Effects Of Four Mode Of Application Techniques On Academic Achievement And Retention Of Biology Student In Kano Municipal Education Zone, Nigeria

Biology Education Project Material

Effects Of Four Mode Of Application Techniques On Academic Achievement And Retention Of Biology Student In Kano Municipal Education Zone, Nigeria


Abstract


This study investigated the effects of four mode of application techniques on academic achievement and retention of biology student in Kano Municipal Education Zone, Nigeria. To guide the study, nine research questions were posed and nine hypotheses were formulated and tested at 0.05% probability level. Quasi-experimental design was adopted for the study, specifically the non- equivalent control group design. The study was carried out in Tarauni Local Government Area of Kano State. A sample size of one hundred and thirty nine (139) SSII Biology students were used for the study. This sample was drawn using purposive sampling technique. Two groups of students were used for this study, they are experimental and control groups. The experimental group were taught using 4MAT and the control group was taught using the conventional lecture method. The treatment lasted for six weeks. Three instruments were used for data collection in this study namely: Biology Achievement Test (BAT), Multiple Intelligence Inventory (MII) Students and Teacher Interview Schedule (STIS). The same test (BAT) was used as pretest, posttest, and retention test. At each stage after the pretest, the items were reshuffled. The research questions were answered using mean and standard deviation, while Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 level of significant. The results of the study revealed that there was a statistically significant main effect for instructional methods on mean achievement score of students in biology F(7, 138) = 11.500, p<.000, there was a statistically significant main effect for instructional methods on mean retention score of students in biology F(7, 138) = 43.160, p<.000, In line with the findings of the study, the educational implications of the findings were highlighted and the recommendations were equally proffered among others that science teachers, science educators and authors and textbook writers should adopt 4MAT when teaching or writing of textbooks to enhance students’ achievement, retention and Multiple Intelligence. The limitations of the study and suggestions for further studies were equally made.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Biology is a branch of natural science that deals with the study of living organisms, their structures, functions, evolution, distribution and interrelationships. Biology occupies a unique position in the secondary school education curriculum because of its importance as science of life. In Nigeria, the secondary school Biology curriculum is designed to continue students’ investigation into natural phenomena, deepen students’ understanding and interest in biological sciences and to encourage students’ ability to apply scientific knowledge to everyday life (Federal Ministry of Education, 2009). Biology is an important science subject and stands as the bedrock to the learning of other science courses like Medicine, Pharmacy, Nursing, Biochemistry, Genetics and Agriculture that are of great economic importance to the nation. Besides the importance of Biology as the science of life, it is one of the science subjects that are mostly preferred by many students in secondary schools. For this reason, Biology has a very high enrolment of students in the external examination (West African Examination Council, 2011).

The objectives of the Biology curriculum according to the National Policy on Education is to prepare students to acquire: adequate laboratory and field skill in Biology, meaningful and relevant knowledge of Biology, the ability to apply scientific knowledge to everyday life in matters of personal and community health and agriculture and reasonable and functional scientific attitude. In pursuance of the above stated objectives of biology curriculum, the contents and context of the curriculum place emphasis on field studies, guided discovery, laboratory techniques and skills along with conceptual attitude (Federal Ministry of Education, 2007). To achieve these objectives of the Biology curriculum, emphasis should be placed on the teaching and learning process in other to allow students develop their highest potentials (Pratoomtong, 2011). Caine (2002) posited that good teachers should organise classroom activities that emphasize on active role of the learners to construct their own knowledge and understanding through interacting with the environment around them. However, these activities should be interesting to learners and appropriate for their developmental level so that they can use their whole brain to participate in them, which will in turn improve their academic achievement.

Studies have shown that Biology teaching does not always employ effective instructional approaches in teaching the subject (Nwagbo, 2001 and Nwosu, 2001). This has led to situations where students cannot be able to apply the knowledge of biology into real life situations. Agame (2010) posited that in most secondary schools, teaching methods are mainly based on inappropriate instructional approach, which requires teachers to give explanation or demonstration while students usually focus on textbook reading, note taking and memorization of facts. Moreover, test results in biology shows that learning ability of the students taught in this way falls below expectation. Evidence has shown that there is high rate of failure in Biology examinations, which could be traceable to the quality of teaching (More, 2003). The report of West African Examination Council (WAEC) on the Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination (SSCE) (2007-2010) on students’ achievement in Nigeria revealed low academic achievement in biology WAEC Chief Examiner’s report (2007-2012). This poor achievement of students in biology at the senior school certificate examination leaves one in doubt about the effectiveness of instructional approaches employed by the biology teachers for the teaching and learning of biology Nwagbo (2001) stated that most biology teachers use the conventional lecture methods in teaching of the subjects. Nwosu (2001) also stated that the use of lecture methods does not allow for active learner participation in the classroom. In order to enhance students’ achievement and active participation in the learning process in Biology, much attention should be placed on student’s learning styles and their impact on the teaching and learning process.

