Effects Of Readability Of Basic Science Textbooks On The Academic Performance Of Junior Secondary School (Case Study Of Selected Secondary Schools In Oshodi Isolo LGA)
This study was carried out on the effects of readability of basic science textbooks on the academic performance of junior secondary school using some selected secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA, Lagos State as a case study. The survey design was adopted and the simple random sampling techniques were employed in this study. The population size comprise of Basic science teachers and students of the selected secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA, Lagos State. In determining the sample size, the researcher conveniently selected 200 respondents and 150 were validated. Self-constructed and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. The collected and validated questionnaires were analyzed using frequency tables. While the hypotheses were tested using Pearson Correlation statistical tool, SPSS v23. The result of the findings reveals that there is no adequate availability of basic science textbooks in junior secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA. The study also revealed that basic science textbooks are not published in simple and relatable terms. Further findings showed that Basic science textbooks can not easily be understood by the students. And readability of basic science textbooks has an effects on the academic performance of junior secondary schools. Therefore, it is recommended that Government and other stakeholders in education should organize and sponsor on a regular basis appropriate workshops, seminars, and in service trainings geared towards helping serving Basic Science teachers on how best to teach Basic Science meaningfully to their students. To mention but a few.
Table of Content
- 1.1 Background of the Study
- 1.2 Statement of the Problem
- 1.3 Objective of the Study
- 1.4 Research Questions
- 1.5 Research Hypothesis
- 1.6 Significance of the Study
- 1.7 Scope of the Study
- 1.8 Limitation of the Study
- 1.9 Definition of Terms
- 1.10 Organizations of the Study
Review of Literature
- 2.1 Conceptual Framework
- 2.2 Theoretical Framework
- 2.3 Empirical Review
- 3.1 Research Design
- 3.2 Population of the Study
- 3.3 Sample Size Determination
- 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
- 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
- 3.6 Method of Data Collection
- 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
- 3.8 Validity of the Study
- 3.9 Reliability of the Study
- 3.10 Ethical Consideration
Data Presentation and Analysis
- 4.1 Data Presentation
- 4.2 Analysis of Data
- 4.3 Answering Research Questions
- 4.4 Test of Hypotheses
Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation
- 5.1 Summary
- 5.2 Conclusion
- 5.3 Recommendation
1.1 Background to the Study
The 9-year Basic Education Curriculum (BEC) was nationally and internationally applauded when it was developed in 2007 and its implementation started in 2008. The Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC) recognized the shift towards an increasingly global economy which demands flexibility, openness of mind and the ability to think critically. The NERDC saw that therewas need to review, restructure and re-align the then existing curricular for Junior Secondary Schools (JSS) to fit into the 9-year Basic Education programme according to Adeniyi as cited in Ani (2016). The Basic Science curriculum for Junior Secondary School (JSS) is meant for the current 6-3-3-4 (now 9-3-4) system of Education in Nigeria. It is intended to provide new Basic Science course for three years to all junior secondary school students. By implication, it is expected to satisfy the needs of the society through the relevance and functionality of its contents, method, processes and application.
With the introduction of the new Basic Science curriculum, Basic science teachers are expected to deliver the curriculum objectives through appropriate teaching approaches and strategies. Therefore the workability of any curriculum depends on its effective delivery which involves the students, the teacher, teaching methods and other materials like textbooks as well as evaluation of the textbooks’ conformity with the curriculum.
Textbooks are study aids, consisting of a textbook that may or may not have workbook and teacher’s handbook (Okolo, 2018). Each of these set fulfils a specific purpose. Workbooks are designed to contain exercises and assignment questions and may even provide learners with space to answer the questions. Learners can give written answers to questions in a single traditional textbook which they have or answer the questions in a separate book or inside the booklet.
Textbooks form part of the larger group of educational media and is categorized under printed media. Other forms of printed media include magazine, newspapers, charts and posters, atlases, dictionaries, teachers’ guide and learner workbooks (Ani, 2016). Textbooks, like any other book that publishers print, are pieces of merchandise; the ultimate objective of their production is for commercial success (Lawrence, 2011). Most publishers published textbooks in order to make money. Ani (2016) contended that textbooks usually consist of a number of chapters with texts of different lengths that deal with various topics. There may be a different theme for every chapter and sometimes there are few activities or exercises. In some cases, textbooks and the workbooks are joined together in the same book, but sometimes they are represented by two separate books. Some textbooks are sometimes accompanied by other materials such as CDs, cassettes, and a teacher’s guide. All of these additional materials are of course taken into account in the selection of a textbook. Textbooks and their contents stand as vehicle for positive change in educational system. This indicates that textbooks play an important role for obtaining information about the likely teaching and learning practices of a particular school, programme or institution. Hence, for the proper implementation of any school curriculum such as Basic Science, textbook is an essential component of the educational system. This indicates that textbooks are heavily utilized by teachers and learners.
