EFFECTS OF INSTRUCTIONAL RESOURCES ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF STUDENTS IN HISTORY IN NIGERIA

 

BY

Dr. (Mrs.). A. A. Jekayinfa

 

ABSTRACT

            This study was carried out to find out the effects of instructional resources on the academic achievement of secondary school students in History. For the purpose of the study, data were collected from five hundred and five (505) form IV history students, eleven (11) History teachers and seven (7) principals in eleven (11) selected secondary schools in Ogbomoso North and Central Local Government areas of Oyo State.

            Teachers and students in the sampled schools were administered, an investigator – constructed questionnaire.  History Achievement Test was also administered on the students in the selected schools.  Results of the study indicated that adequate supply of instructional resources have significant effects on students’ performance in history.

            Furthermore, the results revealed that schools with adequate teacher quality and material resources in History showed superiority in achievements on the history test than schools without adequate teacher quality and material resources.

 


INTRODUCTION

            Education, according to Coombs (1970) consists of two components.  He classified these two components into inputs and outputs.  According to him, inputs consist of human and material resources and outputs are the goals and outcomes of the educational process.    Both the inputs and outputs form a dynamic organic whole and if one wants to investigate and assess the educational system in order to improve its performance, effects of one component on the other must be examined.

            Instructional resources which are educational inputs are of vital importance to the teaching of any subject in the school curriculum.  Wales (1975) was of the opinion that the use of instructional resources would make discovered facts glued firmly to the memory of students.  Savoury (1958) also added that, a well planned and imaginative use of visual aids in lessons should do much to banish aparthy, supplement inadequacy of books as well as arouse students interest by giving them something practical to see and do, and at the same time helping to train them to think things out themselves.  Savoury (1958) suggested a catalogue of useful visual aids that are good for teaching history i.e pictures, post cards, diagrams, maps, filmstrips and models.

            He said that selection of materials which are related to the basic contents of a course or a lesson, helps indepth understanding of such a lesson by the students in that they make the lesson attractive to them, thereby arresting their attention and thus, motivating them to learn.  He suggested a catalogue of aids which could be used to teach history.  He advocated the use of pictures which will help children in grounding their thoughts and feelings.  He said that pictures are used as alternatives to real objects where it is impossible to show students the real objects, and they do serve effectively in tan imagined activities.

            It is also very vital to have sufficient and adequate human resources in terms of teacher quality for the teaching of all subjects in the school curriculum.  Without the teachers as implementing factors, the goals of education can never be achieved.  In order to achieve a just and egalitarian society as spelt out in the Nigerian National Policy of Education (1981), schools should be properly and uniformly equipped to promote sound and effective teaching. Suitable textbooks, qualified teachers, libraries which are adequate should also be provided for schools.  Scarcity of these, according to Coombs (1970), will constraint educational system from responding more fully to new demands.  In order to raise the quality of education, its efficiency and productivity, better learning materials are needed. Knezewich (1975) also stressed the importance of having appropriate personnel plan and adequate physical facilities to support educational effort.

 

REVIEW OF LITERATURE

            Several people have written on the importance of instructional resources to teaching, Oluyori (1986) while stressing the importance of instructional technology commented that if the recently introduced system (6-3-3-4) in accordance with the  National Policy on Education is to be a success, then instructional technology has a role to ply.  Balo (1971) commented that “Audio-visual materials, as integral part of teaching-learning situations help to bring about permanent and meaningful experience.  He said that, they provide first-hand experience where possible or of vicarious one where only that is feasible.

            In enumerating the factors that could be responsible for varying intra-and inter-school/academic achievement, Coombs (1970), listed four important factors including the acute scarcity of instructional resources which he said constrained educational systems from responding more fully to new demands’.  He claimed that, in order to do their part in meeting the crisis in education, educational systems will need real resources that money can buy, they will need a fuller share of the nations’ manpower, not merely to carry on the present work of education, but to raise its quality, efficiency and productivity.  They will need buildings, equipments and more learning materials.

            On human resources, various educators for example, Ukeje (1970) and Fafunwa (1969) have written extensively on the prime importance of teachers to the educational development of any nation be it simple, complex, developed or developing.  From the writings of these educators, one can infer that whatever facilities are available, whatever content is taught, whichever environment the school is situated and whatever kind of pupils are given to teach, the important and vital role of the teacher cannot be over-emphasised.  Assuming that necessary facilities are adequately provided for, the environment is condusive to learning, the curriculum satisfies the needs of the students and the students themselves have interest in learning, learning cannot take place without the presence of the teacher.

