Influence Of Parental Background On The Academic Performance Of Children

Project and Seminar Material for Education

Influence Of Parental Background On The Academic Performance Of Children


Abstract


This project was designed to research into the influence of home background on the academic performance of children in selected schools in Edo State. To guide the study, five research purpose, five research questions and five research hypotheses were formulated. The design adopted for this study was Ex-post Facto design. The population of the study consists of all primary pupils from the fifty three primary schools in the three local government areas in Benin city Education Zone. The fifty three primary schools in the zone have a population of seven thousand, nine hundred and forty five primary pupils. Out of the fifty three schools, twelve schools were sampled using proportionate random sampling technique. In the twelve schools, all PRI 5 pupils numbering eight hundred and sixteen (816) were used as the subject of the study. The research instrument was questionnaire on family background influence (FBI), designed by the researcher and validated by experts. The reliability of the instrument was established using Crunbach alpha method. The data collected were analyzed using mean and standard deviation while t-test statistics was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. The instrument was pilot tested in Obollo Afor Education Zone, using 30 pupils. The reliability coefficient was 0.69. The finding of the study revealed that: Pupils from educated parents achieve more than those from uneducated parents in academics; pupils from high-income status parents enjoy considerable advantage in academic achievement than pupils of low income status parents because their parents were able to afford necessary materials and equipment needed for effective learning in the school; parental level of motivation also influenced pupils’ academic achievement because motivation and reward served as a form of reinforcement for children’s learning at school. Based on these findings, the study recommended among others that parents should diversify their sources of income to be able to provide fund for their children’s schooling. Parents should equally realize the importance of using rewards and other measures to motivate their children.


Table of Content


Chapter One:

Introduction

  • Background of the Study
  • Statement of the problem
  • Purpose of the study
  • Research questions
  • Research Hypotheses
  • Significance of the study
  • Scope of the study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • Conceptual framework
  • Concept of family
  • Concept of family Background
  • Concept of achievement
  • Concept of academic achievement
  • Theoretical framework
  • Parental attachment theory
  • Self Determination theory
  • Maslow’s Motivational theory
  • Review of Empirical Studies
  • Summary of related literature reviewed

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • Research Design
  • Area of study
  • Population of the study
  • Sample and sampling technique
  • Instrument for data collection
  • Validation of the instrument
  • Reliability of the instrument
  • Method of data collection
  • Method of data analysis

Chapter Four:

Results and Discussion

  • Result
  • Research question one
  • Research question two
  • Research question three
  • Research question four
  • Research question five
  • Hypothesis one
  • Hypothesis two
  • Hypothesis three
  • Hypothesis four
  • Hypothesis five
  • Discussion of the findings
  • Influence of parental level of education on pupils’ academic achievement
  • Influence of parental occupation on pupils’ academic achievement
  • Influence of parental income on pupils’ academic achievement
  • Influence of family size on pupils’ academic achievement
  • Influence of parental motivation on pupils’ academic achievement

Chapter Five:

Conclusion and Recommendation

  • Conclusion
  • Educational implication of the study
  • Recommendations
  • Limitation of the study
  • Suggestion for further the study
  • Summary of the study
  • References
  • Appendices

Chapter One


Introduction

Background of the Study

Over the years, the nation has been experiencing a drastic fall in the academic performance of pupils and pupils at the various level of education. Scholars of different school of though has attributed this ugly trend to many factor such as poor teaching methodology, inadequate instructional facilities and a lot more from the look of things, these scholars seems to heap the blames either on the pupil or the teachers who most times are not actually the immediate causes.

However, a chose observation reveals that this trend has an undeniable relationship with one parental background in terms of their socio-economic status. Only recently the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria president Olusegun Obasenjo in his monthly presidential media chat, held in October 2003, cried out in regards to the poor academic situation terms that our—-” graduates are fast becoming more of half baked graduated—” what a mess.
Meanwhile, as this scenario continues to thrive, many more meaningful individuals both from the academic and non-academic field of the society not only shares their grievances they also point accusing fingers towards the teachers and the pupils. They give little or no attention to the pupil’s socio-economic background, which from act appearances seem to be one fundamental cause of poor academic performance in school.

We have it on records that a child spends more time at home with his or her parents than he or she spends in school. This makes the home of greater influence in this regard. Little or no wonder it is said ”charity begins at home”
Be that as it may, we cannot over labour the fact that poor performance of a country’s citizens at various level of education has a way of tarnishing or beautifying that countries image.