Evaluation is a matter of judging the fitness of something for a particular purpose. It is used to connote the process of making value judgments or taking decisions about events, objects or their characteristics (Nworgu, 2015).It is the systematic processof making a value judgment of educational attainments and possibilities of individual enterprises from which the attainments were made. Nworgu goes on to say that the value judgment is based on the quantitative and qualitative information collected through measurement and non-measurement assessment techniques like observation, self-report and rating techniques.
Evaluation of textbooks is also considered to function as a kind of educational judgment. Evaluation of textbooks can be carried out to help a publisher or an institution to make decisions, to help in developing and selecting textbooks, to find out if the book being used meets the needs of the students and to carry out a research project (Ani, 2016). Therefore evaluation of the readability of Basic Science textbooks is considered as one of the means for regulating and standardization of the textbooks to maintain their quality across the nation. Hence in the selection of a new Basic Science textbook, it is important to conduct an evaluation to ensure that the text is suitable. The idea of evaluating textbooks is seen by some, to be clearly linked to the selection of textbooks. The evaluation helps the selection, which serves as an important decision making process. Tomlinson as cited in Ani, (2016) contented that it is very important for evaluators to develop their own evaluation criteria so as to effectively assess the suitability of a textbook with a particular group of learners. These criteria should consider the following steps:
- The first step is a consideration of relevant contextual factors and the gathering of information analysis of the material (assessing textbook fitness with the curriculum).
- The second step is a close evaluation using checklist method which should require careful tailoring to the needs of the learners and the teaching context and the need for periodic updating recognized.
- The final step is the decision making phase which can be reached through a careful and systematic approach that addresses the question of validity and reliability.
The pedagogical values and suitability of the Basic Science textbook should be continuously evaluated using all of the above three stages. Therefore for adequate evaluation of Basic Science textbooks, the cyclic process should be adopted; hence there is need to assess Basic Science textbooks in order to facilitate selection and suitability of the Basic Science textbooks in use in Nigerian junior secondary schools. Regardless of which stage the textbook is evaluated, the process of textbook selection and evaluation is based on evaluators’ opinions and facts about the textbook. However, evaluation of Basic Science textbook in use in Nigerian secondary schools remains an important process, since through textbook evaluation, teachers can know the fundamental merits and drawbacks of a particular Basic Science textbook. This will help to select the most appropriate Basic Science textbook for the learners. The main issue in selecting Basic Science textbook is to search for its readability.
Readability is an important criterion under which a text can be evaluated; its measures are primarily based on factors such as the number of words in the sentences and the number of letters or syllabus per word. Important features that are commonly measured are word length and sentence length, which enable the determination of ease in reading. Readability scores are then provided to readers after being examined on understanding the text given.
The readability level of the recommended Basic Science textbooks for JSS 1, 2 and 3 using Flesch-Kincaid embedded in Microsoft office word 2010. The Basic Science textbooks evaluated include:
- NERDC Basic Science for Junior Secondary School
- Basic Science for Nigerian Junior Secondary Schools by Jegede, ., Oyegbanji, J. I, P. & Brown, D.P. O.J.
- Basic Science for Universal Basic Science by Ugwa, M.C.
- New Edition Junior Secondary Basic Science by Ashiakpa, A.
- Basic Science for Junior Secondary Schools UBE Edition by Bajah, S.T. et al.
- STAN Nigerian Basic Science Project New Edition by STAN.
- UBE Edition Basic Science. An Integrated Science Course for JSS by Ndu, F.O.C., Ndu, L.O. Olarewaju, A.O. & Somoye, E. O.
- Comprehensive Basic Science for Secondary Schools by Onoh, C.E.C.& Onoh, M.N.
- Model Basic Science for Junior Secondary Schools by Okolo, K.N.
- Basic Science for Junior Secondary Schools Upper Basic by Agbasimalo, N.E.
- Simplified Basic Science UBE Edition by Abani, L.C.
Many studies have been carried out in which textbooks are evaluated from various perspectives. Emereole and Rammiki (2004) evaluated physics textbooks used in Botswana secondary while Omiko (2010) evaluated Senior Secondary School Chemistry textbooks in use in Nigerian secondary schools. There seems to be no research that focuses on the evaluation of the readability of Basic Science textbooks written for the junior secondary schools. Evaluation of the readability of Basic Science textbooks used in secondary schools in Enugu State, Nigeria becomes imperative in the effort to improve teaching and learning as well as help teachers to select good teaching materials for Basic Science. Textbooks need to be critically evaluated to see whether they are meeting the expected goals of the National Policy on Education (Federal Ministry of Education, 2013) and at the same time to see whether Basic Science textbooks are in conformity with the new Nigerian Educational Development and Research Centers NEDRC curriculum. Textbooks, therefore, take on a very important role in a Basic Science class, and it is important to select a good textbook. Textbook is often considered the main source of information and the most common teaching and learning materials.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
In order to address these inadequacies in Basic Science textbooks, NERDC came up with an agenda to ensure that school textbooks met the curricular standards that are in line with the approved National Book Policy in education sector. The National Textbook Policy stipulates the need to equip schools with standardized texts based on a revised curriculum and also textbooks used by both JSS and SSS should be reviewed after a specified period. The recent introduction of the revised Basic Science curriculum has provided a natural platform for evaluation of the readability of Basic Science textbooks in use in Nigerian Secondary schools. It is on this ground that the researchers deemed it necessary to evaluate the effects of readability of basic science textbooks on the academic performance of junior secondary school in Nigerian secondary schools.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The main objectives of this study is to find out the effects of readability of basic science textbooks on the academic performance of junior secondary school (case study of selected secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA), specifically the study intends to:
- To find out whether there is adequate availability of basic science textbooks in junior secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA.
