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Ways Of Improving Students’ Performance In Mathematics In Senior Secondary School In Oshimili South Local Government Area Of Delta State

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ABSTRACT

This study is an investigation into the ways of improving students’ performance in mathematics in Senior Secondary School in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State. Based on the purpose of this study, four research questions were raised. A sample of 105 respondents was used which comprised of students and teachers of the five selected secondary schools in the local government. The instrument for data collection was a well-structured questionnaire. A thorough review of relevant data was analyzed and interpreted using statistical mean and standard deviation. The design of the study was survey design, this was employed to critically examine into the ways of improving students’ performance in mathematics. Important conclusions was drawn from the analysis and the following findings were made, unavailability of qualified mathematics teacher, students attitude towards mathematics and mathematics teachers’, inadequacy of school time-table and teaching methodology employed by the teacher  affects students’ performance in mathematics in senior secondary schools. Based on the above findings, it was recommended that: The government should make that qualified teachers are employed to teach mathematics, the Ministry of Education should introduce conference, seminars, and workshop to both teachers, students and trainee teachers; training should be given to teachers on regular interval in order to update and upgrade their teaching skills, teachers should be motivated through attractive salaries, promptly with social and economic benefit so as to stimulate the greater performance in teaching of mathematics ,Student’ should make effort to eradicate every negative impression about mathematics and guidance and counseling units should be established in schools to guide students on the use and applicability of mathematics.

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

  • Background to the Study

The word mathematics is a Greek word; meaning things that are learned. Mathematics is the major aspect of all science subjects so far and its uses are applied in our everyday life. Mathematics is described as a subject that affects all aspect of human life at different degrees (Maliki, Ngban and Ibu 2009). This shows that, it is an essential requirement by every field of endeavor and human development to cope with the changes of life. According to the National Mathematics Advisory Panel (2008), mathematics is used throughout our daily lives. Mathematics as a school subject is recognized as the foundation of science and technology without which a nation will never become prosperous and economically independent. This underscores the importance of mathematical competence of all the learners at all levels of education and a reason for making mathematics compulsory and one of the leading core subject in the senior secondary school curriculum. Federal Republic of Nigeria (2004) on its national policy on education says; The government has clearly confirmed the importance of mathematics by making it a core and compulsory subject in both junior and senior secondary levels. The importance accorded the vital role it plays in nations’ development from the pre-historic era to the present and its role is more significant in the future.

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The great recognition given to mathematics as a result of its contribution to the development of the society is expected to yield a satisfactory students’ performance in the subject but, reverse is the case in Nigerian society. Despite the effort put in by the government and various stakeholders in education, mathematics failure still remainnews in secondary schools, due to the fact that students’ performance in mathematics has not improved significantly. Therefore, the current need and importance of mathematics and ways to improve students’ poor performance in mathematics in senior secondary school in Nigeria has posed an enormous challenge to mathematics teachers and researchers in Nigeria.

However, the distaste of the subject “MATHEMATICS” is attaining a serious dimension, and if the scenarios are not properly checked, the result may finally prove a painful injury to our nation and a great hindrance to our future scientific development. Ola (2011), stated that the poor performance of students in senior secondary school is attributed to two main factors which include; hereditary and environmental factors. He further stressed that student reason for their poor performance is that mathematics is highly structured, so abstract and requires intellectual attitude. There is a general impression that mathematics is difficult by its very nature, and because of this impression, there is poor performance among senior secondary school students who are the focus of this study. This come along side with the fear imposed on them about mathematics from their early stage, to this point in time, which has caused senior secondary school poor performance in mathematics in WASSCE, NECO and other external examinations. The threat posed by mathematics to the candidates preparing for external examination has made them lost hope and psychologically defeated due to fear. Nwogu (2008) articulated the fact that inherent notion held by many Africans that mathematics is a very difficult subject which is capable of making one ‘mad’ is at the centre of the phobia which students exhibit for mathematics and which had claimed many causalities over the years. He passed the question, “how then would any person in fairness expect our poor and innocent children to be as courageous as to face something which is capable of making even an adult mad? The students would prefer to do something else no matter how difficult rather than mathematics.

