Assessment of the Resources Available for the Effective Teaching and Learning of Biology in Senior Secondary Schools

Assessment of the Resources Available for the Effective Teaching and Learning of Biology in Senior Secondary Schools

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Project Topic and Material on Assessment of the Resources Available for the Effective Teaching and Learning of Biology in Senior Secondary Schools

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  • Name: Assessment of the Resources Available for the Effective Teaching and Learning of Biology in Senior Secondary Schools
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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

Background to the Study

Education is a preparation for life. This is related to the acquisition of skills to earn a living. Today as always, the definition of education is the ever change and increasing in scope. Our schools are confronted with new pressures arising from changing needs with students; societal expectation, economic changes and technological advancement are to look into (Federal Ministry of Education, 2008).

Ali (2002) believes that the word science stands for a variety of information, abilities and operations about the natural environment. He believes that science is more concerned with various investigative processes and activities with regards to developing, acquiring, and controlling knowledge, skills, attitudes and capabilities about the natural factors of the environment. According to Aniodoh (2009), science is a body of knowledge arrived at through systematic and procedural processes based on tentative observation and experiment.

Biology as one of the science subject is defined as the study of life and structure of living things and concerns itself with the study of structure, behavior, distribution, the origin of plants and animals and their relationship with the environment. Abugu (2007) stated that biology is a natural science in which the study living organisms-plants and animals. Biology has been identified as the bedrock of understanding life, treating ailment and maintenance of ecosystem. However, it has been discovered that secondary school students have misplaced biology in their choice of subject on the basis that biology is too wide for them to cope with teacher have always been blamed for students poor performance in biology but should not be allowed to bear the whole blame alone, rather it should be looked at as a problem that has many contributory factors among which are teaching aids, students and government factors.

The West African Examination Council (WEAC) and National Examination Council (NECO) among others syllabus on biology is structured using the conceptual apparatus. It is expected that with adequate exposure to the syllabus, the students will not only acquire scientific skill and attitudes, but will also demonstrate a thorough understanding of scientific concepts and then in providing practical solutions to real life problem (Bandele, 2003). Achievement test results over the years have shown an ever decreasing gap between the performances of Biology at senior secondary school level in Makurdi Local government Area of Benue State (Onekutu and Onekutu, 2002). Available statistics from West Africa Examination Council, WAEC Chief Examiners report that WAEC May/June 2016, a total of eight hundred and seventy eight thousand and forty (878,040) candidates, representing 52.97%, obtained credits in five (5) subjects and above, including English Language and Mathematics.

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There are varieties of materials which the Biology teachers use. These resources are models, charts, preserved specimens of plants and animals, culturing equipment and microscope (Olagunju, 2000). The resources should be provided in quality and quantity in classroom for effective teaching-learning process (Umeoduagu, 2000). Josiah and Ali (2013) in an empirical study, revealed that essential facilities such as equipment like radio, television, computers, chemicals, specimens, videos tape, stave, Bunsen burners, models and charts are not available in schools. This inadequacy of teaching materials, laboratory, space, has been of serious concern to educators.

According to Ajewole and Okebukola (2000), a number of factors are said to have contributed to the students poor academic achievement in school, some of these factors include: poor study habits and lack of available resource materials, teachers ineffectiveness, the teaching method and the type of learning environment available for both the students and the teachers. From the authors view, the poor performance of students in Biology may be a reflection of the type of learning environment.  The authors stress that a host of these factors may surround students poor achievement in school which may include: poor study habits and lack of available resource materials, poor school climate, indiscipline, inadequate facilities, teachers ineffectiveness, the teaching method and the type of learning environment available for both the students and the teachers. From the authors view, the poor performance of students in primary school may be a reflection of the type of learning environment. Obaka (2005) observed that school environment may have negative influence on students academic achievement especially if such environment lacks good school climate, instructional materials, discipline, physical facilities, has poor teacher quality, type of location of school is questionable.

The decline in performance in science Technology and Mathematics (STM) may be unconnected with poor learning environment created by this state of infrastructural facilities Akinsola (2000).  Mapaderun (2002) also emphasized that the availability and adequacy of these facilities promote effects teaching and learning activities in schools while there in adequacy affects the academic have performance negatively. Several efforts have been extended by science Teachers Association of Nigeria (STAN) to train secondary school teachers on improvisation techniques in various on science subject including Biology; hence there is need to valuable how far teachers have been able to improvise instructional material for effective teaching.


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