            Teachers represent a large proportion of the input of an educational system.  Coombs (1970) observed that “the problem of teacher supply is not one of simple numbers.  It is first and foremost a problem of quantity and of getting the right quality.  Fayemi (1991) also observed that “it is a truism that teachers are the hubs of any educational system” that upon their number, their quality and devotion depend the success of any educational system”.

            Fafunwa (1979) in his paper “The purpose of teacher education” commented on the importance of teachers when he said:

                        “The demand for more and better schools, the need to relate

curriculum to the needs of the child and the environment,

the crying needs of the child and his other instructional materials,

the desirability of training in vocational and technical skills, and

indeed the overall problem of preparing the future citizens of Africa

who will be fully oriented to their environment cannot be fully

accomplished without the aid of competent teachers” (page 36 – 37).

            Fagbamiye (1977) noted that schools with stable, experienced and qualified teachers usually have better school facilities in terms of school buildings, books and equipments than those schools which have difficulty in attracting experienced and qualified staff.  Numerous investigations have also been carried out to find the effects of instructional resources on students’ academic achievement.  Eminent scholars have also contributed immensely to report the effect of one variable on the other.  Consequently, there have been many reports from these studies which had served as useful guides to the present one.

            Akintayo (1980) did a survey of the learning and teaching problems of history in the secondary schools in Ekiti central local government area of Ondo State.  She made use of 100 students and all history teachers in 6 secondary schools.  Questionnaires were distributed to them to respond to. 44% of the students agreed that one of the factors affecting poor performance in history is lack of qualified teachers to teach the subject.

            Momoh (1980) carried out a research on the effects of instructional resources on students’ performances in WASC examination in Kwara State.  He correlated material resources with academic achievements of students in ten subjects.  Information were collected from the subject teachers in relation to the resources employed in teaching in five schools.  The achievements of students in WASC examinations for the past five years were related to the resources available for teaching each of the subjects.  He concluded that material resources have a significant effect on students’ achievement in each of the subjects.

            In the same manner, Moronlola (1982) carried out a research in Ilorin local government of Kwara State.  She also used questionnaires to tap information on the material resources available for the teaching of ten subjects in ten secondary schools.  She collected WASC examination results for the past five years and related these to students’ achievements in each of the ten subjects and to the amount of resources available for the teaching of the subjects.  She also reported a significant effect of material resources on the academic achievements of students in each of the subjects.

            In the same vein, Popoola (1990) investigated the effect of instructional resources on the academic achievements of students in Ogun State.  Five secondary schools in Abeokuta were used for his study.  Questionnaires were  designed to elicit responses on instructional materials that were available for the teaching and learning of each of the three school subjects he examined.  He collected WASC examination results for five years and compared achievements of students in schools with adequate material resources and achievements of students in schools with inadequate material resources.  He found a significant difference in the achievements of the two sets of students.

            Akolo (1978) conducted a survey of audio-visual materials for eight Teacher Training Colleges in Kwara State and for twelve Teachers’ Colleges in Plateau State of Nigeria.  His study considered such elements as equipment and materials owned by each of the selected teachers colleges, utilization of equipments and materials owned, and the number of teachers that had some measure of audio-visual related training.  The study revealed that there was under-utilization of instructional equipments in some areas and non-utilization in other areas where the research was conducted.

 

Purpose of the Study

            The purpose of this study were:

1.                  To find out if there can be differences in the scores, on the test of history, of students in schools with adequate supply of qualified history teachers and the scores of students in schools with inadequate supply of qualified teachers.

2.                  To find out if there can be differences in the scores, on the test of history, of students in schools with adequate material resources in history and scores of student in schools with inadequate material resources in history.

 

Hypotheses Tested

            In order to identify the variables and to accomplish the purpose of this study, the following hypotheses were tested.

1.                  There is no significant difference in the scores, on the test of history, of students in schools with adequate supply of qualified history teachers and the scores of students in schools with inadequate supply of qualified teachers.

2.                  There is no significant difference in the scores, on the test of history of students in schools with adequate materials resources and the scores of students in schools with inadequate material resources.

 

METHODOLOGY

Sample

            The study sample consisted of eleven (11) history teachers, seven (7) principals and five hundred and five (505) Form IV history students, drawn from eleven selected secondary schools in Ogbomoso North and Central local government areas of Oyo State.

