Availability And Utilization Of Instructional Materials For Learning Of Computer Studies

Project and Seminar Material for Computer Science Education

Availability And Utilization Of Instructional Materials For Learning Of Computer Studies


Abstract


This study sought to investigateavailability and utilization of instructional materials for learning of computer studies in Ikwo Local Government Area Of Ebonyi State. Survey research design was adopted for the study. The researcher developed three research questions to guide the study. Simple random sampling technique was used to select 730junior secondary school (JSS1) students from six public secondary schools in Ikwo Local Government Area. For the purpose of data collection, the researcher developed a 4-point, 25-item Likert type questionnaire called Computer Studies Questionnaire (CSQ). CSQ was subjected to both validity and reliability tests, for which an internal consistency of 0.96 was obtained. Mean and standard deviation were used for answering the research questions.

Findings from the result of the study revealed that Instructional materials for learning of Computer Studies junior secondary schools were either not available at all, or only available only to a low extent. The major materials available were textbooks and teacher-improvised materials like diagrams and constructed materials. Further findings also revealed that the frequency of improvisation of instructional materials for learning of Computer Studies in junior secondary schools was very low. Only few teachers bother with improvisation, and in most cases, the improvised materials are two-dimensional (such as pictures, charts, diagrams and posters) and three-dimensional materials (constructed/moulded specimens, models).

The study also revealed that even in cases where instructional materials were available, the extent of utilization was very low. The most utilized instructional materials were textbooks and teacher-improvised two-dimensional materials (pictures, charts, diagrams and diagrams). Based on the findings of the study, the researcher recommended that government should pay more attention to education and provision of instructional materials for learning of Computer Studies.

The researcher also recommended that in schools where the standardized or conventional materials are not available, teachers should endeavour to improvise instructional materials for learning of Computer Studies. It was also recommended that there is need to re-orient the Computer Studies teachers and indeed all science teachers on the provision and utilization of instructional materials.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

In recognition of the prominent role of Computer Science Education (CSE) in advancing knowledge and skills necessary for effective functioning in the modern world, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) was introduced into secondary education in Nigeria. Computer education is of paramount importance to national development and it is on this premise that the government of Nigeria sought to introduce computer studies in the education system from primary through to tertiary institutions. Shelly, Cashman and Vermaat (2008) says “computer is an electronic device, operating under the control of instructions stored in its own memory, that can accept data, process the data according to specified rules, produce results, and store the results for future use.

Hence, a computer can be defined as an electronic machine working under the control of stored programs, capable of receiving, storing, retrieving, communicating and processing data to produce information. The researcher wanted to establish whether or not teachers and students are considering the computer’s design when delivering and learning programming lessons. The instructors and the learners must understand how the computer works, how it is organised and its capabilities for them to possess the correct interpretation of the computer.

A computer forms the basic foundation for computer science and the knowledge that a computer is a programmable device or machine would motivate both teachers and learners to want to program the computer to solve their peculiar or particular problems. The understanding of the computer is in itself a giant leap forward as this arouse learners’ interest to solve problems and intrinsically motivates teachers and learners to psychologically prepare to tackle any challenges if present, which can hinder progress in subject mastery.

Olaitan (2009) stated that computer studies is a programme of study designed to give the students a thoroughly but general grounding in the ways computer are used. Computer studies equip the students with knowledge, skills and competencies that will enable them to operate computer efficiently.

Some of the objectives of computer studies in secondary school are as follows (Mundi, 2008):

  1. To develop a computer scientific attitude;
  2. To develop interest in an appreciation of the plan of life through the computer;
  3. To develop or help the child acquire a scientific method of solving problems;
  4. To help the child acquire a useful knowledge of computer science;
  5. Also help the child acquire a useful knowledge of computer scientific principles.

Computer science according to Brookshear (2013) is “a discipline that seeks to build a scientific foundation for such topics as computer design, computer programming, information processing algorithmic solutions problems, and the algorithmic process itself”. Brookshear (2013) continues to say computer science “provides the underpinnings for today’s computer applications as well as the foundations for tomorrow’s computing infrastructure”. Computer in education can be defined as the process of training and instructing children and young people on how to use and operate the computer to develop basic skills in computing and making contributions to the society. The computer science education curriculum content should be packaged in such a way that it will cover all the necessary area that supposedly affect the teaching and learning of computer science so that students’ performance in the course of study would be enhanced. Teachers and learners alike must approach computer science with an open mind for them to engage in a meaningful interaction during the processes of teaching and learning of computer science.