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Furthermore, importance of a child’s education both to himself and the nation in general cannot be undermined. Having in mind that education is an instrument for nations’ development, as such, both the state and the federal government should recognize the importance of education and hence, it should be accorded greater priority and a higher share of its budget proposal, especially mathematics. Since the place of mathematics can never be undermined to this end. Enough investigation to improve the performance of students in mathematics should be done in other to achieve the optimum objective in education.

Finally, this research project will be made to investigate into the ways of improving students’ poor performance in mathematics in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State which happens to be the specified area of this study. Henceforth, attempt will be made to find the possible solution that will help ameliorate the deplore situation.

  • Statement of the Problem

Mathematics has been made a compulsory subject in all senior secondary school in Nigeria because of its relevance to national development. But there has been growing concern about the general problem affecting the performance of students in mathematics in senior secondary school over the years. This reflected in 2014 May/June WASSCE result. The sun news, dated 2nd September, 2014 reported that Nigeria recorded its worst result in mathematics in the last three years. As reported by the sun news; out of 1.6 million students that took the 2014 May/June West African Senior School Certificate Examination, only a little more than half a million (31.28%) passed with the minimum requirement for admission into tertiary institutions. This poor performance has generated a lot of concern to major stakeholders in the educational sectors. Hence this study seek to investigate into the ways of improving students’ poor performance in mathematics in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State.

  • Purpose of the Study

The research study seek to investigate into the causes of senior secondary school students poor performance in mathematics and help figure out future possibility of improving students’ performance in mathematics in Oshimili  South Local government Area of Delta State.

Specifically, the purpose of the study are to:

  1. Determine the availability of qualified mathematics teachers.
  2. Determine students’ attitude towards mathematics and mathematics teachers.
  3. Determine the adequacy of time duration in teaching mathematics.
  4. Determine the teaching methodology to employ in other to improve students’.performance in mathematics.
    • Research Question

The following questions below were raised to guide the study:

  1. Does unavailability of qualified mathematics teacher affectstudents’ performance in mathematics in senior secondary school?
  2. To what extent does students’ attitude towards mathematics and mathematics teachers affect their performance in mathematics?
  3. To what extent does inadequacy of school time-table affects students’ performance in mathematics?
  4. Does teaching methodology employed by the teacher affects students’ performance in mathematics?
    • Significance of the Study
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This study is of immense significance, as the findings would have a positive effect and as well provide suitable measures to be undertaken to find the constraints and proffer valid solutions towards improving the poor performance of students in mathematics in senior secondary school in the study area. Students’, Parents, teachers and educational administrators will benefit from the study as the findings will help them make adequate adjustment where and when necessary to improve students poor performance in mathematics.

  • Scope and Delimitation of the Study

The study of mathematics is not only compounded in the local but also in state, federal and even national level, but for the purpose of this project work, the researcher were limited to an investigation into the ways of improving students poor performance in mathematics in senior secondary school in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State.

  • Limitation of the Study

In this study, the secondary schools in Nigeria are supposed to be used as sample where data will be collected from student and teacher but lack of finance, economic instability, insecurity in the country, political crisis and time factor, are the major difficulties encountered by the researcher in carrying out a research in the study; An Investigation into the Ways of Improving Students’ Poor Performance in Mathematics in Senior Secondary School’.

  • Definition of Terms

For simplicity purpose, some terminologies used were explained in simple ways.

Mathematics: Mathematics according to Maliki, Ngban and Ibu (2009), is described as a subject that affects all aspect of human life at different degrees.

Investigation: Means to make a careful enquiry in the study of something

Poor Performance: Students score, which are below 45% or below average, with reference to secondary school student

Constraints: This means some obstacles and problems that restricts the progress of something.

Ameliorate: to make better, or improve something perceived to be in a negative condition

Deplore: To weep bitterly over something, or feel sorrow for something.

Student: A person who studies or learns about a particular academic subject.

Improving: Means getting better.

Undermined: To weaken or work against something.

Underscore: To emphasize or draw attention to something.


Pages:  45

Category: Project

Format:  Word & PDF               

Chapters: 1-5                                          

Source: Imsuinfo

Material contains Table of Content, Abstract and References.

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