Academic performance of students is the basis for achieving the
general aims and objectives of education which is to provide integrated
citizenry who will be useful to themselves and the society at large. In view of
this, this study conducted an Influence of Teachers’ Characteristics on
Students ‘Academic Performance in Biology in Selected Secondary Schools in
The descriptive research survey was adopted for the study. Simple
random sampling technique was employed to select twenty (20) Secondary Schools
in Ilorin Metropolis and was also used to draw a total sample of 100
respondents which varies from each other. In other words, while in some of the
schools, three respondents were sampled, in some schools two respondents were sampled.
The Biology result of 2 years period (2015-2017) for the five secondary schools
were obtained from the school administrators. The 3 data research questions
were analysed using frequency count and percentages while t-test and were used
to test the hypotheses postulated at significant difference of 0.05.
The findings of the study revealed that the academic performance of
senior schools in Biology Students in Ilorin Metropolis between 2015-20] 7 was
fair and the major factors responsible for the fair performances are teachers’
experience in Biology, teacher ‘s attitude, teacher‘s qualification, gender and
relationship between teachers and students in senior secondary school in Ilorin
Based on the findings of the study, it was recommended that the
teachers should intensify more efforts on developing themselves on their
interpersonal skills with their students as this will go a long way in helping
them identify the problem areas of the students in their subject. Also, both
male and female biology teachers should be given opportunities in the
assessment of students. Teaching experienced of biology teachers should not be
a barrier to recruitment into teaching job or a measure for judging the
academic performance of students in Biology.
Approval Page ii
Table of Contents vi
List of tables viii
Background to the Study 1
Statement of the Problem 4
Purpose of the Study 6
Research Questions 7
Research hypotheses 7
Scope of the Study 8
Significance of the Study 8
Clarifications of major Terms 9
OF RELATED LITERATURE
Science and Biology in Senior Secondary School 10
of Academic Performance and Teacher Characteristics 13
Teachers’ Qualification and Students’
Academic Performance 19
Teacher’s Year of Teaching and Students’
Academic Performance 24
Attitude and Students’ Academic Performance 28
Gender and Students’ Academic Performance 32
Appraisal of the Literature Reviewed 33
Research Design 37
Population, Sample and Sampling Procedure 37
Research Instrument 38
Validation of the Instrument 38
Procedure for Data Collection 39
Data Analysis Techniques 39
ANALYSIS AND RESULTS
Data Analysis 40
Summary of Findings 46
DISCUSSION, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Suggestions for further studies 50
LIST OF TABLE
Table 1: Showing the
Influence of Teachers’ Attitude on Students’ Academic Performance in Biology 36
Table 2: Showing the
Influence Of Teachers’ Qualification On Students’ Academic Performance in Biology 37
Table 3: Table Showing
the Influence of Teachers’ Experience on Students’ Academic Performance in
Table 4: Table of t-test to Analyze the Mean Score of Teachers Qualification on
Students Academic Qualification. 39
Table 5: Table of ANOVA to Analyze the Mean Score of
Teachers Teaching Experience on Students Academic Qualification. 40
Table 6: t-test Table to Analyze the Mean of Student Academic Performance By Male
and Female Biology Teachers. 41
Background to the Study
Science is an intellectual activity
encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behaviour of the
physical and natural world through observation and experiment. Merriam-Webster
(2016) defines science as the knowledge about or study of the natural world
based on facts learned through experiments and observation. The National
Academy of Sciences (2008) cited by Hohenberg (2010) defined science as the use
of evidence to construct testable explanations and predictions of natural
phenomena, as well as the knowledge generated through its process.
To that end science is an important
subject taught to children in schools. Many reasons have been given to support
its teaching. In other words, there are many reasons we can offer to justify
putting energy into providing students with the opportunity to learn science (Settlage &Southerland, 2012).
It helps the children to have a worldview of
science. In other words, they will begin look at things in a way that is
probably not the same as others.
The value system of science influences the way
Children learn to question and satisfy their
curiosity through science.
It enables children to be open-minded.
It inculcates in the children the spirit of
skepticism thereby pushing them to always seek more data to become convinced
as taught in secondary schools, is divided into; natural science, physical
science and social sciences. Sometimes, it is discussed under pure and applied
science and covers such subjects as physics, chemistry, biology, etc. Of these
subjects, biology is the only one that cuts across and concerns all students.