Considering the magnitude of this problem, it therefore becomes very expedient that this project be carried out as it is hoped that it will help in savaging the problem or situation as it were, to a very reasonable extent. It is against this background that the researcher is interested investigating the influence of family background on pupils academic achievement in Benin city education zone of Edo state. The researcher intends to investigate the variables in the family background with a view of assessing their relative influence on academic achievement of primary school pupil in Benin city education zone.


Statement of the Problem

It is almost becoming a common and accepted knowledge those poor performances of pupil in our school is due to the inadequacies of teachers or pupil non-challant attitude to study. This is purely a wrong assumption that needs an investigation as we cannot afford to loss sight of the drastic effect that ones parental background have on the academic performance of the child.

It is in cognisance of this that the following questions become very important.

  1. What role does the socio-economic position of parent’s play in the academic performance of the child?
  2. To what extent does the level of education of parents affect the academic performance of pupils
  3. Is there any relationship between living condition at home and academic performance of pupils?
  4. How does the family structure in terms of monogamy, polygamy and size affect the academic achievement of pupil
  5. How far does the attitude of parents and guidance affect the academic performance of pupils?

Purpose of the Study

Generally, the purpose of the study was to find out the influence of family background on pupils’ academic achievement among primary school pupils in Benin city Education zone.

Specifically, the purpose of the study is to find out:

  1. The influence of parental level of education on academic achievement of primary school pupils.
  2. The influence of parental occupation on pupils’ academic achievement.
  3. The influence of parental income on pupils’ academic achievement.
  4. The influence of family size on pupils’ academic achievement.
  5. The influence of parental motivation on pupils’ academic achievement.

Research Questions

The study will provide answers to the following research questions:

  1. What is the influence of parental level of education on pupils’ academic achievement?
  2. What influence does parental occupation have on pupils’ academic achievement?
  3. What is the influence of parents’ income on pupils’ academic achievement?
  4. What is the influence of family size on pupils’ academic achievement?
  5. What influence does parental motivation have on pupils’ academic achievement?

Research Hypotheses

The following hypotheses will guide the studying and will be tested at 0.5 level of significance.

  1. There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of pupils in Urban and Rural Schools on the influence of parental level of education on pupils’ academic achievement
  2. There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of Pupils in Urban and Rural Schools on the influence of parental occupation on pupils’ academic achievement.
  3. There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of Pupils in Urban and Rural Schools on the influence of parents’ income on pupil’s academic achievement.
  4. There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of Pupils in Urban and Rural Schools on the influence of family size on pupils’ academic achievement.
  5. There is no significant difference in the mean ratings of Pupils in Urban and Rural Schools on the influence of parental motivation on pupils’ academic achievement.

Significance of the study

Theoretically, the findings of this study are considered significant because it can help in providing empirical information in identifying and explaining the various family background variables and the influence of the variables on pupils’ academic achievement. This will help in better understanding of the phenomenon. Moreover, it is expected that the findings will help to explain the functionality of the theoretical postulations Maslow’s motivational theory. According to Maslow, motivation is very important in learning, and a learner under motivated condition, exhibits purposeful behaivour aimed to achieving the set goal. The pupils is motivated to learn when their physiological need like shelter, food, water, rest and safety needs like love and belonging. The satisfaction of these needs leads to the quest to satisfy higher needs which boarder on self esteem and self actualization. The understanding of this theory especially as it relates to pupils teachers and parents would be of particular significance to researchers in the field of education and family studies.

Practically, the finding of this study will be useful to the following: the teachers, pupils, parents, school guidance counselors, Parents Teachers Association (PTA), educational administrators and the society at large.

The finding of the study will be of immense help to the teachers. The teachers will realize the necessity of individualizing their teaching by structuring their teaching methods and instructional resources to take care of the divergent parental backgrounds of the pupils. This method may yield more positive result than the traditional system which assumes that all children have similar family background. The findings of the study will also help teachers to exercise patience with slow-learners as they vary methods of instruction to accommodate divergent family background.

The findings will be of immense importance to pupils. The pupils will realize that their poor performance might not necessarily be their fault alone, especially those from low status families. Such knowledge will go a long way to reduce frustration in the pupils and also reduce drop-outs which occur as a result of frustration. Rather, the pupils should be made to adjust and help themselves by studying hard at home and also make proper of the books and materials that are provided for them at the school library. Through the findings of this study, parents will realize the importance of improving their educational standard so as to influence their children’s academic performance.

Parents will also understand the need for them to improve their socioeconomic status so as to be able to provide the necessary motivation in form of learning materials and other things which will enhance their children’s learning and their academic performance. They will equally acknowledge the importance of positive motivations and encouragement and provide some, by making the family environment more conducive for their children.

The school guidance counselors will also benefit from the findings of this study. They will be in position to guide and counsel pupils in the area of personal social interactions, academic performance and career choice.

