An Assessment Of The Influence Of Overpopulated Class Room In Secondary Schools In Lagos State

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An Assessment Of The Influence Of Overpopulated Class Room In Secondary Schools In Lagos State

Chapter One


1.1 Background of the Study

Since the ingrained firmness of western education in Nigeria, It has encountered myriads of issues (Ijaiya, 1999). Most Nigerian administrations have been fighting with these difficulties throughout the colonial or post-independence period. It has led in the setting up of several committees (e.g. the Asuby commission of 1960; the 1969 curriculum conference; the Education Reform Committee of 2006 etc) to evaluate Nigeria’s educational challenges and offer recommendations.

Specifically, among the difficulties confronting the Nigerian educational system are huge and inadequately resourced classrooms. The issues of teacher scarcity and classroom shortage are intricately linked, and when these are paired with increasing student enrollment, the outcome is over-crowded classrooms (Ijaiya 1999). This has become a reality that educators must view as a problem and must tackle openly. The social-demand for formal education in Nigeria led in an upswing in school enrollment with a significant rise in class size, consequently leading in a high teacher-pupil ratio. Class size is a key influence in affecting the accomplishment of educational goals and objectives. The ideal student population in a single classroom should not exceed 40 pupils per teacher. Teaching and learning as well as classroom management become unproductive since teachers are prone to increased stress in controlling the pupils.

The introduction of UBE in the nation underlines the reality that instructors are being burdened with increased duty since many schools have grown overcrowded. Overpopulated classrooms are regarded unconductive for both teachers and students whenever it comes to the problem of continuous assessment marking and the capacity to offer targeted attention to those requiring additional aid. When teaching massive groups of students, there is a risk of learners copying and cheating; students’ negative attitudes against learning new things; disciplinary issues; students utilizing their mother tongues when requested to work in pairs or groups; noise; and a lack of opportunities for improving an individual’s communication abilities; challenges of boredom in teaching and testing; and teachers dominance. All things impact the work performance of teachers.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

According to Odorah(2015) class size is a key contributing cause to the supposed teachers’ ineffectiveness non many schools in Nigeria. For instance, it has been noticed that pupils may be too tough to regulate by instructors in many of the huge classrooms owing to excessive crowding of student in these courses (Akudu, 2007). (Akudu, 2007). In other words, teachers lose their capacity to achieve or maintain effective teaching in a congested classroom, and this issue of high class size in secondary schools has been ascribed to numerous causes, including the inclusion of too many subjects on the secondary school timetable, which inevitably has given birth to accommodation of all the subjects on the school timetable, coupled with a dearth of trained teaching professionals to teach these subjects. Another challenge is the problem of insufficient teaching resources such as graphs, images, charts and so on which are highly important for successful instructional delivery in schools. These resources are meant to support the process of teaching and learning, assuming they are effectively given. Even while teachers tend to differ in their views towards teaching large classes, most of them seem not to be well inclined to the teaching of large classes and as it is generally known.

In Nigeria, schools are extremely crowded and the national policy of education established an ideal ratio of teacher to child in a secondary school as 1:40 maximum. This research is thus interested in identifying the key challenges presented by overpopulated classrooms in Nigeria, with a view to proposing solutions that might assist to mitigate the problems.

1.3 Purpose of the Study

The major aim of this study is to assess the influence of overpopulated class room in secondary schools in Lagos state.

The objective is therefore sub-outlined below;

  1. Identify the causes of overpopulated class room.
  2. Identify the implications of overpopulated classroom.
  3. Ascertain whether overpopulated class room affects effective classroom management.
  4. Ascertain whether overpopulated classroom affects effective teaching and learning in secondary schools.

1.4 Research Question

The study will be guided by the following questions;

  1. What are the causes of overpopulated class room in secondary schools?
  2. What are the implications of overpopulated classroom in secondary schools?
  3. Does overpopulated class room affect effective classroom management?
  4. Does overpopulated classroom affect effective teaching and learning in secondary schools?

1.5 Significance of the Study

The findings from this research can help the government in resource allocation which includes human, financial material and physical resources. School administrators will know the resources needed and how to administer the resources given. Teachers have direct relationship with the students and know when overpopulation affects how they impact knowledge. PTA and the community which are agents of school community relations can help fund building projects, outsource part time teachers etc. All these will help in implementing the stated policies as regards the recommended teacher. Pupil ratio, in order to achieve educational goals and objectives.

1.6 Scope of the Study

The study is focused on the influence of overpopulated class room in secondary schools in Lagos state. The study is further narrowed to the causes of overpopulated class room, the implications of overpopulated classroom, how overpopulated class room affects effective classroom management, and how overpopulated classroom affects effective teaching and learning in secondary schools. The respondents for this study will include both teachers and students in 2 selected secondary schools in Badagry, Lagos State.

1.7 Limitation of the Study

Like in every human endeavour, the researcher encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. Insufficient funds tend to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection, which is why the researcher resorted to a limited choice of sample size. More so, the researcher simultaneously engaged in this study with other academic work. As a result, the amount of time spent on research will be reduced.

1.8 Definition of Terms

Some terms specific to this study have been defined below:

Student Overpopulation:

Any classroom above the recommended teacher to students’ ratio of 1:40 is considered overpopulation.


The process of giving lessons in a classroom. It is also the process of passing on knowledge, skills, and attitudes

Job Performance:

The way a teacher carries out his/her responsibilities which include teaching, giving assignment and marking.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Do overcrowded classrooms affect the performance of students at secondary level?

Jehangir Shah (2012) investigates the impact of overcrowded classrooms on the performance of the students at secondary level. According to him overcrowded classes effect the efficiency of the teachers. 

What are the effects of overpopulation in the classroom?

Overpopulation is a serious problem in a classroom situation, it leads to congestion of the classroom and this adversely affects learning and performance. Nevertheless, the certain measure has to be taken as a panacea or to curb overpopulation.

How does classroom shape affect student’s academic performance?

Through different researches that student s’ academic performance is greatly affected by the physical characteristics of classroom. According to Earthman, G 2004:18, School building in which students pass considerable time has great influence upon students’ academic performance.

Is overcrowded class room causing academic failure in Pakistan?

A survey was conducted by the SDPI (Sustainable development policy institute) 1998. The survey declared t hat overcrowded class room is the major factor responsible for academic failure in Pakistan. Most experts agree that in small class teachers have more opportunities for individualized interaction with students.

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