THE EFFECTIVE USE OF INSTRUCTIONAL RESOURCES IN IMPROVING THE TEACHING AND LEARNING SITUATION IN NIGERIAN SCHOOLS
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Education, according to Coombs (2000) consists of two components. He classified these two components into inputs and outputs. According to him, inputs consist of human and material resources and outputs are the goals and outcomes of the educational process. Both the inputs and outputs form a dynamic organic whole and if one wants to investigate and assess the educational system in order to improve its performance, effects of one component on the other must be examined. Instructional materials are print and non-print items that are designed to impart information to students in the educational process. Instructional materials include items such as kits, textbooks, magazines, Newspapers, pictures, recordings, slides, transparencies, videos, video discs, workbooks, and electronic media including but not limited to music, movies, radio, software, CD-ROMs, and online services. Instructional material plays a very important role in the teaching-learning process. It enhances the memory level of the students. At this time, education has spread wide and the entirely oral teaching cannot be the key to successful pedagogy; therefore, the teacher has to use instructional material to make the teaching-learning process interesting (Nicholls, 2000; Raw, 2003). The use of instructional material can enhance the learning achievement. Cronbac (2009) states the important elements of behaviour that provides the base for learning theory. Situations, the situation consists of all the objects, persons and symbols in learner environments. Experience in situation prepares a person to respond to similar situation in the future. Situation must be created in which learner may feel satisfaction. Personal characterizes under this heading we include all the abilities and all the typical responses that the person brings to the situation.
Use of instructional material can appeal to the individual attention by creating interest. Goal: the goal of the learner is that he wishes to attain. Since goals direct efforts, the teacher problem of motivation is essentially one of arranging situation with instructional material in which the learner will see goals he wants to attain. Interpretation: Person interprets situation in order to take action If relevant aids are made available it will be easy for a teacher and student to predict that what can be expected to happen if various actions are taken. Action: A person chooses whatever action he expects to give him the greatest satisfaction. The use of instructional material can facilitate the decision of a person toward taking right action. Consequence: Actions following by their results are called consequences. If instructional material is used, the prediction would be rewarding and consequences will justify the work done by person, he will feel full satisfaction. Instructional material is used efficiently and actively to facilitate the teaching-learning process in most of the advanced countries. However, the situation is not good in most of the developing countries as well as in Nigeria. Firstly, only the lower quality and the less quantity of instructional material are provided to schools. In this way, the availability of instructional material is very less. Secondly, teachers are not trained properly for using instructional. Thirdly, teachers do not take interest in using the instructional material. Nigeria government is spending a huge amount of money in the education sector; however, the quality of education is very low. There are many factors that are responsible for this sorry state of affairs. Less availability and deficient use of instructional material is one of them. This factor needs to be investigated thoroughly the actual data.
Instructional resources which are educational inputs are of vital importance to the teaching of any subject in the school curriculum. Wales (2005) was of the opinion that the use of instructional resources would make discovered facts glued firmly to the memory of students. Savoury (2008) also added that, a well planned and imaginative use of visual aids in lessons should do much to banish apathy, supplement inadequacy of books as well as arouse students’ interest by giving them something practical to see and do, and at the same time helping to train them to think things out themselves. Savoury (2008) suggested a catalogue of useful visual aids that are good for teaching history i.e. pictures, post cards, diagrams, maps, filmstrips and models.
He said that selection of materials which are related to the basic contents of a course or a lesson, helps in-depth understanding of such a lesson by the students in that they make the lesson attractive to them, thereby arresting their attention and thus, motivating them to learn. He advocated the use of pictures which will help children in grounding their thoughts and feelings. He said that pictures are used as alternatives to real objects where it is impossible to show students the real objects, and they do serve effectively in tan imagined activities.
