Complete Chapter One
EFFECTS POSED BY LARGE CLASS SIZE ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF STUDENTS IN THE JUNIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS ILAJE LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF ONDO STATE
Background to the Study
The unprecedented improvement in the medical field and the availability of its product within human community especially in the under developing nations of the world, has led to increased human production. The spectacular decline in death rate over the last three to four decades has not been accompanied by a similar decline in the birth rate. This manifested itself in itself in an impressive growth on the population size from one billion in 2005 and to five billion in 2011 in Nigeria Sadips (2005). The government of the day is apprehensive of the following universal problems associated with population: Over population leads to increase in class size in our educational institutions.
Over population leads to mass unemployment which in most case leads to criminal activities such as prostitution, pre-marital sex which could lead to or result in unwanted pregnancy and spread of sexually transmitted diseases like syphilis, HIV/AID, gonorrhea, and host of others?
Over population leads to over utilization of resources.
The possibility of the population out growing the food supply and infrastructure in the economics.
Among the problems enumerated above, the issue of our populated classroom and the associated consequences is paramount. The phenomenon of large classes is fast becoming the vogue of Junior Secondary Schools in Nigeria, if not over the world. The large class syndrome has been attributed to the expansion in annual students’ enrolment. At any rate, education as old as man has been characterized with mass instruction and this is the peculiarity of large classes in various institutions. (centre for the enhancement of learning and teaching, 2003) students as many as three or four hundred, often cluster in a small hall tending to pay attention to the ”talking and chalking” teachers who occasionally scribbles on the chalk board, while it is mostly assumed that as the teachers pass the necessary information through verbal means , learning takes place. Whereas Awoniyi (2011) found out that in such a situation, much teaching goes on, but little learning takes place with only a few of the student as a result of the gap between the teacher, the taught and the content.
In a large class, where teaching method is typically the mode of instruction, meeting the needs of the variety of students through effective communication has therefore be found to be a challenge. Though it is often thought that learning occurs in proportion to class size, that is, the smaller the size the more the students learn, however, the size of a class may not absolutely be a predictor of students learning and equally of teaching Feilder (2011).
However, there is the need to be conscious of the fact that the key to effective instruction and students learning is effective communication which must reflect the need and aspiration of the students in a large class size as the case may be. Roger, (1995).
Statement of the Problem
The quality of education acquired in Nigeria schools is increasingly declining due to the problem of large class size which is unfortunately getting larger by the day. In many cases, the problem of students not performing well in their academics is not the fault of the teachers which often have no choice but to teach a class with an overwhelming number of students in a class room built to accommodate about (40) forty students.
The class become so overcrowded that most times students are seen standing inside and outside the classroom with some sitting on the bare floor receiving lessons while the teachers are forced to shout and strain their voices in order to be heard by their students.
The fact that this sad condition grossly affects the academic performance of the students is therefore the focus of this research study.
Based on the stated problem the following questions were formulated to guide the study:
Does class size affect the academic performance of junior secondary school in Ilaje local government area of Ondo state?
Do students in smaller classes do better in their school work compared to students in lager classes?
What are the effects of large class size on the students’ academic performance in junior secondary schools in Ilaje local government area?
How can large classes be managed in these junior secondary schools better academic performance among the students?
Large class size does not affect the academic performance of junior secondary school students Ilaje local government area of Ondo state.
Students in smaller classes do not do better in their school work compared to students in larger classes.
There are no effects of large class size on students’ academic performance in junior secondary school in Ilaje local government of Ondo state.
Larger class size cannot be managed in theses junior secondary schools for better academic performance among the students.
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this research study is to investigate the effects of large class size on the academic performance of students in some selected junior secondary schools in Ilaje local government area of Ondo State. The study therefore, set out to:
Determine how large class size affects student’s academic performance in junior secondary schools in Ilaje local government area.
Identify the consequences of large class size with regards to the academic performance of the students.
Develop strategies that would alleviate the problem of large class size and its effect on student’s academic performance in junior secondary schools in Ilaje local government area of Ondo state.
Significance of the Study
The findings of this study are of great benefits to the management and students of junior secondary schools, especially in Ilaje local government area of Ondo state as the study identifies effects of large class size in relation to the academic performance of students. The government, the federal ministry of education agencies such as National Council on Education (NCE), state ministry of education and host of others would be exposed to the dangers which large class size pose to Nigerian students’ academic success.
This exposure would prompt them to act more. It is hoped that deliberately against the phenomenon parents and guardians will also gain immensely from the study because it will enable them to understand that larger class size can be detrimental to the academic performance of their children and wards; they can therefore agitate for and support better classroom structures.
Above all, the study would suggest solutions to the problems often faced by students in large classrooms. This will not only lead to improvement in their academic performance but also in the effectiveness of the teachers.
Scope and Delimitation of the Study
The scope of the study is on the effects of large class size on the academic performance of students in some selected junior secondary schools in Ilaje local government area of Ondo state during the 2012/2013 academic session. It does not focus on the effects of small class size except by influence and implication.
Limitation of the Study
The research was limited to sampled students in some selected secondary schools in Ilaje local government area of Ondo state and therefore, generalization to uncover areas may not be readily made.
This study may also be subjected to false information which may be supplied by the respondents but adequate plans have been ensured to reduce such falsification of information
Definition of Terms
Class size: the number of students in a class which may be large or small.
Academic performance: how well or badly a student does in his or her studies in school.
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