 

Instruments

            Two instruments developed by the researcher were used for the study.  One of the instruments was a questionnaire designed to tap information on instructional resources that were available in each of the schools for the teaching and learning of history.  The questionnaire was designed for the principals, history teachers and history students.  It is a 23 item questionnaire.  Three (3) of the items were designed to tap information on the quality of history teachers in each of the schools in terms of their qualification, teaching experience and work loads.  Ten (10) of the items were designed to tap information on materials for the teaching of history.  The ten (10) items were of the Likert type with a three point scale ranging from mostly used (MU) on the one end of the continuum, to absolutely not available (NA) on the other.  The remaining ten (10) items were designed to tap information on library facilities demanding the respondents to answer Yes or No.

            The students questionnaire comprised of (20) items on textbooks, visuals and audio-visual aids and library facilities that were in the teachers/principals questionnaires.  The questionnaire has two sections:

Section A deals with general information which include the name and type of schools, the sex, nationality and status of the respondents.

Section B (i) deals  with the teacher quality in terms of the qualification, teaching experience and work loads. Teachers only were to respond to the section.

Section C (ii) deals with a check list of textbooks that were recommended and useful for the teaching and learning of history in secondary schools.

Section D (iii) deals with visuals and audio-visual aids that might be available for the teaching and learning of history in a particular school and Section B (iv) deals with library facilities which the researcher feels are helpful for the teaching and learning of history.  The questionnaire was given to some history teachers in Ogbomoso and some lecturers at the departments of history and Curriculum Studies, University of Ilorin to check.  After some of the items were reframed, they all attested that the questionnaire was good for the purpose it was meant to serve.

            The second instrument was the investigator constructed History Achievement Test (HAT) which initially contained forty (40) objective questions of the multiple choice and True or False types.  The test was based on some aspects of West African History from 1800-1840 A.D.  The pilot testing of the instrument was done in two secondary schools  that did not take part in the research.  A sample of fifty-six (56) form IV history students were used for pilot-testing.  In the item analysis that was done on the test, item – total correlation ranged from .33 to .67. Ten (10) items whose correlations with the total test scores on the test were less than .35 were removed from the test.  The final test which contained thirty (30) items were then retested on the same fifty-six (56) students who did the former test of forty (40) items.  The test-rested correlational analysis yielded a co-efficient of .68 which was regarded as adequate for the stability and validation measures.

 

Procedure

            The first instrument (questionnaire) was administered to the subjects personally by the researcher and their response rate was high.  Out of the 22 questionnaires administered to the history teachers and principal, 18 were returned and all were found useable for the study.  Out of the 505 history students used for the study, 55 were given questionnaires to respond to.  All the 55 questionnaires administered on History students were returned.

            The second instrument – History Achievement Test was administered on the five hundred and five (505) History students and it was supervised by the researcher with the help of the history teachers in each school.  Two schools did the test in a day for a period of one hour (1 hour) in each school.  Statistical analysis was based on percentages, mean scores and t-test.

 

Data Analysis Procedure

            Teachers’ questionnaires were collected and analysed so as to obtain data on both teacher quality and material resources available for the teaching of history.  Students’ questionnaires were not analysed but were used to ascertain the sincerity of the teachers in filling the questionnaire.  The methods used in scoring the items of the questionnaire was as follows.

 

Teacher Quality

            The analysis of data on teacher quality was based on the assumption that teachers with the National Certificate on Education (NCE) are required to teach up to Form III in schools. Where there are not enough graduate teachers, they can teach the upper classes of a secondary school.

            This assumption is in line with the Ashby recommendation of 1960 in Fafunwa (1976) which recommended the establishment of N.C.E. programme to produce intermediate teachers in senior primary school classes and junior secondary school classes, Ashby recommendation has since been accepted and used by the Federal and State Governments of Nigeria.

            Graduate teachers are expected to teach the upper secondary school classes i.e. Form IV and V.   It is also assumed in this study that university graduates without teaching qualification cannot teach effectively and efficiently as university graduates with teaching qualifications.  In this study, an appropriate higher degree is a higher degree in Education.  This include Ph.D, M.Ed or B.A. Ed of their (equivalent) plus M.A. in History with PGDE.  There are some other categories of teachers who may be found in the secondary schools teaching history.  These other categories of teachers include Grade II; Assoicateship diploma in education, Higher School Certificate (H.S.C.) holders.  G.C.E. O/A level certificate holders; H.N.D., O.N.D. certificate holders.

            For the various categories of teachers that might be available for the teaching of history in each school, a five-point rating scale was used for analyzing the data in this study (Table 1).

            It was further assumed by the researcher that the teaching loads of history teachers can have a direct effect on their teaching efficiency and effectiveness and this can reflect in the academic achievement of their students in history.  It was assumed that the lesser the teachers’ work loads, the more efficient and effective they are.  The researcher assumes that 18 periods or below is about the moderate number of teaching periods to make a teacher very effective in his teaching.  For this reason, a four point rating scale was used for the teaching loads of history teachers. (Table 2).