Learning style is an individual’s unique ways of perceiving and processing information. According to Reynolds (2007), learning style is an individual’s natural or habitual pattern of acquiring and processing information in learning situation. The notion of learning style and its implications in education is not new in the education system (Reynolds, 2007). Learning style specifically deals with each individual’s characteristic styles of acquiring knowledge (Byrne, 2002). Learning style is also an individual’s special way of understanding and applying information gathered during the teaching and learning process. Dunn and Griggs (2000) stated that serious consideration is rarely paid to the existence of differences in learning styles and their impact on teaching and learning, with few attempts being made to systematically incorporate learning styles into teaching. Ubah (2012) reported that knowledge of the existing learning styles among students could increase their academic success. Reynolds (2007) proposed that matching learning styles and instructional methods could lead to improved learning. More importantly, Rochford (2004) and Ingham (2003) posited that students’ knowledge of their learning style preferences could improve students’ rate of retention of information. Students preferentially take in and process information in different ways: by seeing and hearing, reflecting and acting, reasoning logically and intuitively; and analyzing and visualizing. This shows that every student has a peculiar learning style.

In the classroom, students come in with their different learning styles and all the dominant learning styles needs to be addressed during the learning process (Merrill, 2003). When teachers are considering the design of a learning process for active learning classroom environment, there is need for them to be aware of the impact of learning styles of students to create an enabling environment for learning to take place. Brown (2003) stated that if instructional design match students’ learning style preferences, it could have a positive impact on students’ achievement. In addition, Roy (2007) stated that recognizing students’ learning style could help teachers to develop course structures that will provide a better fit between instructional goals and student’ ‘learning style preferences. The importance of recognising students learning styles in classroom learning environment can be highlighted by stating that the teacher places emphasis on intuition, feeling, sensing, and imagination, in addition to traditional skills of analysis, reason and sequential problem solving. The teacher designs instructional methods to connect with different learning styles, using various combinations of experience, reflection, conceptualisation and experimentation. Finally, the teacher employs variety of assessment techniques, focusing on each of the different learning styles and the development of the whole brain capacity (Brown, 2003).

Structurally, the human brain is made up of right and left hemisphere. The human brain functions in many ways; it acts as two brains (right/left) hemisphere and it is the way individuals experience the world around them. Brain research has found out that the two hemispheres of the brain (left/right) process information differently, both hemispheres are equally important in terms of whole brain functioning and individuals rely more on one information-processing mode than the other, especially when they approach new learning (Chatuporn, 2002). The left hemisphere is dominant with regard to language and logical processing, while the right hemisphere handles spatial perception. There is evidence that each brain hemisphere has its own distinct functions, a division referred to as lateralization (Chatuporn, 2002). The left hemisphere is serial, analytic, rational, systematic and verbal. Analysis and planning are key strategies in the left hemisphere.

In this mode, problems are solved by looking at the parts and sequence is critical. The right hemisphere on the other hand is global, visual and holistic; it is able to see patterns and connections. The right mode processing seeks patterns and solves problems by looking at the whole picture. Intuition, belief and opinion are key processing strategies of the right hemisphere.

To illustrate the importance of whole-brain functioning, Campbell (2008) remarked on how the human mind forms its notion by mixing up its own nature with the nature of things around them. For example, when scientists engage in explicit theory development, they observe and use logical reasoning. However, during the discovering phase that must precede the definitive process of creating a new theory, they often use illogical reasoning which reflects their own subtle biases. The reality is that individuals approach learning with the whole mind, intuition, belief and subjectivity intact.