Unlike physics and chemistry for instance, biology is the only science subject
offered by all students in science class.
This implies that biology occupies a very
sensitive position in medical science and other related disciplines. This
informs several efforts geared towards studying biology at secondary school
level of education. Hence, it is one of the science subjects a student must
pass so as to offer some science courses at tertiary level of education
(Akinfe, Olofinniyi & Fashika, 2012).
It is however disheartening and
heartbreaking that despite the key role and much emphasis being laid on
biology, students of senior secondary schools are still performing below
expectation in this subject and this has been an issue of great concern for
stake holders in education, especially those in the field of science (Rowe,
2013). This has been attributed to myriad of factors. However, the pivotal of
all the factors responsible for the poor performance is the teachers (Ameen,
The relevance of teachers to education
cannot be over-emphasized. They are an extremely important facet of any society
for various reasons. Their role is significant and valuable. They play an extra
ordinary part in the lives of children from the formative years of their
development and thus the importance of teachers is something that cannot be
understated. They involve themselves in moulding their students into
responsible citizens of their country (Ameen, et al, 2006). This submission
shows that if teachers are well educated, intellectually alive and take keen
interest in their job, then only success is ensured.
According to Rowe (2003), it is the
teacher more than any single group who determines the attitudes of society and
shapes the idea and aspiration of the nation; this is power in reality. In the
same vein, Zwalchir(2008) observed that quality education depends on the
quality of teaching staff as well as its availability. The implication of this
is that besides other factors, teachers have been identified as a crucial
factor that could hinder successful teaching.
Buttressing the importance of teachers,
Ciwar (2005) added that teachers occupy a critical and fundamental position in
the development of any action. They act as catalyst of change for the
transformation of the society for the desired end.
The invaluable importance of teachers,
not withstanding, studies have shown that their success in relation to the
academic performance of their students is anchored or dependent on certain
characteristics. Hence, such factors as teacher’s attitude, qualification,
experience and even availability to a greater extent could affect and influence
students’ academic performance.
The motive, therefore, of this study is
to investigate the influence of teachers’ characters and students’ academic
performance in biology with a view to revealing the influence of such
characteristics as attitude, qualification, experience and availability on the
students’ academic performance in biology.
Statement of the Problem
Kosgei, Mise, Odera and Ayugi (2013) investigated the influence of teachers’ characteristics on
students’ academic achievement among secondary schools. Their study was based
on Kenya secondary schools. The
findings reveal that student academic achievement (in 2007, 2008 and 2009) was
below average for 45% of the schools, (30%) achievement was on average while (25%)
of schools had high student academic achievement. The poor performance was
attributed to inadequate number of teachers in most secondary schools within
the District. On teacher qualification, the study established that 65% of
teachers were degree holders, 25%had diploma certificates while only 10% were
The current study however differs in that
it is based on secondary schools in Nigeria and while their study was based on
teacher qualification, this covers such characteristics as qualification, years
of teaching, attitude and availability.
In the same vein, Abe (2014) studied the
effect of teachers’ qualifications on students’ performance in mathematics. The
study revealed the mean performance score of students taught by NCE teachers,
and B.Sc. Ed. Teachers has a variation of mean performance score of (2.36) that
of B.Sc. teachers and B.Sc. Ed teachers difference of mean performance score of
student (2.76) while that of mean performance score difference of students
taught by professional and non-professional was 4.02.
By implication, the effect of teachers’ qualification was shown on
the students’ performance in mathematics between NCE and B.Sc. Ed. teachers;
even though both teachers were professionally trained. Unlike Abe’s study, this study considers biology.