Any established school curriculum calls for means of implementing it in order to reach the objectives at the various levels. Methods of teaching and learning are planned activities involves in the presentation of the curriculum. The discussion, tutorial, lecture, discovery or demonstrations are examples of bringing the students into contact with the subject matter. The effectiveness of this contact demands activities and instructional materials. This may be in the form of symbolic and pictorial presentation, real objects and specimens, experiment and demonstration.

Imosie (2012) observed that one of the principles that teachers have to continually bear in mind is that man learns through his senses. He further stated that some students learn better by one or the other of the senses. To some, seeing is believing, to others, the senses of hearing, touch, smell and taste dominate in acquiring knowledge. For the intended learning to take place, the teacher must communicate effectively with the learners. In order to achieve the efficient communication between him and the learners, the teacher must understand something of the communication process to the extent that it will enhance a wide choice of his way of transmitting his message to his students. According to Mundi (2008), the best way of helping students to learn is to bring them face to face with the world, which the education intends to introduce to them. Using real things in real life situation does this. These real things used to enhance learning are called instructional materials.

Instructional materials are those materials, devices or techniques that help the teacher to make realistic approach to his Job. Whether real or substitutes, these representations have a common goal: they help the teacher to transmit the intended message effectively and meaningfully to the students so that the students receive, understand, retain and apply the experience gained to reach overall educational goals. Instructional materials are those things that enable students to have a mental picture of what has been taught and to retain the message in their memory for a very long time. Instructional materials include radio, television, chalkboard, charts, micro-projectors, still pictures, specimen, etc. It can be referred to as those things that the classroom teacher uses to impact knowledge to pupils in the classroom in order to achieve his objectives. Instructional materials refer to materials that are used to facilitate teaching and learning. It enables the teacher communicate ideas or concepts with ease as they appeal to many senses at a time (Mundi, 2008).

Teaching and learning of computer studies is more of practical training than theoretical. Teachers therefore, should arrange conditions under which students learn more rapidly and effectively. The teacher should select relevant instructional materials to facilitate his teaching and learning. Some instructional materials include computers, made up of the keyboard, mouse, monitor, processor, interface, printers and disk drives; laboratory, projected pictures, textbooks and chalk board. The use of the above instructional materials in teaching and learning computer studies in secondary schools cannot successfully accomplish its objectives without the availability of these instructional materials in schools. There is also additional demand on teachers’ time and competency.

Past studies have bemoaned the non-availability and/or non-utilization of instructional materials for learning of computer studies as well as other subjects in Nigeria. The level of availability of instructional materials for teaching and learning is very low (Adedijio, 2010; Ogoma, 2011; Nwafor & Eze, 2014; and Arum, 2015). Eya and Neboh (2011) identified four major types of instructional materials the public schools need, which include: two-dimensional materials, three-dimensional materials, audio materials and audio-visual materials. Studies have shown that in most Nigerian schools, materials such as all audio or audio-visual materials like cassette recorder, tape-recorded materials, radio, projectors, film strips, slides, transparencies, television and video recorders are not available and where they are provided, they are inadequate (Eya, 2013). Whereas instructional materials such as textbooks and two-dimensional materials are readily available in schools for learning of computer studies, three-dimensional materials, audio materials, audio visual, computers and computer laboratories are not available in most Nigerian secondary schools (Adedijio, 2010; Nwafor & Eze, 2014). This is a situation that seriously hampers the effective teaching and learning of computer studies and acquisition of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) skills among secondary school students in Nigeria (Akanbi, 2008).

Despite the usefulness of instructional materials in the classroom, Mkpa (2007) observes that many teachers are very reluctant to use them in their teaching. He posits that many teachers use instructional materials last at the time they were being examined or supervised for certification. Now that such supervision is rarely done, they do not bother to use the resources any longer. Corroborating Mkpa’s view, Enem (2012) opines that some teachers find it difficult to use instructional materials in delivering their lessons, probably due to lack of interest, resourcefulness or inadequate training on the need and how to use instructional materials. This goes a long way to reveal that the problem associated with the use of instructional materials in teaching is dove-tailed. The needed materials for computer studies instruction may not be available, and even if they are, teachers may not use them due to ignorance or unwillingness to put in extra effort to enhance their professional competence. This therefore calls for an investigation into the availability and extent of utilization of instructional materials in the learning of computer studies in junior secondary schools in Ikwo Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

The importance of the availability and use of instructional materials in learning of computer studies cannot be over-emphasized. When the instructional materials are made available in secondary schools and effectively utilized, students’ interest in learning is awakened and thus offers a good reality of experience, which stimulates self-activity on the part of the students.

