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The Influences of Teachers Characteristics and Academic Achievement of Biology Students in Secondary Schools

The Influences of Teachers Characteristics and Academic Achievement of Biology Students in Secondary Schools

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The purpose of this study was to examine teachers’ characteristics and academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State. In line with the three specific objectives, three research questions and three null hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. Review of the related literature was carried out under the following sub-headings: concepts of teachers’ characteristics, teachers’ qualification and academic achievement of biology students, teachers’ gender and academic achievement of biology students, teachers’ experience and academic achievement of biology students, and the summary of the literature reviewed.

An expost facto research design was adopted for this study. The population for the study was all the thirty six (36) Biology teachers and all the one thousand six hundred and ten (1,610) SS2 Biology Students in all the thirteen public secondary schools in the study area. Sample size of one hundred and fifty (150) SS2 Biology students and ten (10) Biology teachers were randomly selected from five (5) schools using simple random sampling technique.

Two instruments were adopted for data collection in this study; they were Students’ Raw Scores (SRS) and a Questionnaire titled “Teachers’ Characteristics Questionnaire (TCQ). The data collected was analyzed using independent t-test statistical method. The result revealed that teachers’ characteristics such as teacher’s qualification, and teachers’ years of teaching experience influenced the academic achievement of students; while teacher’s gender has no significant effect on students’ academic achievement. 

The Influences of Teachers Characteristics and Academic Achievement of Biology Students in Secondary Schools

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1   Background to the Study

The development of any nation is extricably tied to its educational system. Education is the light that shows mankind the right direction to surge as well as being an engine for the growth and progress of any society. Education does not only impart knowledge, skills and inculcates values, but it is also responsible for building human capacity which breeds, drives and sets technological innovation and economic growth into action.

These functions of education can only be achieved when the teachers who are the curriculum implementers are professionally qualified. National policy on Education (2018) stated that no educational system can rise above the quality of its teachers. Therefore, the success or failure of any educational system depends mainly on the teachers. This means that a well planned curriculum is not a guarantee that learning will takes place but for effective teaching/learning to take place, it is also necessary to have teachers who are competent for effective curriculum implementation.

Teachers are the hub of the educational system in the world, and Nigeria in particular. The key to the attainment of the educational goal has been entrusted to the teachers. Teachers have been known to have important impact on the teaching of any educational subject. This is because the teacher is ultimately responsible for translating educational policies and principles into actions based on practice during interaction with the students.

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Teacher’s characteristics in this study refer to those features possessed by a teacher which will help him/her implement the educational curriculum effectively. Some examples of these characteristics include, qualification of the teacher, years of teaching experience, gender of the teacher, attitude, interest, competence, knowledge of the subject matter, method of his/her teaching, teacher’s personality, and the teacher’s appearance.

No adequate teaching can take place without effective and competent teachers to handle teaching. The availability of qualified teachers determine the extent of teaching which also influence the academic achievement of students. Teachers’ attitude contributes significantly to students’ attention in the classroom; this means that the attitude of the students toward any subject can be influenced by the teacher’s attitude. On the issue of teacher’s years of experience, there is an adage which says that, “experience is the best teacher”. This is an indication that a teacher with many years of teaching experience has been exposed to many things such as students-individual differences, in the teaching profession.

Moreover, teachers’ competence refer to the right ways of conveying units of knowledge, self confidence and skills to students. What constitutes teacher’s competency includes: knowledge of the subject matter, methods of teaching, ability to utilize instructional resources, means of conveying content, and communication techniques. Teachers’ knowledge of the subject matter can be measured in terms of their intellectual competence, in-depth knowledge about the concept, attitude to teaching, degree of creativity, and competence in lesson delivery (Aston, 2011).

The Influences of Teachers Characteristics and Academic Achievement of Biology Students in Secondary Schools

Another variable of a teacher is the extent of his/her exposure to in-service training programs. In-service training program in this study refers to the case where teachers who are already in the service go on training or course program in order to update or acquire the intellectual and professional skills that are necessary for them to discharge their duties more efficiently. It could also be seen as staff development programmes such as workshops, conferences, and seminars. These help in offering a classroom teacher promising ways of improving instructional skills. They also assist the teachers to improve on their teaching strategies, technique of handling new instructional materials or possess the necessary information and skills that are required for effective lesson delivery.