- To determine whether basic science textbooks are published in simple and relatable terms.
- To determine whether basic science textbooks can easily be understood by the students.
- To ascertain whether readability of basic science textbooks has an effects on the academic performance of junior secondary schools
1.4 Research Questions
The study will be guided by the following questions;
- Is there adequate availability of basic science textbooks in junior secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA.?
- Is basic science textbooks published in simple and relatable terms?
- Is basic science textbooks easily understood by the students?
- Does readability of basic science textbooks has an effects on the academic performance of junior secondary schools?
1.5 Research Hypothesis
Ho: There is no significant relationship between the readability of basic science textbooks and students academic performance.
Ha: There is a significant relationship between the readability of basic science textbooks and students academic performance.
1.6 Significance of the Study
This research work will be useful since Basic science teaching and learning is essential for success of any nation, as there is a direct relationship between achievement in science and technology on one hand and economic growth of any given country on the other. Findings of these study will also benefit in planning and budgeting so as to provide enough funds to support Basic science subjects in schools, train more Basic science teachers, purchase adequate teaching and learning resources including Basic science textbooks, teaching model.
Lastly the findings of the study will help the ministries of education and relevant stake holders including the Basic science teachers in evaluating students’ performances in their various capacities. It will also give curriculum developers new insights into emerging issues on performance and influence the authorities on policy formulation.
Students will also benefit from the findings; because improved science performance will give them opportunities to pursue career in Medial, Environmental, Pure and other related sciences programs in institutions of higher learning in the country.
1.7 Scope of the Study
This research work will be conducted in Lagos State, some selected secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA will be used for this research work.
1.8 Limitation of the Study
Finance for the general research work will be a challenge during the course of study. Correspondents also might not be able to complete or willing to submit the questionnaires given to them.
However, it is believed that these constraints will be worked on by making the best use of the available materials and spending more than the necessary time in the research work. Therefore, it is strongly believed that despite these constraint, its effect on this research report will be minimal, thus, making the objective and significance of the study achievable.
1.9 Definition of Terms
Textbook is a compilation of facts, ideas, concepts, principles, practices and knowledge within a given subject matter area.
This is the level of ease or difficulty with which text material can be understood by a particular reader who is reading that text for a specific purpose.
1.10 Organization of the Study
This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows.
- Chapter one is concern 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, Conclusions and Recommendations:
This chapter summarizes the findings on the effects of readability of basic science textbooks on the academic performance of junior secondary school using some selected secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA, Lagos Stateas a case study. The chapter consists of summary of the study, conclusions, and recommendations.
5.2 Summary of the Study
In this study, our focus was on the effects of readability of basic science textbooks on the academic performance of junior secondary school using some selected secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA, Lagos State as a case study.The study is was specifically set tofind out whether there is adequate availability of basic science textbooks in junior secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA, determine whether basic science textbooks are published in simple and relatable terms, determine whether basic science textbooks can easily be understood by the students, and ascertain whether readability of basic science textbooks has an effects on the academic performance of junior secondary schools.
The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 150 responses were validated from the enrolled participants, where all respondent areBasic science teachers and students in some selected secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA, Lagos State.
Based on the findings of this study, the researcher made the following conclusion.
- There is no adequate availability of basic science textbooks in junior secondary schools in Oshodi Isolo LGA.
- Basic science textbooks are not published in simple and relatable terms.
- Basic science textbooks can not easily be understood by the students.
- Readability of basic science textbooks has an effects on the academic performance of junior secondary schools.
Based on the findings of the study, the following recommendations are proffered.
- Authors of Basic Science textbooks should put a mechanism in place to review the textbooks periodically as it is done with curriculum.
- Students and teachers should use recommended Basic Science textbooks to enhance effective teaching and learning of scientific concepts.
- Basic Science teachers and supervisors should be consulted when selecting the Basic Science textbook material, and they should participate in making any modifications or improvements concerning the textbooks.
- Government and other stakeholders in education should organize and sponsor on a regular basis appropriate workshops, seminars, and in service trainings geared towards helping serving Basic Science teachers on how best to teach Basic Science meaningfully to their students.
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