Despite all these advantages, there are doubts as to whether there are available instructional materials in our secondary schools, and if available, whether they are utilized. Therefore, there is need for an investigation into teaching and learning computer studies in our secondary school system. Given this scenario, this study sought to ascertain whether instructional materials are available for learning of Computer Studies in junior secondary schools, and if they are, to what extent they are utilized to achieve the aims of Computer Studies instruction in junior secondary schools.


1.3 Purpose of the Study

The major purpose of the study is to ascertain the availability and utilization of instructional materials in learning of computer studies in junior secondary schools.

Specifically, the study sought to find out:

  1. If instructional materials for learning of Computer Studies are available in junior secondary schools.
  2. The frequency with which Computer Studies teachers improvise instructional materials for learning of Computer Studies in junior secondary schools.
  3. The extent to which instructional materials are utilized for learning of Computer Studies in junior secondary schools.

1.4 Significance of the Study

This study shall be of benefit to:

Government:

To have knowledge of schools that are lacking these instructional materials and make efforts to provide them.

Students:

For when instructional material are available and utilized, learning becomes easier.

Computer Studies Teachers:

Who will utilize the result of this study in making their lessons more simple, interesting and understandable.

Parents:

The results of this study would provide additional information on which schools to send their children after primary schools. The recommendations of this study will go a long way towards making educators look inwards in order to solve the problem of teaching and learning computer in secondary schools.


1.5 Scope of the Study

The study was carried out in secondary school in Ikwo Local Government Area of Ebonyi State, south-east Nigeria. The study focused on ascertaining the availability of instructional materials and their extent of utilization for learning of computer studies in junior secondary schools within Ikwo Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.


1.6 Research Questions

The following research questions were drawn to guide the study:

  1. Are instructional materials for learning of Computer Studies available in junior secondary schools?
  2. How often do teachers improvise instructional materials for learning of Computer Studies in junior secondary schools?
  3. To what extent are instructional materials utilized for learning of Computer Studies in junior secondary schools?

1.7 Research Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses were stated for the study.

  1. The use of instructional materials will not have significant influence on the teaching of Computer studies in senior secondary schools.
  2. The use of instructional material will not have significant influence on secondary school students’ learning of Computer studies.
  3. There will be no significant difference in the performance of students in Computer studies due to the use of instructional materials.

1.8 Definition of Terms

The relevant terms below were operationally defined relative to their usage in this study.

Effect:

This is the change (outcome) that is brought about in a person (s) or something by another person (s) or thing; that is the way in which an event, action or person changes someone or something.

Academic Performance:

This is regarded as the display of knowledge attained or skills, shown in the school subjects such achievements are indicated by test scores or by marks assigned by teachers. It is the school evaluation of students’ classroom work as quantified on the basis of marks or grades.

Utilisation:

The act of using something to achieve a purpose

Instructional Material:

What the teacher uses to make the lesson more interesting and understandable.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations

This chapter discusses the finding of this study in relation to the hypotheses formulated and tested. The conclusions are drawn based on the results.


5.1 Summary

The discussions of the findings are based on the variables which formed the basic of the hypotheses tested in chapter four.

The purpose of the study includes:

  1. To examine the influence of the use of instructional materials in the teaching of Computer studies in secondary schools;
  2. To ascertain the extend to which secondary school students’ learning of Computer studies can be influenced by the use of instructional materials; and
  3. To determine whether there will be any difference in the performance of secondary school students in Computer studies due to the use of instructional materials.

The finding after testing hypothesis one indicates that the use of instructional materials will significantly influence Computer studies teaching in secondary schools. This result cconlurs with Ajelabi (2000) where he says that instructional materials lend support and authenticity to whatever the teacher says. This enables the learner to confirm or refute the teacher’s assertion. Sharing the above view is Kay (1981) who says that instructional materials help the teacher to teach more effectively.