The above line of thought on brain hemisphericity and the knowledge of learning style led to a research by Bernice McCarthy in 1972 about the best way to teach learners in a classroom. This brought about the development of the Four Mode Application Techniques (4MAT). 4MAT is an instructional model that provides a systematic approach to organising and delivering instructions in a manner that addresses the learning styles and hemispheric preferences of students. 4MAT is an eight-step instructional model that capitalizes on individual learning styles and brain dominance processing preferences. Inherent in the 4MAT are two major premises: one is that people have major learning style and hemispheric (right mode and left mode) processing preferences; secondly, teachers should design and use multiple instructional strategies in a systematic framework to teach to these preferences in other to improve teaching and learning.

In 4MAT lesson, there is more interactive exchange of information than just giving formation; there is greater appreciation for diversity as a positive outcome to enhance learning and there is deeper sense of responsibility for student during the learning process. The 4MAT is a conceptual framework of teaching and learning that is grounded in the works of John Dewey (experiential learning), Carl Jung (theory of individualization), and, most directly, David Kolb (experiential learning theory) (McCarthy 1987). 4MAT identifies four interrelated learning styles based on how individuals perceive and process new information. Its premise is that individuals learn primarily in one of the four different, but complementary ways based on how they perceive and process information (McCarthy & McCarthy, 2006). McCarthy identified these four learning styles as Imaginative Learners (Type One Learners); Analytic Learners (Type Two Learners); Common Sense Learners (Type Three Learners); and Dynamic Learners (Type Four Learners), based on Kolb’s experiential learning theory thus, divergent, assimilative, convergent and accommodative learning style respectively.

Imaginative Learners (Type 1) learn best through personal experience. They benefit from opportunities to find meaning in what they are learning and they enjoy discussing their beliefs, feelings, and opinions with others. The type I learners are reflective in nature, learn primarily through dialogue and are skilled at perspective taking and are sensitive to the needs of others. Analytic Learners (Type 2) approach learning in a logical, organized manner by examining details and specifics. As students, they often excel in a traditional classroom setting. Analytic Learners enjoy reflecting on new ideas and connecting new learning to other information they know to be true. The type 2 learners are logical in nature, enjoy formulating theories and models, strive for precision and prefer teachers that do so as well. Common Sense Learners (Type 3) learn by doing. When presented with new information they immediately focus on practical applications. These learners are active, preferring to get right to work in the classroom and dislike assignments that do not have an obvious purpose or application. These learners learn best when provided with hands-on, experiential learning opportunities. Dynamic Learners (Type 4) are active learners, enjoy taking risks and learn primarily through self-discovery. These learners like to connect their learning to things that matter in their lives. They enjoy synthesizing information and applying their learning in new ways. When properly sequenced, the dynamic learning styles provide a natural framework for teaching and learning. Dynamic learners prefer doing and feeling things, they seek hidden possibilities, they explore learning by trial and error and they engage in self-discovery (McCarthy, 1983).

These four types of learners would learn best if they are taught how to learn like each other at the same time in other to make learning successful, i.e. the type one learner has to learn how type two, three, and four learners learn. The teachers have to travel the 4MAT cycle with a spin to fully engage all the learners in the activities of the four diverse learners. The use of 4MAT teaching model has been supported by research in elementary and secondary and more recently in higher education classrooms (Wilkerson and White, 1988; Blair and Judah, 1990). 4MAT also integrates learning style with brain-based processing strategies and provides systematic model of planning instruction, which assumes that individuals learn in different but, identifiable ways and that engagement with a variety of diverse learning activities result in higher levels of motivation and performance. 4MAT model moves beyond enhancing students’ self-awareness of their learning strengths and weaknesses, to a framework students can use to adapt to the variety of teaching styles and disciplines required of today’s college students. Based on this idea McCarthy developed the 4MAT system and added two new views to Kolb’s model concerning the way the brain works (right/left mode) (McCarthy, 1990). The 4MAT system is a teaching model based on research on brain function to create a practical teaching method for maximizing human learning and potential.

Nevertheless, with 4MAT, teachers can facilitate critical dialogue to have students make interpersonal and intrapersonal cognitive development for themselves, by themselves and with each other (Campe, 2006). Learners will therefore work in small groups or at times work alone and use their intelligences; visual, interpersonal, musical, bodily kinaesthetic, intrapersonal, linguistic, natural and logical to work at their own pace and create, build, evaluate and extend their learning (McCarthy, 2006). Holistically 4MAT instructional model relies upon learning loop, which includes four types of students introduced by McCarthy and the right and left hemispheres of the brain, which makes learning a constant process. According to the model, the loops called 4MAT impeller or 4MAT quadrant is divided into eight steps and it is designed as a process that is made up of activities, which are appropriate for the four types of students (learning style) (McCarthy, 2005). In this loop, while the teacher is going around the impeller, the teacher teaches according to learner’s personal differences by utilizing the educational strategies that are appropriate for each student such as experimentation, group discussion, classroom interaction, lecture and other strategies that can stimulate the activities of the two hemispheres (Brent, 2005).

