IDENTIFICATION OF FACTORS AFFECTING THE EFFECTIVE TEACHING AND LEARNING OF BIOLOGY PRACTICAL IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS

IDENTIFICATION OF FACTORS AFFECTING THE EFFECTIVE TEACHING AND LEARNING OF  BIOLOGY PRACTICAL IN SECONDARY  SCHOOLS


CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

Science is a great enterprise which nations depend on, in-order to advance technologically. Science therefore, is receiving much emphasis in education because of its significance and relevance to life and society. Biology as a branch of science and the prerequisite subject for many fields of learning contributes immensely to the technological growth of the nation. This includes medicine, forestry, agriculture, biotechnology and nursing. The study of Biology in senior secondary school can equip students with useful concepts, principles and theories that will enable them face the challenges before and after graduation.

          Biology as one of the science subject is bent in making one to be conversation with the environment he/she lives in appreciate the meaning of scientific life, to develop unbiased mind and to be intellectually homes with serve as ideal to the future citizen. Fortunately, it is a fact that Biology is the commonly chosen science subject of most secondary pupils are confirmed by the west Africa Examination council (WAEC) record.

The place of practical in teaching science cannot be over emphasized, little wonder why  Daramola (2018),  Opined that practical work has helped students in knowledge acquisition, like Ogunniyi (2007), advocated earlier that science, which would be taught in secondary schools, should be technologically oriented, which means to teach science with its practical application which strengthens the fact that in recent times, science teaching has taken a new trend Science belonged to the laboratory as cooking belongs to the kitchen and gardening to a garden. This is the state where science teaching is best done in the laboratories. Ndu (2010), also emphasized the practical teaching of science by saying that meaningful learning of science cannot be achieved without practical aspect of science stressing that science disciplines are not only the acquisition of facts but also embrace the processes. Woolnough (2014) also found that majority of secondary school teachers indicated that about 40% to 80% of the class time was spent in practical activities. Hodson (2012) in his own work, classified the reasons given by teachers for engaging in practical work into five major categories like to motivate learners by stimulating interest and enjoyment, teaching laboratory skills, to enhance learning of scientific knowledge, give insight into scientific methods, develop certain scientific methods, these coincides with the classification of practical work reported by Gott, Welford, and Foulds (1988) when they identified five types of practical works like, inquiry practical, investigative practical, skill practical, illustrative practical, and observational practical.

Although Abimbola, I.O, Dada, F.(2015) stated that some practical scientific experiences may be acquired in everyday life, the most important part of the experience is through practical work which gives the student the appreciation of the spirit of science. Therefore, there is no adequate substitute for retention of facts and which also makes learning more permanent because, practical work closely linked with theoretical work help to maximize opportunity to practice those scientific methods.

Practical activities in biology provide opportunities for students to actually do science as opposed to learning about science. Nzewi (2008) asserted that practical activities can be regarded as a strategy that could be adopted to make the task of a teacher (teaching) more real to the students as opposed to abstract or theoretical presentation of facts, principles and concepts of subject matters. Nzewi maintained that practical activities should engage the students in hands-on, mind-on activities, using varieties of instructional materials/equipment to drive the lesson home. Nwagbo (2008) stated that:

The use of practical activities (approach) to the teaching of biological concepts should therefore be a rule rather than an option to biology teachers, if we hope to produce students that would be able to acquire the necessary knowledge, skills and competence needed to meet the scientific and technological demands of the nation.

The search for a more effective approach for the teaching and learning of biology that will enhance the acquisition of process skills has persisted over the years. This is because, the acquisitions of science process skills are the bases for scientific inquiry and the development of intellectual skills and attitudes that are needed to learn concept

Acording to Nwagbo (2008), a number of factors have been identified as contributing to the non-acquisition of skills by secondary school students which invariably lead to poor performance and one of the factors is the teacher variable, that is, the teachers’ method of teaching. Furthermore, Okoli (2016) indicated that many science teachers prefer the traditional expository/lecture method of teaching that is, a teaching technique in which one person, the teacher, presents a spoken discourse on a particular subject and shy away from activity-oriented teaching methods which are student centered (such as inquiry method, discovery method, investigative laboratory approach). Nwagbo (2008) observed that such teacher-centred approach which places the teacher as the sole possessor of knowledge and the students as passive recipients of knowledge may not enhance achievement or promote positive attitude to biology. Apart from teaching methods, gender is also implicated in students’ achievement in science.