Also, while Abe’s study covered Ekiti in Nigeria, the current study covers
In their own study, Abu and Gbadamasi (2014) looked into the
Relationship between teacher’s attitude and student’s academic achievement in
senior secondary school chemistry. The
study was based on schools in Ijebu with chemistry in focus. This
study was based on the relationship between teachers’ attitude and students’
academic achievement in chemistry. One hundred and ten SSS chemistry
students,14 chemistry teachers from selected secondary schools in Ijebu-Ode and
Odogbolu Local Government area in Ogun State participated in this research. Two
research hypotheses and two research questions were formulated. The data
collected were analyzed using Pearson Product moment correlation, T – Test and analysis
of variance. The first null hypothesis which stated that there is no
significant relationship between teachers’ attitude and student’s academic
achievement in SSS chemistry was rejected. The result of analysis showed that
the correlation co efficient (r) is significant atP<0.05 (r = - .340,
P<0.05). This is indicates that there isa significant relationship between
teacher’s attitude towards chemistry and students’ academic achievement in the
subjects. The second null hypothesis which states that there is no significant
difference between the mean chemistry achievement scores of males and female
students in SSS chemistry has also been rejected. It thus showed that there is significant
difference in the mean chemistry achievement scores of SSS male and female
students (t = 2.018, df =122, P<.05). This means that gender has effect on the
achievement of students in SSS chemistry. From the outcome of the scores, it
was therefore noted that the achievement of students in chemistry depends on
the attitude of teaching display by the teachers. The present study is based on schools in Ilorin using biology as its
focus. Besides, their own study used attitude only while the present study
covers other variables.
So on the grounds that some of these
studies have not been able to combine the variables, this study is thus
imperative to depart from the earlier studies in locale and content coverage. It is
thus necessary and imperative to examine the relationship between teachers’
characteristics (of attitude, qualification, experience, as well as
availability) and students’ academic performance in biology.
Purpose of the Study
The general purpose of this study is to
establish the maxim between teachers’ characteristics and students’ academic
performance in biology. Specifically, the study found out;
attitude influences students’ academic performances in biology;
The influence of
teachers’ qualification on students’ academic performance in biology;
Role of teachers’
years of teaching experience on students’ academic performance in biology; and
The influence of
teachers’ gender on the academic performance of students in biology.
The study intends to provide answer to the following
What is the extent to
which teachers’ attitude influences students’ academic performance in biology?
qualification have an influence on students’ academic performance?
What influence does
teachers’ years of teaching experience has on students’ academic performance in
How does teachers’
gender (male and female) influence students’ academic performance in biology?
HO1: There is no significant relationship between
teacher attitudes on student academic performance in Biology
HO2: There is no significant difference between the
performance of students taught by the Biology teachers with high qualification
and Biology teachers with low qualification.
HO3: There is no
significant difference between the performances of biology students taught by
experienced and less-experienced biology teachers.
HO4: There is no
significant difference between the performances of biology students based on
The study is limited to finding the influence
of teachers’ characteristics on students’ academic performance in secondary
schools in Ilorin West Local Government Area of Kwara state. The
research population comprises all the senior secondary schools Biology teachers
in the area and on the grounds that there are many secondary schools therein, Twenty
schools were randomly selected. Hence, the study covers hundred respondents. While
in some of the schools, three respondents were sampled, in some schools two
respondents were sampled. Others school have only one teachers. This was on the
grounds that some schools had more biology teachers than another.
of the Study
is the hope of the researcher that this work would be of immense benefit to
teachers, educational planner, head teachers and fellow researchers. Finding of
this study could encourage the teachers of need to update their qualification
having seen its influence on students’ academic performance. This study could
help the educational planners to understand the implication of teachers’
qualification, experience attitude and availability of the academic performance
of students and thus make them provide training for teachers to learn new
trends in the field. Hence, the study will create the need to enable the
teachers’ update their qualification and experience to impact on the students.
the study might establish the need for the head teachers to encourage their
teachers to undergo further studies in order to enhance their professional
development with the aim of impacting positively on the academic performance of
students in biology.
In the same vein, it is expected that the
outcome of the study will enhance teachers’ performance in the classroom which
will consequently have impact on the academic performance of students. By
extension, it will encourage other students who are not offering biology to
develop deep interest in the subject.
Lastly, it could serve as a basis for
other researchers who might decide to work on this type of study using other
variables and location.
of Major Terms and Variables
following concepts used in the study are operationally defined;
Biology teachers’ disposition to respond favourably
or unfavourably to their work and the students. That is how the biology
teachers view the teaching and how they treat the students offering biology as
well as to others.
Qualification: This is used to refer the certificate obtained by a
Experience: This is the
year(s) of practice of Biology teachers
Performance: This is the result of academic endeavour by the
students learning biology.
Characteristics: These are such variables that are related to biology
teachers. They include attitudes, qualification, experience and gender.
refers to the state of being either male or female of the teachers of biology.