Consequently, teachers should design a framework, which encompasses the 4MAT learning wholly and considers the individual differences among the students (McCarthy, 2003, 2005; Yenice and Saracaloglu, 2009). 4MAT can be best applied when the skills of the teachers are developed and the education is structured in a way that is suitable for multiple methods to be used, so that the students will receive every style of learning (Yenice and Saracaloglu, 2009). 4MAT requires teachers to present teaching appropriately for each of the four learning styles so that they can develop other learning styles, use their own learning styles well and become successful.

McCarthy concluded that the full cycle of a lesson based on 4MAT would include eight activities, accommodating each of the four types of learning using both left and right brain dominance in each quadrant. Such lessons highlight the style of each learner for some fraction of the whole, and rotation between left and right brain activities gives prime time to the different orientations, which would lead to whole-brain performance. By superimposing right and left hemispheric preferences on each of the four quadrants, eight step cycles is formed. According to the model, if the teacher follows the cycle, learning style and hemispheric preference of each individual would be addressed at least one fourth of the instructional times. During other parts of the cycle, the learner will be “stretched” on learning how to solve other problems (McCarthy, 2006). 4MAT system engages students to construct their own idea and promotes multiple intelligences of students. When using the model, teachers can implement a number of steps in their teaching. The eight steps involved in 4MAT include; connect, explain, image, inform, practice, extend, refine and perform. As the lesson proceeds, instructions that can stimulate the function of the two hemispheres of the brain are introduced into the lesson. When using 4MAT model, learning activities are structured in a way that it will address the eight steps as proposed by the model. To this effect, the present study sort to find out if the model could enhance students’ academic achievement.

Academic achievement deals with the extent students have gained from a particular course of instruction. According to Omachi (2000) achievement is the scholastic standing of a student’s performance at a given moment. It has to do with the successful accomplishment of goal(s). The purpose of testing an achievement is to help the teacher and the students evaluate and estimate the degree of success attained in learning a given concept. It is also useful in testing the retention of information and skill. It is equally appropriate in determining the efficiency of instruction. One of the issues at stake in education today is students’ achievement measure in relation to teaching and the overall success of learning outcome. Hassan (2006) pointed out that effective learning and sound academic achievement contributes to national development. It is something of great importance to parents, teachers and students themselves; even the larger society is aware of the long term effects of high and low academic achievement since the product of schools are expected to shape the destiny of the society. They can only do this, if they are able to retain what they have been taught in school. Therefore, this study is also interested in finding out the effect of 4MAT on students’ retention in biology.

Retention is an individual’s ability to remember and recall information, materials and experiences learned over time. This acquired materials in the mind need to be preserved in form of images for knowledge to develop. When a stimulating situation occurs, retained images are revived or reproduced to make memorization possible (Morris, 2000). Biology concepts therefore, need to be presented to the learners in a way or method that touches their sub consciousness, which can trigger quick recalling of the concept being taught or learnt. Okeke (2004) stated that teachers could improve retention of concepts and information by explicitly creating memorable events involving visual or auditory images with projects, plays, simulations and other forms of active learning, to boost student’s retention of the concept. Okeke (2004) further stated that whatever students have retained for about 12 to 24 weeks after instruction, they might retain forever. In addition, the more time that passes after learning, the less information will be remembered. This form of forgetting is often referred to as “time decay” (Woolfolk, 1998). For instance, neural connections, like muscles grow weak without use. Okoye (2012) refers to retention as the process of maintaining the availability of new meanings or some part of them. It may be suggested that the amount of the original meaning that will be retained at any given point in time is a variable quantity. Forgetting represents a decrement in the availability of an acquired meaning, that describes the loss in availability that occurs between the original establishment of the meaning and its later reproduction. Considering the two terms, retention is seen as a positive aspect of memory while forgetting is seen as the negative aspect. Frequent reviews and tests, elaborated feedback and active involvement of students in learning projects have been associated with longer retention. Okoye (2012) further stated that active participation during instruction increases learning and retention. This study aims to find out if 4MAT could enhance biology student retention of knowledge. In addition, this study will determine if the effect of 4MAT on various variables are gender related or if there is a gender dimension in the use of 4MAT and its various effects and influences.

