizes. Every classroom is made up of male and female students; these had gone a long way to examining the extent to which various class sizes had influenced the academic performance of students. In contrast, other variable in the classroom according to Akimade (2006) include, lighting, ventilation, spacing and the arrangement of desks. Each of these has a specific effect on the interaction process in the classroom.

However, in a mixed school, the separation of male from female students may create a disadvantage on how they will share their ideas. According to (Fullon 2011), the classroom still remains the main learning environment in the school although learning can still take place in other Venus. On this perspective, it is imperative that educator strive to make the classroom the best venue for students to attain their full potential in academic performance.

Lucas (2017) noted that, the physical structure of a classroom is a crucial variable in affecting moral and learning. Students motivation and involvement in the process of creating their environment can empower them develop and increase motivation of learning.

Creating a safe, positive classroom variable is the key to effective teaching and learning in the school. The classroom environment and variables interactions and the instructional approach, with the classroom being such an important place in the growth of a child, it is pertinent to understand the ways in which it affects this environment in order to receive maximum effectiveness instruction.

If schools really do play a large role in teaching the next generation how to be a successful member of the society than every precaution should be taken to make sure that the learning environment is one thing that helps students thrives, if not approached creativity or dose not promote a positive learning environment. There are many things that can affect this environment; there are physical elements such as wall chart, arrangement of desks, or resources.

According to Okoro (2012), he noted that, a better quality learning will occur in schools where suitable audio-visual materials, adequate and well equipped classrooms, laboratories, and libraries are available than in school where such facilities are either lacking or inadequate. Simon (2010) asserted that, in a class where the teacher cannot co-ordinate, plan and he will not be able to supervise teaching learning activities.

The implication is that, the student in such a class resort to cheating in order to make up for the ineffective academic programmed. Ibanga (2009) cited in Simon (2010) maintained that, ill managed educational system is bound to produce ill-fated result thereby affect the performance of student. Students in schools that are properly equipped in terms of classroom, laboratories, and adequate staffing are poorly equipped. On that note, if a teacher is motivated there will be positive impact on the students within the classroom but if a teacher is unmotivated as well. It is importance for a teacher to understand how to organize his classroom to create a better learning environment.

Classroom Variables And Academic Performance Of Secondary School Students In Biology

1.2       Statement of the Problem

It has been observed that classroom variables are major problems that affect academic performance of secondary school students. These classroom variables include, class size, classroom structures, classroom organization arrangement of desk, ventilation, spacing etc.

It has also been observed that most public secondary schools are densely populated, while classroom seem to be over-congested, because of the declaration of free and compulsory education from primary to secondary schools levels by the  state government. As a result of this the teacher lacks classroom control which in turn affects the academic performance of students.

Biology which is taught in both practically and theoretically also requires a well equipped laboratory which is also part of the classroom. The effectiveness of this teaching and learning process here depends so much on the size of the class. Presently on this context would be on the large and small class size and also the performance of male and female students with respect to Biology had been considered over the years. The study having known that, there exists a difference in the performance of students in small and large class size as reported in literature  had raised concern in the researcher to examine the extent to which classroom variables had influenced the academic performance of students in Biology in secondary schools in the study area.

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