Factors That Influence The Learning Of Science In Schools

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Factors That Influence The Learning Of Science In Schools


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Science is commonly acknowledged as being extremely important on a global scale, both for the economic well-being of nations and for the necessity for scientifically knowledgeable citizenry (Fraser & Walberg, 1995). Due to the numerous obstacles that they face, knowledge of science and technology is a prerequisite in all countries and for all individuals worldwide. New drug-resistant diseases, the impacts of genetic research and engineering, the ecological impact of contemporary technology, the hazards of nuclear war and explosions, and global warming are just a few of the issues (Alsop & Hicks, 2001). As a result, rapid changes are occurring in industries such as manufacturing, communication, agriculture, and medicine. By boosting technical growth, expanding national prosperity, enhancing health, and industrialisation, science as a development tool plays a significant role in bringing about these changes (Validya, 2003). Weham, Dorlin, Snell, & Taylor (1984) stressed that sciences have always been and would continue to be fundamental disciplines.

Science is commonly acknowledged as being extremely important on a global scale, both for the economic well-being of nations and for the necessity for scientifically knowledgeable citizenry (Fraser & Walberg, 1995). Due to the numerous obstacles that they face, knowledge of science and technology is a prerequisite in all countries and for all individuals worldwide. New drug-resistant diseases, the impacts of genetic research and engineering, the ecological impact of contemporary technology, the hazards of nuclear war and explosions, and global warming are just a few of the issues (Alsop & Hicks, 2001). As a result, rapid changes are occurring in industries such as manufacturing, communication, agriculture, and medicine. By boosting technical growth, expanding national prosperity, enhancing health, and industrialisation, science as a development tool plays a significant role in bringing about these changes (Validya, 2003). Weham, Dorlin, Snell, & Taylor (1984) stressed that sciences have always been and would continue to be fundamental disciplines.

According to Zsuzsa (1981), the choice of educational program is chosen in direct relation to knowledge and advice available to the individual and the breadth of educational possibilities available. The school should therefore ensure that pupils make educated decisions. Tiqet (1999) indicated that strong performance in internal and external examinations in any subject promotes an academic discipline dedication and desire to study the subject. Regardless of all the efforts, now it is seen that the aims for promoting scientific literacy is not accomplished, Science enrollment are relatively low, achievements in specific grade level is dropping and instructors morale is low. In the past the more intellectual ability pupils were the ones selected to pursue Science and Mathematics in high schools. But lately more of these pupils are less inclined to continue with Science when they join universities (Voogot, 2001).

The inspiration from significant individuals, the commitment and support provided by the subject teachers, the availability of teachers and their teaching styles, and the relevance of the subject to their everyday life experiences are all causes for students’ preference of a certain subject (Ndalichako, 2014). People usually seek professions that are related to their academic interests. People in general discover that, for whatever reason, they tend to be interested in certain areas and indifferent in others from the time they are young children, and starting a job in an area in which they have no passion is likely to be miserable, regardless of the financial advantages (Ryan, 2000). In this fast expanding competitive market, industry seeks graduates who can meet their research and development needs while also competing effectively with their peers globally. The overall situation in Nigeria is a warning that the wide disparity between learners opting for Science and those opting for Arts subjects is a warning that Nigeria is less likely to improve its local and global leadership in Science unless the government takes corrective action to produce or import enough experts in these fields. A fundamental goal of education in the twenty-first century is to produce scientifically literate people capable of critical thinking, making sense of complex facts, and problem solving (NRC, 1996). According to research, if all children are to become scientifically literate, science training must be more engaging and meaningful to them. To do this, secondary school science curriculum must give students with opportunity to explore the world, apply scientific principles, sample and analyze data, and create connections between these explorations, their personal lives, and communities.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

According to Ndalichako (2014), students in Nigeria’s secondary schools have been often faced with the problem of indecision when they are about to choose the science subjects in their third form of the secondary school education. This problem has plagued many Nigeria’s secondary school students for quite sometime. It is such a problem that must be looked into, knowing fully well that the place of sciences in secondary education cannot be over emphasized in the educational development of a nation (Ndalichako, 2014). With good background, students still need to develop themselves on the subject areas they are keenly interested in and particularly that they have potentiality for. Many students have been found choosing subjects for West African Senior Secondary Examination without considering the aspect of their potentiality and the directive of the school counselor where available.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

Broadly, the main aim of this study is to assess the factors that influence the learning of science in schools. Specifically, this study seeks to:

  1. Examine the role of parents in the choice of science learning by students
  2. Examine the role of school counselors in the choice of science learning by students
  3. Examine the role of gender in the choice of science learning by students
  4. Determine the benefits in the choice of science learning by students
  5. Determine the challenges students face in the choice of science learning

1.4 Research Questions

The following research questions will guide this study:

  1. Do parents have a role in the choice of science learning by students?
  2. Do school counselors have a role in the choice of science learning by students?
  3. Does gender play a role in the choice of science learning by students?
  4. What are the benefits in the choice of science learning by students?
  5. What are the challenges students face in the choice of science learning?

1.5 Significance of the Study

The study would be extremely beneficial to school administrators since it would assist them in better understanding the elements that influence students’ choice of science subjects and in initiating suitable actions to improve students’ performance in science subjects. The outcomes of the study will also help relevant government departments, allowing them to develop policies on topic choice and subsequently job choice at higher levels of education in Nigeria. The study will contribute to the vast body of academic information in the field of education, which will be utilized as a reference by other researchers in the future. Researchers and research institutes may use the findings to develop new research projects.

Other academics interested in researching education development and student performance in relation to education management activities and strategies in the country will find the study useful. Furthermore, the study adds to previous studies on student performance by revealing the challenges related with secondary education and student performance, which are critical in identifying solutions to the problems revealed.


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Frequently Asked Questions


What influences students’ science learning?

Findings suggested that both positive and negative factors influenced students’ science learning. Teachers believed that the most influential factor was the students themselves, followed by the family and the school.

What are the factors that affect learning?

The factors are: 1. Physiological Factors 2. Psychological Factors 3. Environmental Factors 4. Methodology of Instructions. 1. Physiological Factors: The physiological factors are sense perception, physical health, fatigue time and day of learning, food and drink, age and atmospheric conditions.

Do conceptual change factors influence students’ science learning?

This study used content analysis to examine the most studied conceptual change factors that influence students’ science learning processes and their learning outcomes. The empirical research analyzed here was identified via the ERIC database.

What factors affect learning outcomes in the qualitative studies?

RQ 1-2-2 Learning outcomes in the qualitative studies RQ 1-2-3 Effectiveness of the qualitative studies 1. Personal characteristics (1) Gender; (2) Grade; (3) Prior knowledge; 4) Reasoning (5) Motivation/ attitude, (6) Social context and others. 2. Instructional intervention (1) Classroom instruction; (2) Text design; (3) Digital learning. 1. 

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