The findings of the study will help Parents Teacher Associations (PTA) of schools in promoting the academic performance of pupil. This is because at PTA meetings, parents know their functions and responsibilities at home, to help solve their children’s problems both home and school environment.

The findings of the study will be of immense help to educational administrators. They will use the findings in the formulation of policy that will regulate equal educational opportunities for all children irrespective of their family background in the distribution of equipment, facilities and amenities to schools.

The findings of this study will help the society at large in identifying how family environmental variables such as what parents’ level of education, parents’ income, parents’ occupation, parents’ motivation and family size on pupil’s academic performance. This will act as a check on increasing low academic performance among pupils, occasioned by the fact that some parents, teachers and counselors do not have adequate knowledge/input required of them.


Scope of Study

The study is limited to primary schools in Benin city education Zone of Edo state. The context scope of this study is limited to finding the influence of family background on academic achievement of pupils with particular regards to parental level of education; parental occupation, parental income, family size and parental motivation.


Chapter Five


Conclusion and Recommendation

Conclusion

From the findings of the study, it was concluded that family background factor influence academic achievement of pupils in schools. Prominent among the family background factors include parental educational level, parental income and parental motivation. Educational statuses of the parents and pupils’ academic achievement have a close relationship between them. This is because parents themselves having being to school realized the importance of being educated. They stand better chance to support their children for better academic achievement.

On parental motivation, it was found that pupils who received encouragement and motivation from the family perform better in schools than their counterparts from non encouraging families. The major reasons for the observed difference in performance are the motivation and positive attitude of the parents towards their children’s academic progress.

The acceptance of hypotheses two and four was based on the result of statistical data from the field. Personal observation equally showed that parental occupation cannot determine pupil academic achievement. This is because education which is the major determinant of occupation may not be the same in the parents and children. Again, a child from large family size, who has strong determination can compete favorably with another child from small family size. Moreover, most children from small families are over pampered and undetermined.


Educational Implication of the Findings of the Study

The findings of this study have some implications for the parents, pupils and the teachers.

The first hypothesis revealed that pupils from educated parents perform better in academics than pupils from uneducated parents. This phenomenon is as a result of intellectual stimulation and direct involvement of educated parents in their children’s education. This helps pupils from such background perform better than those from uneducated parents.

This phenomenon can be corrected by stimulating school environment and teachers’ positive reinforcement strategy which can compensate for non stimulating and negative reinforcement prevalent in an uneducated families. For pupils from uneducated families, this school situation aids to maintain the same home conducive atmosphere for academic career and facilitates learning and academic achievement.

Another major finding revealed that pupils from parents of high income status posses most of the necessary materials for their learning, unlike pupils from parents of low income status. This is an indication that children come to school from different background and these backgrounds presents their own problems for the children. The teacher having realized this condition should be conscious when dealing with the pupils. Pupils who came from low income class parents should not be mocked or compared with their counterpart from high income status parents when they failed to meet up in providing most of the materials needed for their studies. If such comparison occurs the pupils from low income status parents would feel inferior and that will affect their academic performance the more, and may even lead to the exhibition of abnormal
behaviour trait.

All the above facts not withstanding, more efforts are still required from the parents, especially from the low income group in ensuring that adequate facilities are provided for the pupils. Pupils from low income parents requires virtues like dedication, honesty, determination, integrity and tolerance to pursue their career by making use of school facilities during and after school hours to enable them attain high academic performance.

Findings of the study also revealed that parental motivation is one of the major determinants of pupils’ academic achievement. Therefore, the need for parents to learn how to encourage their children cannot be overemphasized. There is equally the need for parents to be involved in the teaching-learning process of their children, particularly this period where most of the pupils come to school from their respective homes.

There is also the need for teachers to be more motivational in their teaching. This is possible when they vary their method of teaching and teaching aids to take cognizance of the individual differences inherent in the pupils from their different family backgrounds. Teachers can ameliorate through filling the parental motivational needs by individualizing instruction and taking special interest in the slow learners who suffer from deficient parental motivational pattern.

Another vital implication from this study is that school authorities should try to avoid grouping or streaming the school children especially according to ability and intelligence. Since the pupil come from different family background, there is every tendency that they differ in many respects. To have balanced and competitive class, the pupils should be randomly distributed, avoiding grouping intelligent ones one side and dull ones the other side.
This study equally implies that there is a greater need for more literacy and awareness campaign than before to awaken illiterate parents and instill awareness in literate parents who seem to attach much importance to education. The programme should be extended to rural areas where it is needed most.


