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INFLUENCE OF TEACHING ABILITY ON STUDENTS’ ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS

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                                                       Abstract

This study was carried out to examine the influence of teaching ability on student’s academic performance in secondary schools. Three hundred principals and teachers from selected secondary schools in Kaduna Educational Zone participated in the study. Four research questions and hypotheses were generated for the study and simple percentage statistical method was used to analyse the data gathered with the influence of teaching ability on student’s academic performance questionnaire. The data collected was tabulated and analyzed appropriately. The statistical procedure used in this research work to analyze the data collected was the simple percentage. Findings from the study show that there is significant relationship between teachers’ competence and students’ academic performance. Students taught by qualified teachers performed significantly better than those taught by unqualified teachers. Also students taught by experienced teachers performed significantly better than those taught by inexperienced teachers. It was recommended among others that principals should ensure that the potentials of the teachers are well harnessed and utilized to reflect the true picture of their quality in the academic performance of students.

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                                                  CHAPTER ONE

                                                INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the Study

Effective learning in every institution of learning would demand an effective teaching to guide the efforts of the learners. A teacher’s teaching ability needs to be very high in order for meaningful teaching and learning to take place. The quality of education of a nation could be determined by the teaching abilities of her teachers. The most important factor in improving students’ academic achievement in school is by employing seasoned qualified teachers in all schools (Abe & Adu, 2013). Effective teaching may include high level of creativity in analyzing, synthesizing and presenting knowledge in new and effective ways. It should instill in the learners the ability to be analytical, intellectually curious, culturally aware, employable and capable of leadership (Okolie, 2014).

Teaching is an art and the quality of teaching depends on the love, dedication and devotion of the teacher towards the subject of knowledge. Teaching is a purpose profession engaged in human resource development for individual and economic growth (Oyekan, 2000). It is done systematically by professionals who have acquired some skills and knowledge either by training or experience or both. The most single critical element in the education process is the teacher who plans, organizes, designs, directs, motivates and inspires others to learn using standard teaching techniques to impart knowledge (Okolocha & Onyeneke, 2013). To make desirable impact, teaching must aim at total development of the individual, that is, to enhance intellectual capabilities, developmental and cognitive intellectuality, foster psycho-social skills, and draw out neuro-physical aptitude of the learners (Akinmusire, 2012). All education institutions emphasize that teaching is important and it gives high priority to developing effective teaching and solving teaching challenges.

Secondary schools teachers need a good teaching ability to communicate important information, as well as understand different perspectives. Therefore to be an effective teacher, one need (at least) three abilities: i. Classroom management which is the ability to manage discipline. ii. Teaching skills which is the ability to impart knowledge and. iii. Subject knowledge which is the knowledge to impart students on specific areas. Academically qualified teachers refer to those who have academic training as a result of enrolment into educational institution and obtained qualifications in various areas of endeavour such as HND, B.Sc, B.A, and Master of Art (M.A.) and so on; while professionally qualified teachers are those who got professional training that gave them professional knowledge, skills, techniques, aptitudes as different from the general education. They hold degrees like, B.Ed, B.Sc. Ed, B.A. Ed, and M.Ed degrees and so on. Onyekuru and Ibegbunam (2013) found that teaching ability of teachers from secondary schools in Nigeria was below average.

Stakeholders of education especially parents as well as the entire society are now clamouring for quality in the education system which may be as a result of the perceived poor quality products turned out from the institutions on yearly basis. The demand for quality in education is not out of place considering the huge sum of money that goes into the system. The issue of quality in the educational system has been receiving a great deal of attention in the society in recent times. Education imparted through quality instruction is not only for good grades alone but also for the acquisition of the right values, skills and competences to make an individual a useful member of the society. For education to achieve this objective, it must be of high quality which should not only consist of passing examinations (which is usually the first priority) but also include the acquisition of skills (in the cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains) through improved schools’ ability to facilitate and support the work of teachers and students.

The school can only achieve this lofty objective through the use of the services of qualified teachers who have all it takes to give quality instruction through interaction with students in the teaching-learning situation. Babalola (2009) stated that experience in Nigeria has revealed that students’ academic achievement in secondary schools largely depend on the competence and dedication of the teacher who has a significant role to play in the reshaping of the creative potentials and ability of students. Similarly, Ademola (2007) posited that an educational system with low quality teachers will produce students with poor inspiration and aspiration. Such students, Ademola opined will not grasp enough of the subject matter and cannot learn with ambition.

From the above, it becomes imperative that secondary school teachers should be able to cope with the ever changing knowledge of technology and ensure that students acquire requisite knowledge, skills and values. Thus, secondary school teachers have to be well prepared for their job through pre- and in-service training. This sound training should at the end help the teachers in the implementation of the curriculum as they engage in effective teaching, for pleasant and meaningful understanding of students in order to achieve set objectives in the classroom. It was in the light of the above that that the need to examine the various ways by which secondary school teachers can be kept abreast of time and thus improve their teaching methods and students’ academic performance become imperative.

