The Effectiveness Of Discussion Method In Teaching And Learning Social Studies In Some Selected Junior Secondary Schools In Nigeria (A Case Study Of Gwagwalada Area Council)
The study investigated the effectiveness of Discussion method in teaching and learning social studies in some selected junior secondary schools in Nigeria. Some junior secondary schools in Gwagwalada Area council were randomly selected for the study. Questionnaires were given to 100 staff and 100 students of the selected schools. The hypothesis postulated for the research was tested using chi-square as a statistical tool at a 0.05 level of significance. The findings indicated that a higher mean score of students taught reading comprehension using the discussion method as compared with those taught using the conventional method. Based on this finding, the study recommended that teachers should be encouraged to use discussion method alongside the conventional method to enrich their reading comprehension lessons. Curriculum planners and textbook writers should equally provide topical issues/discussion topics before, during and after every reading task to make reading comprehension lessons more participatory, meaningful, purposeful, exciting, enjoyable and pleasurable.
1.1 Background of the Study
The basic objective or goal of teaching at any level of education is to bring a fundamental change on the learner (Tebabal & Kahssay, 2011). To enhance the process of knowledge transmission, teachers are advised to apply appropriate teaching methods that best suit specific goals and purposes. In the traditional epoch, many teaching practitioners widely applied teacher-centered methods to impart knowledge to learners as against student-centered methods. Until today, questions about the effectiveness of teaching methods on student learning ability have consistently raised considerable interest in the thematic field of educational research (Hightower, 2011). Moreover, research on teaching and learning constantly endeavour to examine the extent to which different teaching methods especially the discussion method of teaching enhance growth in student learning. Quite remarkably, regular poor academic performance by the majority students is fundamentally linked to application of ineffective teaching methods by teachers to impact knowledge to learners (Adunola, 2011). Substantial research on the effectiveness of teaching methods indicates that the quality of teaching is often reflected by the academic achievements of learners. According to Ayeni (2011), teaching is a process that involves bringing about desirable changes in learners so as to achieve specific outcomes. In order for the method used for teaching to be effective, Adunola (2011) maintains that teachers need to be conversant with numerous teaching strategies especially the discussion method of teaching that take recognition of the magnitude of complexity of the concepts to be covered.
There have been debates over time to establish whether teaching is a skill or an art. Some students believe in their teacher’s performance as quite brilliant, others get motivated and excited with the presentation and teaching. For some others, their teachers bore them making the lesson dry hard and leaving them more confused. All of these enthusiasms and opinions are eventually translated into students’ learning ability. However, what is pertinent in teaching and learning is the ability to apply skills to the art of teaching with sole objective of enhancing learning. A blend of skills and art in teaching is also manifested in clearly structure lessons and manner of presentation. A teacher who can effectively do this is an active constructor of learning, who can, and should transmit knowledge, but should allow students voices to be heard as contributing members of class. This is typical in a discussion class. The teacher teaches, asks questions, and in doing so, he hears his voice. But he does not stop at that. In hearing his own voice, he begins to appreciate the need to hear the voices of those he teaches. This elicits a more participatory teaching, which can stimulate imaginative and conceptual thinking amongst students.
1.2 Statement of the General Problem
The poor performance of secondary school students in both internal and external examinations has been a cause for serious concerns with many questioning the teaching method adopted in teaching which in most cases are not students friendly which at the end of the day results to poor or average performances as a result of difficulty in learning as regards the teaching methods adopted in secondary schools. These continuous poor performances have resulted to the poor development of secondary schools in Nigeria.
1.3 Objective of the Study
The major aim of the study is to examine the effectiveness of discussion method in teaching and learning of social studies in selected junior secondary schools in Nigeria. Other specific objectives of the study include;
- To examine the teaching methods adopted in selected junior secondary schools in Nigeria.
- To determine the influence of teaching methods on students’ academic performances in social studies.
- To assess the importance of adopting friendly teaching method in teaching social studies in junior secondary schools.
- To recommend ways of further improving students learning ability in junior secondary schools in Nigeria.
1.4 Research Hypotheses
- Ho: There is no relationship between discussion method and students’ performance in social studies.
- Hi: There is a relationship between discussion method and students’ performance in social studies.
- Ho: There is no significant improvement in students’ understanding of social studies with discussion method of teaching and learning of social studies.
- Hi: There is significant improvement in students’ understanding of social studies with discussion method of teaching and learning of social studies
1.5 Significance of the Study
The study would be of immense importance to the development of secondary schools and also in enhancing students learning ability as it would reveal the effectiveness of discussion method in teaching and learning social studies in Nigeria. The research would also be beneficial to students, researchers and scholars who are interested in developing further research on the subject matter.
1.6 Scope and Limitation of the Study
This study is primary concerned with the effectiveness of discussion method in teaching and learning social studies in some selected junior secondary schools in Nigeria. This study/project work covers some selected junior secondary schools in Gwagwalada area council in Abuja.The researcher encountered some constraints, which limited the scope of the study. These constraints include but are not limited to the following
a) Availability of Research Material:
The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study
The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.
1.7 Definition of Terms
Discussion methods are a variety of forums for open-ended, collaborative exchange of ideas among a teacher and students or among students for the purpose of furthering students thinking, learning, problem solving, understanding, or literary appreciation.
Is an instruction or delivering a particular skill or subject or something that someone tells you to do. For Teaching in this case may refer to showing or explaining to a student how to do something
Is the process of acquiring new, or modifying existing, knowledge, behaviors, skills, values, or preferences. The ability to learn is possessed by humans, animals, and some machines; there is also evidence for some kind of learning in some plants.
1.8 Organization of the Study
This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows
- Chapter one is concerned with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study.
- Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature.
- Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study.
- Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
- Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study
Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation
It is important to ascertain that the objective of this study was to ascertain a critical analysis of the effectiveness of discussion method in teaching and learning of social studies in some selected junior secondary schools in Nigeria.
In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations are made, which in the opinion of the research will be of benefit in addressing the challenges of teaching and learning of social studies in junior secondary schools in Nigeria.
This study aimed at having a critical analysis of the effectiveness of discussion method in teaching and learning of social studies in some selected junior secondary schools in Nigeria. Four objectives were raised. These objectives include: To examine the teaching methods adopted in selected junior secondary schools in Nigeria, to determine the influence of teaching methods on students’ academic performances in social studies, to assess the importance of adopting friendly teaching method in teaching social studies in junior secondary schools and to recommend ways of further improving students learning ability in junior secondary schools in Nigeria.
Based on the above findings pertaining to the objectives of the study the following conclusions are drawn.
The teacher is responsible for helping students get a better understanding of texts by the type of reading activities they encourage before, during and after the reading exercise. The teacher needs to be educated on how to effectively and efficiently teach reading to make the lesson participatory, meaningful, functional and pleasurable. The researcher is of the opinion that the reading problems of secondary school students cannot be solved unless teachers and curriculum planners adjust to the needs of the students by using appropriate and effective teaching methods in reading comprehension lessons.
- In view of the effectiveness of discussion method in the teaching of social studies as revealed by the research, the researcher therefore recommends that it be tried out in other subjects and levels.
- Further study may be conducted to examine gender differences and locality differences in the use of different teaching methods.
- Creativity process should be integrated into the curricula of social studies teacher education of tertiary institutions in Nigeria;
- The urgent need and use of communication technologies in classroom instruction is a challenging task to social studies educators, the public, government, and stakeholders in education and it must be provided for effective teaching and learning in social studies.
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