This project will concentrate on the teaching of Biology and the problem of teaching biology practical in selected secondary School in Akoko South East Local Government Area of Ondo State.

Statement Of Problems

The importance of practical in the development and performance of students in science cannot be over emphasized. Several researches stated earlier indicate the need for effective practical lesson using appropriate equipment. Yet many biology  teachers tend to avoid organizing practical lesson to their students. Some of the reasons for poor performance of students in examinations include poor science teaching due to teacher’s incompetence. Furthermore, most secondary schools teachers of biology concentrate on meeting the demand of West African Examination Council (WAEC) practical examinations. This has drawn the attention of concerned individuals on the genesis or causes of the situation.

There are evidence of effective teaching of biology practical in School and this has affected the performance of student in biology. This could be due to lack of equipment and materials or lack of proper training of the teachers handing the practical.

Therefore, the researcher is interested in Identify of factors affecting the effective teaching and learning of  biology practical in secondary  schools

Research Question

1.     What are the factors affecting effective teaching and learning of biology practical in senior secondary school

2.     Does teachers’ qualification has any effect on students’ performance in Biology practical?

3.     What are the attitude of students and teachers’ toward teaching of Biology practical?

4.     Is there enough equipment in the laboratory for effective teaching  and learning of biology practica;?

5.     What are the possible solution to the factors affecting  facing teaching and learning of practical biology

Purpose Of The Study

               The main purpose of this research work is identify  the factors affecting the effective teaching and learning of  biology practical in secondary  schools

The specific objective are

1.     To find out the factors affecting effective teaching and learning of Biology practical  

2.     To identify  if teachers’ qualification has any effect on students’ performance in Biology practical?

3.     To investigate the attitude of biology  teacher and students towards Biology practical?

4.     To find out if  there are enough equipment in the laboratory for effective teaching of biology?

5.     To profer solution to the  factors affecting effective teaching and learning of biology

    

Research Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses were tested at 0.05 level of significant

HO1: there is no significant difference on the factors affecting effective teaching and learning of biology practical in secondary school

Ho2 There is no significant different on teachers’ qualification and student performance in  practical biology

HO3: There is no significant difference between teachers’ attitude and students performance in practical biology

HO4: There is no significant difference between availability of laboratory equipment  andstudents academic performance in practical biology

Significance Of The Study

                   Practically, the following people will benefit from the finding of this study, student, biology teachers and the government. The result of the study could enable the students realize the importance of group and individual laboratory work situation in the effort of learning biology concepts. It could also help the students to become knowledgeable in the following areas: communication, problem-solving, self-confidence and critical thinking. These are knowledge they are expected to acquire from practical activities which could lead to students improvement on their academic achievement.

          The finding of this study will be of help to science teachers as it will enable them understand the right mode of laboratory work in teaching and to help the students to understand biology concepts with the abilities of carrying out practical work successfully. The teacher will realized that biology concepts are not taught in isolation but should be incorporated into practical work to maximize the achievement.

          The study will make the government, through the ministry of education to realize the need for provision of science equipment to schools and posting of qualified biology teachers to secondary schools, it is not the issue of jack of all trades master of non teaching has attained professionalism and specialization.

     LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

               Although, covering a large population would have given more accurate information, this study is based on only five selected secondary schools.

              This is due to the fact the scope of the work to be covered is too vast compared to the time within the writer’s disposal. I do hope that the schools chosen on which the research is carried out, would serve as a guide to giving a picture of the type of information needed.

              If a large population were worked on as all the different secondary Schools are expected to cover the same WAEC syllabus.

Definition Of Terms

PROBLEM –Means things that are difficult to deal with understand that is there are some difficulties in which teachers are facing while teaching biology practical in Schools for example lack of equipped laboratory and inadequate equipment. One to these problems, teacher will not be able to impact knowledge of biology practical into the student and the teaching will not be effective

TEACHING – This is an act of imparting knowledge to the learner in a conducive environment.

BIOLOGY – Is a scientific study of life’s, study of living and non-living things, is a study of life and structure of plants and animals. There are many branches of biology such as histology, physiology, phraseology e.t.c

PRACTICAL – It’s concerned with the reality and action rather than theory and ideas practical works impart good knowledge into the life of learner because it deals with reality and it can not forgotten.

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