An issue of contention in Nigeria today is the issue of gender in our society including the educational system. Gender is a set of characteristics distinguishing between male and female, particularly in the cases of men and women which depending on the context, may vary from sex to social role to gender identity (Bland, 2003). According to Okeke (2004) gender is a social or cultural construct, characteristics, behaviour and role that varies from place to place or culture to culture. It is not like sex, which is biologically determined and universal too.

Gender related issues in science education have continued to receive serious attention judging from the number of studies done to that effect. Babajide (2010) opined that science subjects, which include physics, biology and chemistry, are given masculine outlook by educational practitioners. In addition to this, studies by Ogunleye (2002); Ezirim (2006); Okwo and Otuba (2007) show that academic achievement in science subjects depends on gender. However, Nwosu (2001) found out that student’s acquisition of science process skills is not gender specific. In addition, studies by Ogunleye and Babajide (2011), Agonmuoh & Nzewi (2003) lend credence to significant gender effect in science achievement. Madu (2004) and Agomuoh (2010) found that gender influences student’s conceptual shift in favour of male students.

The issue of gender and students’ academic achievement especially in biology has been inconclusive. Some researchers are of the view that male students perform better than females, others disagree with this view, arguing that achievement is a factor dependent on several factors such as socio – economic background, and teaching method among others. Therefore, one sees that the issue of gender has not yet been resolved particularly in relation to students’ achievement in biology, hence the need for further study on that regard, especially when trying out new teaching strategies. In this study, the researcher is interested in using the 4MAT model to design learning activities in Biology and find out its effect on achievement, and retention.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

Over the years, the achievement of students in Biology in Nigeria secondary schools has been very poor. Students’ achievement in Biology in internal and external examination is on the decline. The WAEC Chief Examiner Report of 2009 – 2011 indicated poor achievement of students in biology. The students’ poor achievement in biology could be attributed to so many factors such as poor classroom management, use of gender biased instructional material, lack of adequate instructional materials, lack of adequate laboratory activities, poor teaching methods employed in teaching biology by the secondary school teachers and lack of competent biology teacher. Biology as a science subject is so verse and activity based; it therefore, needs a virile teaching method that can take care of learning styles of the students In other to overcome the problems of poor achievement, and retention of students in biology, some researchers have suggested the use of diverse instructional strategies, which may help to enhance students’ achievement in biology. This study seeks to use an instructional model, which could be able to address students learning styles and brain hemispheric preference and provide practice and feedback in ways of thinking and solving problems. The students may not initially be comfortable with this type of instructional strategy, but they will have to use it to be fully effective in the learning process. The use of 4MAT could be a solution to the problem of poor achievement of students in biology. This is because 4MAT is an instructional model that could take care of the differences in the way students learn; instill multiple skill acquisition which could enhance students achievement in biology. 4MAT could also enhance students’ ability to retain the biology concepts because it engages students actively during the learning process and gives students the opportunity to construct their own knowledge. The problem of this study therefore, is to find out if the use of Four Mode Application Techniques could enhance the achievement, and retention students with different learning styles. The study also sort to see if the use of 4MAT could help the streamline the gender differences in students’ performance in Biology.


1.3 Objective of the Study

The main purpose of this study was to investigate effects of four mode of application techniques on academic achievement and retention of biology student in Kano Municipal Education Zone, Nigeria. Specifically, this study determined:

  1. The effect of Four Mode Application Techniques (4MAT) on mean achievement scores of students with different learning styles in Biology.
  2. The effect of Four Mode Application Techniques (4MAT) on mean retention scores of students with different learning styles in Biology.
  3. The influence of gender on mean achievement scores of students taught biology using 4MAT.
  4. The influence of gender on mean retention scores of students taught biology using 4MAT.
  5. The interaction effect of methods and gender on mean achievement scores in Biology.
  6. The interaction effect of methods and gender on students’ mean retention scores in Biology.