Recommendations

Education is an important instrument of change in modern societies. Provision of adequate and relevant education is the best thing a nation can do for its citizens. This is more so, because education is a virile weapon against ignorance, disease, poverty and as a means of producing enlightened, responsible and industrious citizenry and prosperous nation.

Based on this background, the researcher makes the following recommendations:

  1. One of the major findings of this study is that parental income level has a great influence on pupils’ academic achievement. For example, most cases, parental income is proportional to pupils finding which also determine to a large extent, the level of academic achievement of pupils. In this case, it is recommended that parents as a matter of importance should diversify their sources of income so that they can be able to provide fund their children in school for better academic achievement.
  2. Parents should be made to realize the importance of motivation in determining their children academic achievement in schools, especially the realization that most of the male pupils are abandoning school for business. Parents should be actively involved in encouraging pupils to learn and also in supervising pupils academic work at home
  3. Pupils’ should give serious attention to studies at home, in addition to other various works done, since the amount of effort they put in their studies influence their academic achievement.
  4. Teachers should understand that teaching is a job of conscience. Teachers should handle the pupils as their own children; try by all means to meet the pupils’ academic social and psychological needs. They should be motivational in their teaching and use different teaching methods so as to go along with all categories of pupils. This will help bridge deficiencies from negative family background.
  5. The state and Federal Governments should legislate against examination malpractices. Such situation will force pupils to sit up and take their studies serious. Again, the various governments should create employment opportunities for the graduate of various institutions of higher learning. Lack of job opportunities contributes to the loss of interest and zeal for education by pupils. The current situation in Nigeria where graduates are left with little or no hope of employment gives no encouragement to the primary school pupils for further education. Rather, the pupils see going to school is a waste of time.

Limitation of the Study

Like any other human endeavour, this study faced certain limitations.

Some of these limitations include:

  1. Choosing the topic for this study, constructing and administering the instrument and getting it validated were not easy exercise.
  2. The researcher paid repeated visits to some schools before he was permitted to interact with the pupils (respondents).
  3. Although the researcher and the research assistants gave the pupils adequate instructions and guidance for completing the questionnaire, some of the pupils awarded scores arbitrarily to the questionnaire items.
  4. The study was carried out in three local government areas that made up Benin city Education Zone. It was assumed in the study that the schools sampled in Benin city Township where the zonal headquarters were located constitute the Urban schools and the pupils from those schools were regarded as Urban pupils as used in the study. This poses a limitation to the study as this does not portray a pure or ideal representation of Urban pupils.
  5. The researcher’s zeal for the study was initially seriously undermined by the intermittent strikes of primary school teachers and university lecturers.

Suggestions for Further Research

Research work remains an important exercise as far as human existence on earth continues. Such being the case, the following areas have been suggested for further research work:

  1. Influence of peer pressure on academic achievement of primary school pupils.
  2. Academic and environmental stress affecting academic achievement of primary school pupils.
  3. Gender and Age as predictors of academic achievement in primary school.
  4. Influence of poverty on pupils’ academic aspiration.
  5. A similar study should be carried out in other parts of the country to compare the findings.

Summary of the Study

The problem of this research is whether there is influence of family background on pupils’ academic achievement among primary school pupils in Benin city education zone of Edo state. Although many think that pupils perform poorly in academic because the teachers did not teach well, some other people believe that this problem is not caused by teachers. They traced the problem to the family background of pupils which has the capacity to promote or retard pupils’ achievement.

Bearing this problem in mind, the focus of this study is to find out whether there is any influence of family background on pupils’ academic achievement by examining the influence family background variables like parental education level, parental occupation, parental income level, family size and parental motivation on pupils’ academic achievement.

To Achieve the Objectives:

This study was carried out on fifty three (53) public primary schools in Benin city education zone with a total population of Seven thousand, nine hundred and forty five (7945) pupils. However, proportionate random sampling was used to draw four schools each from the three local government areas in the education zone. In this respect, twelve (12) schools were sampled for the study. In each of the twelve schools, primary two (SS2) pupils formed the subject for the study giving a sample size of eight hundred and sixteen (816) respondents (subjects).

Five research questions and five research hypotheses tested at 0.05 level of significance were used. The instrument for data collection was questionnaire designed by the researcher through the review of related literature and validated by experts. The questionnaire contained twenty six (26) items. Likert-type of scale was used to rate the responses. The reliability of the instrument was established using trial test method. The data were analyzed using mean and standard deviation to answer the research question and t-test statistics to test the null hypothesis at 0.05 level of significance. The results showed that: Pupils’ academic achievement is influenced by parental level of education, parental level of income and parental motivation while parental occupation and family size are not significant determinants of pupils’ academic achievement.


Influence Of Parental Background On The Academic Performance Of Children


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