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Visual Material Utilization and Academic Achievement in Biology among Secondary School Students

Visual Material Utilization and Academic Achievement in Biology among Secondary School Students

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 Abstract

The research on visual material utilization and academic achievement in biology among secondary school students was conducted in Nsit Atai Local Government Area. Two research questions were formulated to guide the study.

A quasi experimental design was employed in carrying out the study. The estimated population of this study was 1,772 SSII Biology students in the study Area. A simple random sampling technique was used in selecting 200 students from four (4) schools selected as the sample population for the study. Biology Achievement Test (BAT) was used as the major instrument for data collection.

The data generated from the instrument was analyzed using independent t-test analysis. The results showed that both male and female performed academically great when visual material utilization is used in teaching Biology. It also revealed that students taught with visual material utilization performed better than those taught with lecture method.

Based on the findings, it was therefore recommended that the government should provide visual material for teaching and encourage teachers to utilize it for the teaching of Biology in Secondary Schools.    

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1    Background to the Study

Visual materials are instructional aids that enable the teacher to teach the students to the understanding. What a child sees brings more clarity to him. Wales (2002) is of the opinion that the use of instructional resources would make discovered facts glued firmly to the memory of students.

Selection of materials which are related to the basic lesson taught by the teacher helps in depth understanding of the lesson by the students thereby arresting their interest and thus motivating them to learn. The effectiveness of any instruction therefore depends on how able the teacher is able to communicate effectively with the students. This can be achieved through the use of visual materials.

According to Balogun (2006), visual material is an integral part of teaching-learning situations that helps to bring about permanent and meaningful experiences. Moreover, they reduce verbalism on the part of teachers, motivate learners and ensure better retention and transfer of knowledge (Ibidapo and Fagbemi, 2001).

In a nutshell, visual materials simply refer to a wide variety of equation of knowledge, skills and morals. This includes real objects, specimens, chalkboard and models, mockups, charts, television and other projected and non-projected materials and devices, which facilitate learning.

Biology is a natural and pure science that deals with the study of life and the existence of nature and living things in it. Biology is one of the subjects taught at secondary school level. It aims at introducing students to their environments, explaining natural phenomena and other things about the environment they are living in, for the purpose of creating awareness to the students as well as enhancing their creativity and understanding.

The need for visual materials is very indispensable for teaching students at the secondary school level because students at this age  (11-18) can hardly learn in abstraction in enumerating such factors.

Eshiet (2004) observed that the use of visual materials have become very popular in science teaching thereby creating impact on the academic performance of students. It becomes justifiable to examine the effect of visual materials utilization on the academic achievement of students in biology.

1.2    Statement of the Problem

Secondary education according to the National Policy on Education (1998) is an education given in an institution of students who are from the age of 11 to 18 or more years old. The secondary education system is very strategic as it is the foundation upon which the other levels of education are built on.

In other words, the quality of secondary education determines to a great extent, the standard and quality of tertiary education. Students in secondary schools do not learn effectively in abstraction. Hence, teachers should always use instructional materials in order to enhance their learning and academic performance.

The secondary school graduates from the locality hardly exhibit knowledge, skills and attitude based on biological principles and concepts in their daily personal lives. This poor scientific attitude and high failure rate at examinations reveals that most teachers do not use visual instructional in their teaching, hence, their teaching is ineffective. This might have partly accounted for the dwindling poor performance of students in secondary schools in recent years.

Moreover, it has been observed that the teacher non-utilization of visual instructional materials in their teaching might be due to their ignorance of the effect of visual instructional materials on students’ performance in Biology. This has therefore generated the need for a study to ascertain the effects of visual materials utilization and academic achievement in Biology among secondary school students.

1.3    Purpose of the Study

 The main purpose of this study was to find out the effect of visual utilization and academic achievement in biology among secondary school students in Nsit Atai Local Government Area. The objectives were as follows:

  1. To compare visual materials utilization and academic achievement of male and female students in biology among secondary school students.
  2. To compare the academic achievement of students taught with visual materials utilization and lecture method of teaching.

1.4    Significance of the Study

The study was designed to evaluate visual materials utilization on the academic achievement of students in Biology. It is therefore the belief of the researcher that the findings of this study will be of immense benefit to Biology teachers, as it will enable them to know how to utilize visual materials in their teaching.

The findings will also be beneficial to the secondary school students as it will help them to know the value of visual materials on their learning and academic performance. It will equally be beneficial to secondary school principals and Head/officials of other government agencies in charge of the management of secondary schools as they will be helped to know whether it is necessary or not to provide visual materials for secondary school teachers. Finally, the findings will add to the available literature on the topic for educational researcher and students.

1.5    Research Questions

The following research questions were formulated for the study:

  1. What is the difference in academic achievement of male and female students taught with visual materials utilization?
  2. What is the difference in academic achievement of students taught with visual materials utilization and lecture method of teaching?

1.6    Research Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses were tested at 0.05 level of significance:

  1. There is no significant difference in academic achievement of male and female students taught with visual materials utilization.
  2. There is no significant difference in the academic achievement of students taught with visual materials utilization and lecture method.

1.7    Limitation of the Study

 This research was limited only to specific secondary schools in Nsit Atai Local Government Area. The limitation has to do with financial constraints which made the researcher unable to study all of the secondary schools in the study area.

Another constraint was time, both the teacher and students were busy with serious academic activities which demanded their attention. Finally, the study was limited to four (4) selected secondary schools in the area under study due to transporting difficulties. 

1.8    Delimitation of the Study

The study was delimited to visual materials utilization on the academic achievement of students in Biology. The study covers only selected secondary schools in Nsit Atai Local Government Area.

1.9    Definition of Terms

Academic Achievement: The performance of students in a school subject as indicated by scores in relevant tests.

Biology: A natural science that deals with the study of life, nature and living things.

Instructional: The act intended for purposes of teaching to impact information or knowledge.

Lecture Method: Is an oral presentation intended to present information or teach people about a particular subject.  It is one way channel of communication of information.

Media: Media are those materials that convey instructional contents e.g. book, films, videotapes, slide tapes, presentation, etc.

Visual Materials: They are resources that appeals to the sense of sight. They include pictures, charts, models, etc. they make a lesson more clearer and understandable to the students.

Secondary Schools: A school that provides the foundation level of education for students between 11-18 years and above.

Utilization: The act of using something especially for a practical purpose.

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