The finding after testing hypothesis two indicates that the use of instructional materials will have significant positive influence on secondary school students learning of Computer studies.

This result agrees with the assertion of Aina (1982) where he says that the use of instructional materials for teaching enriches the classroom work and contributes directly and indirectly to effective teaching and learning. Ajelabi (2000) supports Aina (1982) when he says that instructional materials help in focusing attention and motivating learners. He further says that when appropriate instructional materials are used to introduce, develop or conclude a teaching – learning session, learner’s interest are aroused and developed throughout the lesson.

The finding after testing hypothesis three indicates that there will be a significant positive difference in the performance of secondary school students in Computer studies when they are taught the subject with instructional materials. The use of instructional materials in the teaching and learning of Computer studies obviously improves the performance of students. Onyejemezi (1984) supports positive performance when instructional materials are used for teaching and learning more permanent.

Maduekwe (2000) supports Onyejemezi (1984) when he says that the use of instructional materials discourage not learning. Further moreOremeji (2002) asserts that instructional information materials are of high value in imparting information, clarifying difficult and abstract concepts, stimulating thoughts, sharpening observation, creating interest and satisfying individual difference. All in all, the use of instructional cannot be over –emphasized as it forms the integral component of classroom teaching.


5.2 Conclusion

As a result of evidence gathered from the analysis of data, interpretation of result and discussion of findings of this study, the following conclusions are reached.

The use of appropriate instructional materials helps teachers to make their lession clarifying.

The use of instructional materials helps the students to understand their lesson very well and also retain what is taught. It also discourages rote learning.

There is difference between lesson taught with instructional materials and those taught without instructional materials. There are positive and improved results when students are taught with instructional materials.

Most school do not provide adequate instructional materials for use in the school, thus making the teachers handicapped.

Most teachers find it very tasking improvising instructional materials.

In conclusion, the researcher strongly believes that the best way to drive home teachers point during teaching and learning encounter is through the use of appropriate instructional materials.


5.3 Implication of the Findings for Curriculum Planning and Education Administration

Computer studies plays on important role in the social, political, economic, educational, industrial and technological development of Nigeria. The development of the country in all ramifications revolves upon a pivot. It is central to every developmental process and it is a potent instrument for national development. The importance and centrality of Computer studies is not only recognizable by national policy on education but also the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria.

This pride of place enjoyed by Computer studies makes it a must that students should be grounded in Computer studies right from an early stage of life. The teachers have roles to play by making their lessons explicit, understandable and interesting. This could be achieved through the use of appropriate instructional materials. This connotes therefore, that in curriculum planning and Education Administration, students should be encouraged while a more practical and result oriented Computer studies teaching and learning process be evolved. The language should be given deserved position and attention in school curriculum and timetable.


5.4 Recommendations

In line with the findings of this study, the researcher recommends the following:

Schools should provide enough instructional materials to enable teachers clarify their lesson. Adequate infrastructure facilities and conclusive atmosphere are Sine Qua Non for effective learning and retention of what is learnt.

Schools should send their Computer studies teachers to seminars and workshops in order to up date their knowledge.

Teachers should be encouraged by the school by paying incentives. They should be upgraded when necessary. This will enable them to improvise instructional materials for teaching.

Computer studies teachers should conduct the teaching and learning of the subject effectively, efficiently and interestingly. Their teachers should be resourceful, knowledgeable and vary his teaching method at all times. The teacher should ensure appropriate use of instructional materials during their lesson.

Teachers should try to improvise instructional materials so that the students will benefit-maximally.

Parents should provide adequate and necessary learning materials in Computer studies. This will encourage their wards to read.

Students should read extensively worth while publications, journals, newspapers, listen to radio and television news in Computer studies, in addition to their recommended books. This will widen their knowledge to be able to agree and refute what the teacher teaches them. This extensive reading will make them avid readers and fluent speakers of Computer studies Maduekwe (1998). This will drastically reduce the mass failure in Computer studies.

In conclusion, teachers are at the centre of educational instruction. They should strive hard to make their teaching very effective. Akande (1989) asserts “the medical doctor buries his mistake, the engineer dies with his mistake but the whole society perishes with the mistake of the teacher. This shows how valuable a teacher is in the growth of an individual and the society at large. Then the teachers of Computer studies and all other teacher should make imperative to use instructional materials during teaching so that the learners will be influenced positively.


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