TABLE 1

RATING FOR TEACHERS QUALIFICATIONS

TEACHER CATEGORY

POINTS

Ph.D/M.Ed/M.A (History)

B.Ed/B.A.Ed (History)

N.C.E. (History)

B.Sc./B.A

Others

5

4

3

2

1

 


TABLE 2

RATING FOR TEACHERS’ WORK LOAD

NO OF TEACHING PERIODS PER WEEK

POINTS

18 Periods and below

Between 19 and 21 periods

Between 22 and 30 periods

Above 30 periods

4

3

2

1

 

The researcher further assumes that experience of the teachers counts much on their teaching effectiveness and also on the students’ understanding of what is taught.  It is assumed that the more experienced a teacher is in the teaching of a particular subject, and the higher will his students score on a test.  For this reason, a four-point rating scale was used to quantify the teaching experience of history teachers in each school (Table 3).

 

TABLE 3

RATING FOR TEACHING EXPERIENCE

TEACHER CATEGORY

POINTS

Over 6 years

Between 5 and 3 years

Between 2 and 1 year

Below 1 year

4

3

2

1

 


Material Resources

            On material resources, a check-list of textbooks recommended for the teaching and learning of history by both the Oyo State government and the Conference of Principals in the state was prepared.  The researcher believes that some of the listed textbooks are good as teachers’ references.  So also, visual and audio-visual materials that are thought necessary for the effective teaching of history were listed.

            The scale ranged from mostly used on one end of the continue to absolutely not available on the other.  It was assumed that materials that are mostly used contribute most to the teaching and understanding of history.  Those materials that are rarely used have better effect on understanding of history than those that are not used at all.  It is also assumed that materials that are available in the schools can be made use of when occasion calls for it, so, they are then better than those materials that are not available at all in the school.

            Resources that are not available in the schools have no contribution whatsoever to the teaching and learning of history.  For this reason, 3 points was awarded to materials mostly used; 2 points was awarded to those rarely used; 1 point was awarded to materials not available.  On library resources, respondents were requested to answer Yes or No. ‘Yes’ was scored 1 point each and ‘No’ was scored zero.

 

Results

            In order to test hypothesis which states that there is no significant difference in the scores, on the test of history, of students in schools with adequate supply of qualified history teachers and the scores of students in schools with inadequate qualified teachers, data collected were analysed.  It was assumed that schools that scored 60% and above on the question on teacher quality have adequate supply of qualified teachers in history.  On the other hand, schools that scored less 60% on teachers quality were assumed to have inadequate supply of qualified teachers in history.  In this regard, the schools used for the purpose of the study were grouped into two.  Group 1 consisted of six (6) schools that have adequate teacher quality while the four (4) schools in Group 2 were those that have inadequate teacher quality for the teaching of History.  For the fact that the number of students that fall under each of the groups were unequal, the scores of one hundred students were randomly selected for computation in each group. The results are shown in Table 4.

TABLE 4:       The Difference between the mean scores on History Test for Group 1, (students with adequate Teacher quality) and Group 2 (students with inadequate Teacher quality) and its t value

Group

No. of Subjects

Mean-Scores

Difference

t value

1. (With adequate teacher quality in History

 

100

 

41.57

 

5.65

 

3.49**

2. (With inadequate teacher quality in History)

 

100

 

35.91

 

 

Note ** P < .01

Degree of freedom 198.

The table revealed that there is a significant difference between the two groups on history achievement scores.  The table provided enough justification for rejecting the hypothesis and thereby accepting that there is significant difference in the scores, on the test of history, of students in schools with adequate teacher quality and the scores of students in schools with inadequate teacher quality in history.

            In order to test hypothesis 2, the same procedure explained above was used.  Schools used for the study were grouped into two.  Schools that fall under group one (1) were those that have adequate material resources for the teaching and learning of history by scoring 60% or above on materials resources.  Schools that scored below 60% were categorized under group 2.  The computation of t test showed a statistically significant difference between the two groups in terms of academic achievements of their students in history.  The results are shown in Table 5.

 

TABLE 5:       The Differences in the Students’ Academic Achievements in a test of History between Schools with Adequate Material Resources and Schools with inadequate Materials Resources

Group

No. of Subjects

Mean-Scores

Difference

t value

1. (With adequate material resources on History

 

100

 

44.72

 

6.92

 

3.99**

2. (With inadequate material resources on History)

 

100

 

37.80

 

 

Note ** P  .001

Degree of freedom 198.