It is also very vital to have sufficient and adequate human resources in terms of teacher quality for the teaching of all subjects in the school curriculum. Without the teachers as implementing factors, the goals of education can never be achieved. In order to achieve a just and egalitarian society as spelt out in the Nigerian National Policy of Education (2004), schools should be properly and uniformly equipped to promote sound and effective teaching. Suitable textbooks, qualified teachers, libraries which are adequate should also be provided for schools. Scarcities of these, according to Coombs (2000), will constraint educational system from responding more fully to new demands. In order to raise the quality of education, its efficiency and productivity, better learning materials are needed. Knezewich (2005) also stressed the importance of having appropriate personnel plan and adequate physical facilities to support educational effort. However, this study aimed at assessing the impact of instructional resources and its effective use in improving the teaching and learning situation in big schools in Sagamu local government area of Ogun state.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
It is generally accepted in the world that students’ performance is directly influenced by the instructional materials applied. These instructional materials are the key ingredients in learning. Barnett (2002) comments that teachers should cover the materials in the curriculum and prepares students for standardized tests. Students’ achievement in any teaching and learning situation is very important. Unfortunately, students’ performance in secondary schools in Nigeria has not been very encouraging as consistently highlighted by scholars in education for past decade. This problem of poor performance is apparently assuming a dimension that could affect the entire economy situation in the country (Onasanya, 2002). Nevertheless, teachers have neglected the use of instructional materials and in a way they have watered down student’s motivation as far as learning is concerned. All these bring about poor performance of the students. Many students are performing poorly year after year in their examinations and this situation is growing worse. This in turn opens their door to poor life thereafter. This poor performance may be brought by non-innovative teachers who may not want to use the instructional materials in the right way. Unqualified teachers may also bring this problem. In this case it calls for a research to be carried out to find out exactly what the problem is.
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The aim of this study is to investigate the impact of instructional resources and its effective use in improving the teaching and learning situation in some selected schools in Sagamu local government area of Ogun state.
Specific Objectives of the Study
The study will be meant:-
To identify the availability of instructional material at the secondary school level.
§ To identify the extent of use of instructional material at the secondary school level.
§ To determine how the use of visual aids influence the students’ performance in Sagamu local government area of Ogun State.
§ To find out whether learning environment also influence the students’ performance in Sagamu local government area of Ogun State.
§ To identify some guiding principles towards optimal learning outcome at the secondary school level.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
This research will provide answers to the following questions:
(i) What extent do textbooks as part of instructional materials influence the students’ performance in Sagamu local government area of Ogun State?
(ii) To what extent does the use of visual aids influence the students’ performance in Sagamu local government area of Ogun State?
(iii) What is the influence of conducive environment on students’ academic performance?
(iv) What are the alleviating measures for combating the problems identified in this study?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
In order to identify the variables and to accomplish the purpose of this study, the following hypotheses were postulated in null form for the purpose of this study:
H01 - There is no significant difference in the performance of students in schools with adequate materials resources and the performance of students in schools with inadequate material resources.
H02 - There is no significant relationship between teacher’s appropriate methodology and students’ academic performance.
H03 - There is no significant relationship between conducive learning environment and students’ learning ability.
H04 - There is no significant difference in performance of students in schools with adequate supply of qualified teachers and students in schools with inadequate supply of qualified teachers.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
Eminent scholars in education have express concern about the status of teaching and learning in Nigerian secondary schools and lots of studies has been carried out towards improving the teaching and learning condition. Despite all these, effort needs to be place on the use of instructional materials in teaching, and this form a basis for this study. Nevertheless, the importance of this study is to enhance massive improvement in teaching and learning in Nigerian secondary schools with the aid of instructional materials, so as to achieve better and sustainable outcome in the nearest future.
1.7 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The scope of this study covers the following secondary schools in Sagamu local government area of Ogun State:
(i) Remo Divisional High School, Sagamu
(ii) Makun High School, Sagamu
(iii) Ofin High School, Sagamu
(iv) Methodist High School, Sagamu
1.8 LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
This study is subjected to limitation and challenges that accompany any research work that make use of questionnaire like; non-compliance of some respondents and inadequate information regarding the problem under investigation. Finally, financial and time constraints were also some of the challenges that pose a lot of limitations on the scope of this study.
1.9 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Instructional Materials: Instructional materials are print and non-print items that are designed to impart information to students in the educational process. Instructional materials include items such as kits, textbooks, magazines, newspapers, pictures, recordings, slides, transparencies, videos, video discs, workbooks, and electronic media including but not limited to music, movies, radio, software, CD-ROMs, and online services.
Teaching: This is an act of imparting knowledge /skill to a person /learner about a subject.
Learning: This is a relatively permanent change in behaviour as a result of past experiences. It could also be described as an act of acquiring knowledge or skills. It is synonymously called ‘inclination’.
Teacher: This is the person that impact knowledge to a learner for the purpose of skills acquisition.
Affect: These are the mitigating factors that disturbed the smooth and proper running of an activity.
Schools: These are institutions for educating children /learners or giving instruction. It can also be described as a place where formal education is being given to the learner.
Sustainable Development: This is the development that meets the need of the present, without compromising that of the future generations to meet their needs.
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