1.4 Research Questions

The following research questions were posed to guide this study

  1. What is the mean achievement score of students with different learning styles taught biology using Four Mode Application Techniques (4MAT) and those taught using conventional lecture method?
  2. What is the mean retention score of students with different learning styles taught biology using Four Mode Application Techniques (4MAT) and those taught using the conventional lecture method?
  3. What is the difference in the mean achievement score of male and female students taught biology using 4MAT?
  4. What is the difference in the mean retention score of male and female students taught biology using 4MAT?
  5. What is the interaction effect of methods and gender on students’ mean achievement scores in Biology?
  6. What is the interaction effect of methods and gender on students’ mean retention scores in Biology?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses were formulated and were tested at alpha level of 0.05.

  • HO1: There is no significant difference in the mean achievement scores of students with different learning styles taught Biology using 4MAT and those taught with conventional method.
  • HO2: There is no significant difference in the mean retention scores of students with different learning styles taught Biology using 4MAT and those taught with conventional method.

1.6 Significance of the Study

It is expected that the findings of this study will lay credence to the effectiveness and authenticity of the tenets of the constructivist theory of Piaget, Brunner and Vygotsky’s Social Learning Theory. The finding will help to strengthen the application of these theories in teaching and learning in science subject, specifically in Biology. Constructivism is a theory that explains how knowledge is constructed when new information encounters existing knowledge that had been developed by experiences. From the constructivist view, learning is a constructive process in which the learner builds an internal illustration of knowledge and personal interpretation of experience. This theory grew out of the learner’s knowledge of their learning styles and how best they learn during the learning process, which is the major basis of 4MAT. In 4MAT system, the teachers use many instructional strategies that will help the learners to construct their own knowledge during the learning process. Following the eight steps involved in 4MAT learning cycle, it is possible for students to practice by themselves and shares ideas with others. The findings of this study will help to strengthen the basic tenets and implications of the theory of constructivism, by validating the theory.

Practically, the findings of the study will be significant to the following groups: students, teachers, curriculum planners, author and researchers. The findings of this study could enhance student’s participation in science activities that will increase their retention and achievement in biology. It could also help students to spend their leisure wisely by engaging in activities that pertains to science, thereby improving the functionality of science. This finding of this study could guide the students on a career path and help them make important decisions that will impact their future.

For the teachers, the study will enable them to understand that even though the traditional science instructions saves time in terms of content coverage, it has also contributed to the myriad of misconception. It is hoped that the findings of this study would help the teachers to know the efficacy of 4MAT in teaching and learning, so as to be able to apply it to their daily teaching in other to improve students’ achievement, and retention. It will also help teachers to present their teaching in a manner that would accommodate student’s diverse learning style and stimulate the functions of the left and right brain hemisphere. The findings may likewise help to modify the nature of teacher’s interaction with the students, which will in turn help to create the spirit of inquiry among the students.
Furthermore, the study would help curriculum planners to appreciate the need to accommodate learning styles and activities that stimulate the brain hemispheric functions in designing the school curriculum. The findings of this study will enable them to have some basis for encouraging their teachers to try multiple intelligences in their classrooms, and it can enable them to implement a multiple intelligence-based curriculum. To other researchers, the findings of this study will help them to build their literature and it will serve as a guide to their study.


1.7 Scope of the Study

The study is on the effect of Four Mode Application Techniques (4MAT) on academic achievement and retention of biology student in Kano Municipal Education Zone, Nigeria. The study was conducted with SS II Biology students in in Kano Municipal Education Zone, Nigeria. The biology topics that were taught in this study are Respiratory System and Transport System. The choice of these topics are based on the WAEC chief examiner’s report that student have poor knowledge of carrying out experiments, taking readings, making observations and- drawing conclusions on experimental data; and the chief examiner’s recommendation the teachers should endeavour to expose students to practical classes to familiarize them to-experimental procedures (WAEC, 2008-2012). Hence, the researcher chose theses topics, which involve experiments to help improve students’ knowledge of experimental procedures, because the model is activity oriented. The choice of coeducational schools is because gender is a moderating variable of the study.


1.8 Limitation of the Study

During the course of the study challenges encountered were exclusively but not delimited to the following numerous. These are

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:

Time factor pose another constraint since having to cope in this research which went simultaneously within the time schedule of other academic work making it impossible to undertake this study in large more representative skill.


1.9 Definition of Terms

Academic Achievement:

Academic achievement refers to an individual’s performance in an academic activity. It is the result of the assessment of an individual’s ability in accomplishing a task related to his studies.


