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EFFECT OF STUDENTS’ ABILITIES, CLASS SIZE AND ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT IN GOVERNMENT


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EFFECT OF STUDENTS’ ABILITIES, CLASS SIZE AND ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT IN GOVERNMENT


ABSTRACT

The study set out to examine the effect of students’ abilities, class size and academic achievement in government in Badagry Local Government Area of Lagos State. In order to carry out the study, three hypotheses were formulated and data collected through a self-designed questionnaire and Government Achievement Test. The sample used for the study consisted of 200 students and 20 teachers selected from the senior secondary schools in Badagry Local Government Area of Lagos State. The data collected were analyzed using chi-square and t-test analysis. The study revealed that there is a significant relationship between teachers poor attendance to classes and students’ academic achievements (X2cal > X2tab, P < 0.05, df  =  9). The study also revealed that there is significant relationship between students’ inability to ask questions for clarification in a large Government classes and  their academic performance in Government (X2cal > X2tab, P < 0.05, df  =  6). The study also revealed that there is a significant relationship between inadequate conduct of tests and assignments by the teachers and the  students’ academic achievement in Government (X2cal > X2tab, P < 0.05, df  =  3).  The result obtained revealed that students’ abilities, class – size are ttthe major causes of low academic performance in government (t-testcal > t-testcal, P < 0.05, df  =  198).

Based on the findings, it was recommended among other things that the number of students’ in a class should not exceed 30, so that there would be adequate monitoring of the students.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1     Background to the Study

It is generally believed that students' ability towards a subject is a key factor that determines the academic achievement of such students in that particular subject. In other words high ability level towards a subject, result to good academic achievement in that subject. While low ability level towards a subject and government in particular, result to bad achievement in government. Also, the size of a class is an important factor that determines the level of academic achievement of students in government class. In recent times, the size of a class has tremendously increased from the conventional 35-40 to about 90-100. This of course is not a welcome development, because it has reduced the level of academic turnout which has an adverse be referred to as an educational tool that can be used to describe the average number of students per class in a school. Hoffman (2008) describes it as the number of students per teacher in a class.

Kedney (2009) stated that it is a tool that can be used to measure the performance of the education system. In relation to size, Dean (2004) compared class size in some countries and found that Turkey, Norway and Netherlands had class-sizes of 20 or more: the UK, USA, Japan, Canada and Ireland had class- sizes of between 15and 20, while France, Sweden, Denmark, Australia, Italy and Belgium had class- sizes of below 15. Nwadiari (2000) argued that the higher the class -sizes, the lower the cost of education. He contended however, that most classrooms are overcrowded spreading resources thinly and thereby affecting the quality of education. Commeyras (2003) however, reported that effective teaching seems impracticable for teacher having large class- sizes of 75,100 or more. In terms of outcomes of performance, schuitz (2003) classified the outcome of education into two categories from the economic point of view. There are consumption and investment. Conh (2005) referred to the consumption aspect as that related to benefits derived by students. He regarded the investment component as including a variety of out puts related to the enhancement of an individuals or society productive skills. Thus, Blaug (2003) argued that the earning of those who benefited from it. There is a tremendous increase in the average size of class these days in Nigeria from what it used to be according to Okoro (2005) 35-40 students to 90-100 and more. Ezewu and Okeye (1982), this increase however as a result of the population of education through the Universal Basic Education (UBE) 1999.

There is open enrolment in schools without a corresponding provision of adequate infrastructure. Teachers are in short supply, classrooms are not enough funds to manage the greatly expanded school which collapse after a short while. Every Nigerian child is entitled to education indeed it is describe that every Nigeria child should be educated; otherwise he becomes a weak link in another wise scrunching. To this end, it is very necessary for the teachers to know their students personally. This is almost impossible because of the present stage which a single teacher handles nearly 90-100 students in a class. The student is denied such that the teacher can cooperate with students to harness his or her interest, ambition and aptitudes into the proper course that would lead to the most suitable career.

Given such situation, the best the teacher could do is to stand in front of the class and deliver lectures about individual differences are thrown away. They give up in the face of such obstacle. Little or no attention is paid to student -teacher or student -student interaction. This increase poor academic performance in test and examination. However, students’ abilities in a lower class can be hindered by the size of the classroom due to the above discussed issue, there is need therefore to carry out a search on the effect of students’ abilities, class-size and academic achievement in government.

1.2     Statement of the Problem

This study specially investigated the understated problems. Overcrowding of classroom which hinders teacher's movement around the classroom as such reducing room for individual attention to students. Inaccurate continuous assessment records due to large class- size which could lower academic achievement of students in government class. Inadequate weekly test and assignment conduction due to marking loads involved, which could also affect the academic achievement of students in government class. Noisy classroom as a result of over-population which discourage teachers and students alike from attending classes because of high rate of undisciplined evident in a large class-size.

1.3     Purpose of the Study

The purposes of the study are as follow:

1.     To investigate, if not being able to ask question for clarification in a crowded classroom could affect academic achievement.

2.     To analyses the effects of teachers inaccessibility to students for attention and assistance on their academic achievement.

3.     To examine how inaccurate continuous assessment records could affect students’ academic achievement.

4.     To find out if teaching a large class could make a teacher develop carefree attitude on the job.

1.4     Significant of the Study

The findings will help the government and other researcher to understand the causes of low academic achievement in an overcrowded government classroom, and its effects on students' abilities. It will also help the government to take appropriate measure in solving the problem of low academic achievement of students in government.

1.5     Research Questions

Specifically, this study answers the following questions.

1.                 What does poor attendance to class by teachers and students as a result of large class-size have on students' abilities which in turn have effect on student's academic achievement?

2.                 What way does inability to ask questions in a large class-size for clarification affect the students' abilities which in turn have effect on academic of such students in government?

3.                 What are the implication of inadequate conduct of test and assignment on students' abilities which in turn have effect on students' academic achievement in government.

1.6     Research Hypotheses

The following hypotheses were tested.

Ho1 : There is no significant relationship between teachers' poor attendance to class and students; academic achievement in government.

Ho2:  There is no significant relationship between students' inability to ask for clarification in a large class-size and their academic achievement in government.

H03: There is no significant relationship between inadequate conduct of test and assignment by teachers and students' academic achievement in government.

1.7     Scope of the Study

The scope of this study covers ten secondary schools in Badagry Local Government Area of Lagos State owned and financed by Lagos State government.

1.8     Limitation of the Study

This study was limited by area of coverage or population sample, time factor and easy accessibility of information from the respondents.

1.9     Operational Definitions of Terms

Students: by students in this study, we refer to all school pupils in Ojo Local Government Area of Lagos State.

Teachers: all government teachers in Senior Secondary Schools in Ojo Local Government Area of Lagos State.

Class: A four wall building that houses students and teachers for teaching and learning process.

Large Class Size: classes that have students ranging from 70 - 100 per class.

Academic achievement: The level of useful turnout and their impact in the society at large

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