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1.2 Statement of the Problem

There is deficiency and poor academic performance of students in sciences subjects and this could be traced to lack of teachers’ competence and learning resources in our classrooms (Nwosu, 2000). It also has been observed that the present state of teaching in Nigeria indicates that many people who teach in secondary schools are not professional teachers (Inyang, 1993). This might be one of the reasons for the poor performance of students in WAEC/NECO examinations. In the result released by WAEC for the 2014 May/June Senior Secondary School Examination, only 31.28% (529,425) candidates out of 1,692,435 candidates who sat for the examination had credits in five subjects and above including Mathematics and English Language as against 38.81% and 36.57% in 2012 and 2013 May/June examinations respectively. Though the result of May/June 2017 had recorded increase in the pass rate with 923,486 candidates representing 59.22% of a total of 1,471,151 candidates who sat for the examination scoring a minimum of five credits including Mathematics and English Language as against 52.97% in 2016, there is a lot more to be done therefore to encourage pass rate in schools. Research studies have shown that many secondary school products in Nigeria are poor in reading, writing, computational and vocational skills (Uzoka cited in Oviawe, 2016). Many of them also perform woefully in various examinations. Although several attempts have been made at improving teacher quality and teaching facilities, these efforts have not been proportionately reflected in students’ overall performance. Therefore, there is the need for teachers to acquire enough skills to make them relevant technologically. Although many variables account for students’ academic performance such as adequacy of educational resources (both human and material) and their effective utilization, conducive learning environment, this study was concerned mainly to investigating the influence of teaching ability on student’s academic performance in secondary schools.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The primary objective of this study was to investigate the influence of teaching ability on student’s academic performance in secondary schools.  Specifically, the study seeks to:

  1. To investigate the influence of teachers teaching ability on students’ academic performance in Kaduna State.
  2. To examine the influence of teachers’ qualification on the academic performance of students in Kaduna State.
  3. To determine the influence of teachers’ experience on the academic performance of students in Kaduna State.
  4. To proffer solutions to the challenges of poor academic performance in secondary schools in Nigeria.

1.4 Research Questions

The following research question has been drafted out to guide the researcher carry out a successful research thus:

  1. Is there any significant relationship between teachers’ teaching ability and students academic performance in Kaduna?
  2. Is there any significant difference between the academic performance of students taught by qualified teachers and those taught by unqualified teachers?
  3. Is there any significant difference between the academic performance of students taught by experience teachers and those taught by inexperienced teachers?
  4. Does academic qualification of teachers influence students’ academic performance in secondary schools in Kaduna Educational zone?
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1.5 Research Hypotheses

To aid the successful completion of the study, the following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher;

H0: There is no significant difference between the academic performance of students taught by qualified teachers and those taught by unqualified teachers.

H1: There is a significant difference between the academic performance of students taught by qualified teachers and those taught by unqualified teachers.

H0: There is no significant difference between the academic performance of students taught by experience teachers and those taught by inexperienced teachers.

H2: There is a significant difference between the academic performance of students taught by experience teachers and those taught by inexperienced teachers.

1.6 Significance of the Study

Every research works are aimed at finding solutions to already existing challenges. The study will be significant to the students, teachers, principals, parents and the society at large. The study will be of benefit to the educational administrators, policy makers and students in particular to identify the impact of teachers’ incompetence on poor academic performance in secondary schools in the Kaduna State. At the completion of the study, the findings will aid teachers when admitting students in the pre-service programme and admit students of any experience and gender. The government can also design inservice programme based on these findings. The findings will also guide policy on employment, deployment, promotion and training criteria of physics teachers. However, this study will serve as a reference materials to future researchers and also help to identify other areas of research interest.

1.7 Scope and Limitations of the Study

The scope of the study covers the influence of teaching ability on student’s academic performance in secondary schools, the researcher intends to focus only on selected secondary schools in Kaduna Metropolis. But in the cause of the study, there were some factors that limited the scope of the study;

(a) Availability of research material: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study.

(b) Time: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.

(c) Finance: The finance available for the research work does not allow for wider coverage as resources are very limited as the researcher has other academic bills to cover

1.8 Definition of Terms

Influence: This is the capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behaviour of someone or something, or the effect itself.

Teaching: This is referred to the occupation, profession, or work of a teacher.

Teaching ability: Teaching ability is defined as a teaching acts or behaviors intended to facilitate students learning directly or indirectly.

Teacher: A teacher is a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue. Informally the role of teacher may be taken on by anyone

Students: A student is primarily a person enrolled in a school or other educational institution and who is under learning with goals of acquiring knowledge, developing professions and achieving easy employment at a particular field.

Academic Performance: Academic achievement or academic performance is the extent to which a student, teacher or institution has attained their short or long-term educational goals.

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