1.10 Organisations of the Study

The study is categorized into five chapters. The first chapter presents the background of the study, statement of the problem, objective of the study, research questions and hypothesis, the significance of the study, scope/limitations of the study, and definition of terms. The chapter two covers the review of literature with emphasis on conceptual framework, theoretical framework, and empirical review. Likewise, the chapter three which is the research methodology, specifically covers the research design, population of the study, sample size determination, sample size, and selection technique and procedure, research instrument and administration, method of data collection, method of data analysis, validity and reliability of the study, and ethical consideration. The second to last chapter being the chapter four presents the data presentation and analysis, while the last chapter(chapter five) contains the summary, conclusion and recommendation.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Summary

5.1 Introduction

In this chapter, the findings of the study based on the nine research questions and nine null hypotheses that guided the study are discussed. The conclusion, educational implications, recommendations, limitations of the study, suggestions for further research and summary of the whole study are also presented.


5.2 Summary of the Findings of the Study

Results obtained from this study are discussed based on the following subheadings:

Four mode application techniques (4MAT) on achievement and retention scores of student with different learning styles in biology

Four Mode Application Technique (4MAT) was superior to the conventional lecture method in facilitating the achievement of the learners with different learning style. The finding of the study also showed that students with different learning style taught biology using 4MAT had higher mean retention score in biology. These differences in achievement and retention scores of students with different learning style might have been as a result of the type of instructions presented to them. In 4MAT lesson, all learners had equal chances of learning and constructing their knowledge. There was also more interactive exchange of information than just giving formation. 4MAT creates opportunities for a deeper sense of responsibility for student during the learning process. The activities allowed the students to learn concepts more than contents and provided the opportunities for students to express free opinions with the teachers as a facilitator. Therefore, the students who learned through 4MAT continuously encourage the whole- brain functioning in constructing knowledge.

When the students generated information, they seemed to understand their own knowledge better than the one presented by the teachers. Also, in 4MAT lesson, there were activities for each student’s learning style. The four types of learner identified in the model needs to learn like each other at the same time in other to make learning successful i.e. the type one learner has to learn how to be type two, three, and four learner etc. if he should learn anything well. The contents and activities were suitable to the potential and diversity of students. This could be the reason why the students who were taught biology using 4MAT performed better than their counterparts taught biology using the conventional lecture method.

The result of the study showed that among those exposed to biology lesson based on the conventional lecture method; it was only the students with assimilating learning style that had considerable high achievement score. This is because students with assimilating learning style learn best when exposed to instruction based on lecture method. The finding of this study is in line with the observations of Pratoomtong (2011) who found that students who learned through science activities based on 4MAT System had higher achievement than students who learned through the traditional method of teaching. The study also agreed with observations of Taylor and Francis (2009), Kelimeler and Ogrenme (2009), Phatchariya-Phetdong (2005), Piyalux- Potiwan (2004), Nitita-Kusolpoon (2002) and Doughathai (2001), who found out that students taught with 4MAT achieved significantly better than students in the textbook group.

The finding on students’ retention score agreed with the findings of Adebola (2012), Chianson (2011), Kelimeler and Ogrenme (2009), Piyalux-Potiwan (2004), Wilkerson and White (1998) and who found out that 4MAT enhances students’ retention than the traditional lecture method. The finding of the study is also similar to the findings of who found out that innovative student centred instructional methods could lead to high retention score of students than the conventional instructional methods.

Influence of gender on mean achievement and retention scores of students taught biology using 4MAT

The findings of this study revealed that female students had slightly higher mean achievement score than their male counterparts. The difference in the mean achievement scores for male and female students was not statistically significant. This finding could be as a result of the nature of instructional method used in teaching the students which is 4MAT. All the students were given equal opportunities and were actively involved in the instructional process. This instructional model allowed both the male and female students to actively find out facts by themselves on the same level ground. This method also helped to engage the students with different learning styles and hemispheric preferences. The findings from this study disagreed with the findings of Ukozor (2011) and Madu (2004) who found out that male students performed better than their female counterparts in physics. This finding also agreed with that of Nwosu (2001) and Baser (2006) who found out that gender is not a significant factor in the mean achievement score of students in biology.