            The calculated t-value was 3.99 and was significant at (p < .01).  The table thus revealed that schools having adequate material resources obtained a mean score which was significantly greater than that of the schools without adequate material resources.  In other words, the table revealed that there are statistical significant differences in the scores, on the test of history, of students in schools with adequate material resources and the scores of students in schools with inadequate material resources on history.

 

Discussion  and Recommendations

            The outcome of the analysed data showed that both adequate supply of teachers and material resources greatly influenced students’ academic performance in History.  These results confirmed the views of some writers like Walberg (1974).  Fafunwa (1979), Fagbamiye (1977), Fayemi (1991), Moronfola (1982), Momoh (1980) and Popoola (1981).

            On the basis of the findings of this study, it is recommended that one way to improve the achievements of students in history is to provide more qualified teachers in the secondary schools to teach the subject.  Another way is to increase the provision of adequate material resources for the teaching of the subject.

            Bearing in mind the importance of material resources to teaching and learning, adequate instructional aids should be provided for the teaching of history in order to increase students’ performance in the subject.  Both teacher quality and material resources are intimately related. Teachers can be frustrated without adequate supply of materials needed to teach their subjects.  It is therefore highly essential to provide adequate and relevant materials for the teaching and learning not only of history but of all other subjects in the secondary school curriculum.

            History teachers are advised to always attend workshops, seminars, vocational courses to make them be abreast of the current development in the subject.  There is also the need for history teachers to be creative and resourceful.  Materials that are very costly to purchase can be improvised.  Provision should be made to establish and equip library in every school.  There should also be provision for the training of the students in the use of library.

            Parents should be encouraged to buy recommended textbooks on history for their wards to supplement teachers’ notes.  The Federal Ministry of Education and the Nigerian Education Research Council (NERC) should establish or if it has been established should make functional, centre for the provision of locally developed teaching aids and its function should include the evaluation and recommendations on specific and relevant instructional materials.

 


REFERENCES

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Akolo, J.B. (1978). “Audio-visual Aids and the Post Primary Teacher”. A paper presented at the First Audio-Visual Workshop for selected teachers, Inspectors of Education and Audio-Visual Officers in Ilorin, Kwara State.

Balogun, A.A. (1971). “The use of Audio-Visual Materials in Geography teaching in Post Primary Schools in Nigeria”. West African Journal of Education. Vol. No. 3 pp. 211-212.

Coombs, P.H. (1970).  The World Educational Crisis: A system Analysis. New York. Oxford University Press.

Fagbamiye, E.O. (1977). “Inequalities in Nigerian Educational Administration”, Lagos Education Review.  A Journal of Studies in Education, vol. 1, April 1977.

Fafunwa, B. (1969). “The purpose of Teacher Education” in Adaralegbe A. (Ed.) A Philosophy for Nigerian Education, Ibadan. Heineman Educational Books (Nig.) Limited.  P. 84.

Fayemi, T.A. (1991). “The effects of Instructional Resources on the Learning of History in Selected Secondary Schools in Ogbomoso Local Government”. An Unpublished B.Ed Thesis.

Federal Republic of Nigeria (1981). National Policy on Education (Revised) Lagos, Federal Government Press.

Gibson, G.D. (1981). “The Development of Resource Centres in Scotish Secondary Schools”, British Journal of Educational Technology 12, vol. 1.

Momoh, S. (1980). “A study of the relationship between Instructional Resources and Academic Achievement of Students in Ilorin Local Government Kwara State”. An Unpublished M.Ed Thesis.

Moronfola, B. (1982). “Effects of Instructional Resources on the Academic Achievements of Secondary school Students in Ilorin Local Government of Kwara State. Unpublished M.Ed Research Thesis.

  Oluyori, F.O. (1986). “Delimiting Factors to Instructional Media Utilization in Nigeria School”, Journal of Curriculum and Instruction. vol. 1 pp. 196 – 206.

Popoola, T.A. (1980). “An investigation into the relationship between instructional resources and students academic performance in Secondary Schools in Abeokuta Local Government Area of Ogun State of Nigeria”. An Unpublished M.Ed Thesis.

Savoury, N. J. (1958). “Visual aids in teaching History”.  West African Journal of Education. Vol. 2. No. 1 pp. 5 – 9.

Ukeje, D. O. (1970). “Performance Oriented Teacher Education”: Report of the 5th Annual Conference, Western Council of the Association for Teacher Education in Africa. P. 59.

Wales, J. (1966). “The Place of Teaching aids in Nigerian Education”, West African Journal of Education, Vol. 3 No. 2.