Biology as an important subject in every area of life and in all other science subjects must be handled with seriousness. This is the reason why the researcher considered it necessary to examine teachers’ characteristics and academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area.

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1.2   Statement of the Problem  

Biology is an important subject which is compulsory for all the science students in senior secondary school level. It is one of the core science subjects required for admission into science related courses in higher institutions. But the performance of students in this very important subject is questionable (Essien, 2012).

According to Johnson (2016), the continuous decline in students performance among Biology students has been a source of worry to teachers and educational stake-holders. The poor achievement of students in this important subject has been attributed to many factors which include; student’s attitude, school factors, teaching methods, teachers’ characteristics to mention but a few. Based on these problems, the researcher considered it necessary to investigate into the effects of teachers’ Characteristics and students’ academic achievement in Biology in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area.

1.3   Purpose of the Study

The purpose of the study was to examine teachers’ characteristics and academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area.  Specifically, the study sought to:

  1. Examine the effects of teacher’s professional qualifications on academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area.
  2. Examine the effects of teacher’s gender on academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area.
  3. Examine the effects of teacher’s years of teaching experience on academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area.

The Influences of Teachers Characteristics and Academic Achievement of Biology Students in Secondary Schools

 1.4   Research Questions 

The following research questions were formulated to give direction to the study.

  1. Does teachers professional qualification affect the academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area?
  2. Does teachers gender affect the academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area?
  3. Do teachers years of teaching experience affect the academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area?

1.5   Research Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses were formulated to guide the study.

  1. There is no significant effect of teacher’s professional qualifications on academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area.
  2. There is no significant effect of teacher’s gender on academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area.
  3. There is no significant effect of teacher’s years of teaching experience on academic achievement of Biology students in secondary schools in Uyo Local Government Area.
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1.6    Significance of the sturdy 

This study will be significant to the teachers, students, and educational stake holders         in the following ways:

  • The teachers will be exposed to those factors that influence their teaching effectiveness and device a plan to overcome those factors.
  • The students will also benefit from the findings of the study because when teachers possess the necessary characteristics, the students will have interest in the learning of Biology which will lead to improvement in their academic achievement.
  • The educational stake-holders will be aware of those teachers’ characteristics that influence the teaching of Biology. Therefore during the process of recruitment, they will know those to recruit and the policies that they will bring out in order to assist in student academic achievement.

The Influences of Teachers Characteristics and Academic Achievement of Biology Students in Secondary Schools

1.7    Limitation of the Study 

The following challenges were confronted by the researcher in the course of conducting the study.

  1. Poor attitude of the students: Some of the students were having badly during the process of instrument administration. However the researcher was able to do this with the help of the teachers who promptly attended to her immediately she got to the schools.
  2. Time Constraint: As at the time of carrying out this study, the researcher had other school activities to carry out. Thus, the period of time given for the study was not enough for wider respondents.
  3. Financial Constraint: The high cost of transportation to visit the selected schools for the study posed a little problem to the researcher but she was able to overcome this by limiting the number of times she visited each school.

The Influences of Teachers Characteristics and Academic Achievement of Biology Students in Secondary Schools

1.8 Operational Definition of Terms

The following terms were defined as they are used in the study.

  1. Teachers Characteristics: These are the features possessed by the teachers which can influence their teaching effectiveness. e.g qualification, experience etc.
  2. Qualification: This refers to the level of educational attainment by the teacher.
  3. Experience: This is considered in terms of number of years which a teacher has been in the teaching profession.
  4. Gender: This refers to the sex of a teacher which could either be male or female.
  5. Biology: This is a branch of science that deals with the study of living organisms (plants and animals).
  6. Academic Achievement: Ekeng (2021) defines it as what the students are able to get after the delivery of the lesson and what they can use the knowledge to perform; either creditably well or poorly, during examination.

Mr. Harrison

Project Gurus is a subsidiary website owned by Harrilibrary Integrated Services which was registered under the Corporate Affairs Commission of Nigeria that was established in 1990 vide Companies and Allied Matters Act no 1 1990 as amended, now on Act cap C20 Laws of Federation of Nigeria. Our aim and objective is to assist students all over the world on their educational research works. We are committed toward assisting students at all level of education in their academic work. We have a team of seasonal writers who are vested with the current knowledge in research work. For more information contact on via Email @[email protected] or WhatsApp us on +2348127963962

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