The finding of this study also revealed that male students taught biology using 4MAT had higher retention score than their female counterparts. This result could as a result of the developmental stage which the SSII students are. At SSII level, most female students are highly distracted by their male counterpart due to their nature. This could have affected their retention scores. This may be the reason while the male students retained more than female students. This finding is in line with the findings of Adebola (2012), Kelimeler and Ogrenme (2009), Onyegegbu (1999), Wilkerson and White (1998) who found out that male students had higher retention score than their female counterparts.

Interaction effect of method and gender on mean achievement and retention scores of students in Biology

The finding of this study showed that there was no significant interaction effect of method and gender on students’ mean achievement and retention scores in biology. This is because the difference in their performance was not significant. However, the performance of the female students was slightly higher than that of their male counterpart, even though it was not statistically significant. This slight difference in the performance of female students and their male counterparts could be as a result of the nature of instructions delivered to the students, which enabled both the male and female students to be actively involved during the teaching and learning process. However, in retention, the male students performed better than that of their female counterpart, even though it was not statistically significant. Also, the slight difference in retention score of male students and their female counterparts could be as a result of the nature of the instruction (4MAT) delivered; the female students could have participated actively, which made them to outperform their male counterparts.


5.3 Conclusions

From the results obtained in the study on the effects of Four Mode Application Technique (4MAT) on achievement, retention and multiple intelligences of students with different learning style, it was found that:

  1. 4MAT was superior to the conventional lecture method in enhancing the achievement of students with different learning styles in biology.
  2. There was no significant influence of gender on students’ mean achievement scores in biology when taught using 4MAT; the posttest mean scores of female student were slightly higher than those of their male counterparts.
  3. Gender significantly influenced students’ mean retention scores in biology when taught using 4MAT.
  4. There was significant interaction effect of instructional methods and gender on mean achievement score of students in biology.
  5. There was significant interaction effect of instructional methods and gender on mean retention score of students in biology.

5.4 Implications of the Findings of the Study

The findings of this study have implication for Education, Science Education community in particular, which includes the biology students, biology teachers, authors and publishers of biology books.

The implications of this study borders on the use of more virile instructional method for teaching biology. The findings of this study have shown that students have difficulties in biology and these difficulties are resistant to change. These results imply that the current instructional methods used in teaching biology cannot effectively enhance the achievement, and retention of students with different learning styles. Instructional method that can take care of the differences in students’ hemispheric preferences and learning styles would be more appropriate in teaching biology. 4MAT was able to engage the function of the two hemispheres of the brain and address the needs of students with different learning style, thereby enhancing the achievement, and retention of student with different learning style.

The findings also have implications for instructing students who differ in learning styles and hemispheric preferences. The use of 4MAT would be more effective irrespective of the differences in learning styles and hemispheric preference.

The findings of this study equally have implication for biology teachers; from the findings of the study, it shows that biology teachers do not use effective pedagogical approaches in teaching the subject and this has led to constant poor performance of the students in the subject. Biology teachers has to be using innovative student-centered instructional strategies like the 4MAT other than traditional teaching methods since the later cannot address the needs of students with different learning style.

Authors and publishers of biology books are not left out. The findings of this study have implications for textbook review. With the findings on the efficacy of 4MAT in facilitating students’ achievement, and retention of students, it has become obvious that the current textbooks recommended by the Ministry of Education are inadequate to meet the needs of the students and consequently need to be reviewed. This will, without doubt, enhance student’s achievement, and retention.


5.5 Recommendations

In line with the findings of this study, the researcher made the following recommendations;

  1. Teaching and learning through 4MAT was observed and it was found that most students were very interested in doing activities, enthusiastic about doing group activities, had fun, and were happy because they did experiments and activities by themselves as well as working in groups with friends. Therefore, teachers should apply these activities for other contents and levels.
  2. Before instructions, the teachers should explain the criteria of evaluation to students in order to motivate their learning. This will also make their lesson to be more effective and interactive.
  3. Science teachers should prepare learning activities based on 4MAT system to provide opportunities for students to do variety of activities because the study showed that students who have different learning style have the same learning outcomes when they learned through 4MAT.
  4. The results of this study show that students who were taught biology with 4MAT had higher retention score than students who were taught using traditional lecture method. Hence, teachers should employ 4MAT in teaching.
  5. Science teachers should be trained on how to use 4MAT and other innovative student- centered instructional approaches in teaching. This can be done by organizing periodic workshops and seminars for teachers.

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