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Project Topic:

ASSESSING PRACTICAL ACTIVITIES IN BIOLOGY AND ITS INFLUENCE ON SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS ACHIEVEMENT

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 Format: MS WORD ::   Chapters: 1-5 ::   Pages: 80 ::   Attributes: Questionnaire, Data Analysis,abstract, table of content, references ::   879 people found this useful

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CHAPTER ONE

  1. INTRODUCTION

1.1   BACKGROUND OF STUDY

Biology is a branch of science that deals with the study of living things, which includes human-beings (Michael, 2012). Biology has many branches which include; zoology, botany, ecology, genetics, morphology, anatomy, physiology, histology, microbiology, evolution, cell biology to mention but a few. Many societal issues are biology-based. These include biodiversity, genetically modified organisms, reproductive technologies, and prolongation of life, food production, tourism industry (biological gardens) and processing industries.

All of these issues have involved improvements that meet human needs and so this twentieth century has been considered as ‘the age of biology’ (Reiss, 1998). The knowledge of biology helps in checking environmental degradation such as desertification, erosion, water hyacinth, land, and air and water pollution. The cardinal objectives of biology education are to prepare students to acquire: adequate laboratory and field skills in biology; meaningful and relevant knowledge in biology; ability to apply scientific knowledge to everyday life in matter of personal and community health and agriculture; lastly reasonable and functional scientific attitudes (Federal Ministry of Education, 2004). Despite the importance of biology, students’ achievement in the subject from West African Secondary School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) has been poor (Glasson, 2009). Therefore due to the poor performance of students in Biology, a study is on assessing practical activities in Biology and its influence on student’s achievement is undergone.

Practical activities are investigations that are carried out in the laboratory or field which provide students the opportunities of becoming more knowledgeable with science practical skills, which includes observation, identification, classifying, hypothesizing, predicting, measuring and experimenting. Nzewi (2008) asserted that practical activities can be regarded as a strategy that could be adopted to make the task of teaching more real to the students as opposed to abstract or theoretical presentation of facts, principles and concepts of subject matters.

Nzewi (2008) further maintained that practical activities should engage the students in hands-on and minds-on activities, using varieties of instructional materials/equipment to drive the lesson home. Practical activities have played a special and central role in science education for a long time, and science educators believe that engaging students in practical activities has many benefits: they stimulate creativity, curiosity and critical thinking, promote students’ engagement with the scientific methods and encourage active learning and problem-solving approach.

Practical activities also provide opportunities to collect and analyze data and apply mathematical knowledge to support and illustrate concepts, facts and principles (Garnett, 2005; Lunetta, 2008). Laboratory practical works provide a way not only for developing varieties of different practical skills but also developing favourable attitudes, interest, pleasure, enthusiasm, imitation, imagination and cooperation among students (Nworgu, 2009).

1.2   STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

The teaching of Biology practical lessons is not spared from drawbacks which inhibit the achievement of set goals. The factors such as unavailability of science teachers in schools, lack of materials, lack of funds and time have constrained the teaching of Biology practical lessons. Consequently, many students fail to perform well in Biology maybe due to inadequacy of instructional material such as laboratories, chemicals, models, apparatus, local specimens and shortage of textbooks. Lack of allocated time for biology practical time and irregularity of carrying out practical Biology by teachers may also have influence on secondary school student’s achievement. Finally several researches has been carried out on the influence of Demonstration method of teaching biology but not even a single research has been carried out on assessing practical activities in Biology and its influence on secondary school students achievement.

1.3   AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF STUDY

        The main aim of the study is to assess practical activities in Biology and its influence on secondary school student’s achievement. Other specific objectives of the study include:

  1. to determine the factors affecting practical activities in Biology.
  2. to determine the influence of biology practical activities on secondary school students  achievement.
  3. to determine the difference in achievement between student taught using practical method and those taught using theory
  4. to determine the extent to which practical activities in biology affects male and female student academic achievement.
  5. to proffer possible solutions to the problems.
    1. RESEARCH QUESTIONS               

1      What are the factors affecting practical activities in Biology?

2      What is the influence of biology practical activities on secondary school student’s achievement?

3. What is the difference in achievement between student taught using practical method and those taught using theory?

4. What is the extent to which practical activities in biology affects male and female student academic achievement?

5      What are the possible solutions to the problems?

1.5   STATEMENT OF RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS

Hypothesis 1

H0:   Practical activity in Biology has no significant influence on secondary school student’s achievement.

H1:      Practical activity in Biology has a significant influence on secondary school student’s achievement.

Hypothesis 2

H0:   there is no difference in achievement between student taught using practical method and those taught using theory.

H1:      there is difference in achievement between student taught using practical method and those taught using theory.

1.6   SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY

        The study on assessing practical activities in Biology and its influence on secondary school student’s achievement will be of immense benefit to the entire secondary schools in the sense that 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 findings 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. It will also educate the curriculum experts and science educators, the findings of the study could form a basis for introducing practical innovations in teaching at all levels to promote practical based learning in schools and even in our teacher education programmes. Finally, the study will contribute to the body of existing literature and knowledge to this field of studies and basis for further research.

1.7   SCOPE OF STUDY

        The study on assessing practical activities in Biology and its influence is limited to secondary school student’s achievement.

1.8   LIMITATION OF STUDY

Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).

Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.

1.9   DEFINITION OF TERMS

Biology: Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their physical structure, chemical processes, molecular interactions, physiological mechanisms, development and evolution

Practical: concerned with the actual doing or use of something rather than with theory and ideas

Specimen: an individual animal, plant, piece of a mineral, etc. used as an example of its species or type for scientific study or display.

Achievement: a thing done successfully with effort, skill, or courage


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Paper Information

Format:ms word
Chapter:1-5
Pages:80
Attribute:Questionnaire, Data Analysis,abstract, table of content, references
Price:₦3,000
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