Laboratory Facilities and Its Impact on Students’ Learning Outcome in Agricultural Science
Objective of the study
The broad objective of this study is to examine laboratory facilities and its impact on students’ learning outcome in agricultural science. Specifically the study seeks to:
- Examine the current availability and use of agricultural laboratories in secondary school.
- Investigate if there is significant difference on students’ performance in adequately equipped laboratories and to those in inadequately equipped laboratories.
- Explore if the efficiency of utilization of existing laboratory facilities by science teachers will enhance teaching of science subjects.
- Determine the impact of theoretical teaching of agricultural studies without laboratory exposure.
REVIEW OF LITERATURE
Our focus in this chapter is to critically examine relevant literature that would assist in explaining the research problem and furthermore recognize the efforts of scholars who had previously contributed immensely to similar research. The chapter intends to deepen the understanding of the study and close the perceived gaps.
Precisely, the chapter will be considered in three sub-headings:
- Conceptual Framework and
- Theoretical Framework
- Empirical Review
Concept of Agricultural Science
Agricultural Science is one of the core subjects taught in both junior and senior secondary schools in Nigeria. Because of its promising role in promoting self reliance through the provision of employment opportunities and production of staple foods for the populace together with raw material supply for the agro-allied industries, its teaching as a course offering in our schools and colleges has been made compulsory by the federal government.
The Federal Republic of Nigeria in its attempt towards the attainment of these laudable goals outlined the basic objectives of teaching agricultural science at the secondary school level as follows:
- To stimulate and sustain students interest in agriculture.
- To inculcate in students farming skills
- To enable students acquire basic knowledge and practical skills in agriculture.
- To prepare students for future studies in agriculture and
- To produce prospective future farmers (FRN, 2009:28).
The above objectives can only be attainable through effective instruction and motivation of students by teachers of agriculture. Surprisingly, most teachers of agricultural science in our secondary schools today are still known to have difficulty in teaching some agricultural science concepts thus leading to students’ poor performance in such areas especially in prescribed external examinations like West African Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination. (WASSCE), National Examination Council (NECO) and National Technical Education Board (NATEB) (Egun, 2007).
Again, there has been a general perception of agricultural science by an average Nigerian student, that it is a course that is dominated with practical and is majorly meant for students that are intellectually incapacitated (Adah, 2011). The way and manner students perceived the course, arises from the fact that instructional approaches adopted by teachers both in the classroom and on the field during teaching and learning process are not impressive. The effect of this is lack of interest and poor performance of students in the course. To arrest students’ attention, interest, curiosity and promote their performance, the use of activity stimulating and student-centered approach like demonstration method instead of depending on the conventional approach need to be embraced.
In this chapter, we described the research procedure for this study. A research methodology is a research process adopted or employed to systematically and scientifically present the results of a study to the research audience viz. a vis, the study beneficiaries.
Research designs are perceived to be an overall strategy adopted by the researcher whereby different components of the study are integrated in a logical manner to effectively address a research problem. In this study, the researcher employed the survey research design. This is due to the nature of the study whereby the opinion and views of people are sampled. According to Singleton & Straits, (2009), Survey research can use quantitative research strategies (e.g., using questionnaires with numerically rated items), qualitative research strategies (e.g., using open-ended questions), or both strategies (i.e., mixed methods). As it is often used to describe and explore human behaviour, surveys are therefore frequently used in social and psychological research.
POPULATION OF THE STUDY
According to Udoyen (2019), a study population is a group of elements or individuals as the case may be, who share similar characteristics. These similar features can include location, gender, age, sex or specific interest. The emphasis on study population is that it constitute of individuals or elements that are homogeneous in description.
This study was carried out to examine laboratory facilities and its impact on students’ learning outcome in agricultural science. Selected students from Molete Community High School and Ogbomosho High School in Ogbomosho axis of Ibadan State, form the population of the study.
DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS
This chapter presents the analysis of data derived through the questionnaire and key informant interview administered on the respondents in the study area. The analysis and interpretation were derived from the findings of the study. The data analysis depicts the simple frequency and percentage of the respondents as well as interpretation of the information gathered. A total of one hundred and forty-seven (147) questionnaires were administered to respondents of which only one hundred and forty-one (141) were returned and validated. This was due to irregular, incomplete and inappropriate responses to some questionnaire. For this study a total of 141 was validated for the analysis.
SUMMARY CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
This chapter of the study is set aside to determine summarized the descriptive analysis done in the precious chapters. It also gives the conclusion and makes some recommendation.
In the summary the purpose of this study was to examine laboratory facilities and its impact on students’ learning outcome in agricultural science. Specifically the study focused on examining the current availability and use of agricultural laboratories in secondary school, investigating if there is significant difference on students’ performance in adequately equipped laboratories, exploring if the efficiency of utilization of existing laboratory facilities by science teachers will enhance teaching of science subjects and to those in inadequately equipped laboratories and, determining the impact of theoretical teaching of agricultural studies without laboratory exposure.
In order to carry out this study research questions formulated to guard the investigation. A total at 141 students of Molete Community High School and Ogbomosho High School in Ogbomosho axis were randomly selected as enrolled participants for the survey. The study was anchored on the Cognitive Learning Theory.
In the conclusion the study is beyond doubt and abundantly clear that laboratory in schools is a necessity. Teaching and learning of science subjects cannot be fully exploited without the aid and use of laboratories. However, most schools do not possess a laboratory and in the schools that have, most laboratories are not well equipped. From results obtained and analyzed, the study reveals that:
- The extent of availability of agricultural laboratories in secondary schools is very high though most are not equipped adequately.
- There is significant difference on the performance of students’ taught with adequately equipped laboratories than those in inadequately equipped laboratories and
- Efficiency of utilization of existing laboratory facilities by science teachers will enhance teaching of science subjects.
Recommendation on the basis of findings. The researcher made the following recommendation with the belief that when studied and applied, would help to increase the standard already at hand. The researcher recommends that:
- Schools should endeavour to have a well equipped library laboratories.
- Laboratories in schools should be made open and accessible to both teachers and students.
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