PERCEPTION OF STUDENTS AND TEACHERS TO BIOLOGY PRACTICAL IN SECONDARY SCHOOL.

1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY.

The words “science” is often misconstrued by many people. While some view it as a white man’s “juju”, others construe it as a kind of magic, like the tero blind men who went to see the elephant, many people who attempt to define science make valid but fragmentary definition of it. Little do people realize that many of man’s daily activities involve doing science? For example, when you wake up in the morning and take a glass of water and not kerosene you are doing science. When your mother strikes a stick of match, light a candle and watches it melts, she is doing science. When the baker adds yeast to floor to make it rise, he too is doing science. The barber in your village also does science when he applies soap solution to his customer’s hair to make it soft, for he is applying the knowledge of science. Thus, science is not magical as some people think. Science is all around us. Science is a dynamic human activity concerned with understanding of the working of our world. Science stands for a variety of information, abilities and operations about the natural environment. Science is more concerned with various investigative processes and activities with regards to developing acquiring and controlling knowledge, skills, and capabilities attitudes about the natural factors of the environment. From these processes reliable and verifiable information are accumulated for use in science and other disciplines. Scientists viewed science as “a body of knowledge arrived at through systematic and procedural processes based on tentative observations and experiment”. In the sight of the above, science may be viewed as a way of thinking in the pursuit of understanding nature, a way of investigating and a body of established knowledge. Thus, science is a product as a well as a process. Science in the world today wouldn’t have been what it is, Technological advancement has completely changed the world. This has permeated into all spheres of our lives which include communications, health, agriculture, building etc. Exploration of the universe and improvement in conditions of living in our homes, schools, roads etc are all based on science in terms of modern equipment and materials.

With the world changing very fast as a result of human activities and population growth, what may save our planet earth is scientific inquiring for solutions to prevailing problems and those we may face in the future. Some biological research has been carried out by scientists leading to many discoveries in medicine, technology, agriculture and genetics. It is observed that effective teaching and learning require accurate and exact observations, carefulness and thoroughness of technique and logical interpretation of data. He emphasized that practical work is the part of the study of biology and should go hand in hand with theory.

As Nigeria tries to make a mark in technical development, the teaching of biology was advocated for, in recent times by the federal government. This is because of the realization that biology and technology were the bedrock from which developed industrialized countries of the world evolved. All other aspects of human life revolve around science which means, without biology science all aspects of life will be meaningless. Biology is quite interesting in advanced countries of the world where practical work is given the priority and students are able to see for themselves what is taught in the class.

Attitudes plays an important role towards the future of science students. Students attitude towards science affects the science academic performance. Identifying as well as influencing their attitude is significant in educational research studies [1]. The study of biology in Nigeria is vital towards the success of students, it is compulsory subjects for both art and science students. Biology is offered in private and public secondary schools. Biology as a discipline tends to study all living things and their interaction in the biosphere. Biology is also the study of plants and animals including human beings.

As a science subject, biology help students to develop their practical skills on experimental work as observation accurate recording, logical reasoning and effective manipulation of equipments. Attitude could be positive, negative and neutral [2]. Attitude are like academic achievement because they are significant factors in ensuring students success. Students success in science is aff by their attitude towards science subjects. To enhance their achievement, it is good to identify the type of attitude they have towards the subject so as to help them [1]. A study conducted by [3] found out that students attitude towards Biology is neutral. Improving their interest in biology will boost their learning outcome in biology.

In the light of the above, it should be a general concern of every Nigerian including the researchers to view this backwardness with some seriousness. There is great need to look into the issue of teaching and learning of the core science subjects such as biology.

1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM.

There are many problems associated with teaching biology practical in schools, such as lack of good laboratory, lack of qualified teachers, poor attitude of students towards biology practical, no excursions or field trips and inadequate instructional materials. Some students have lost interest in biology practical partially or totally. Most of these problems exist in most secondary schools and serve as barriers in the teaching biology practical.

1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY.

The main objective of the study is the Perception of students and teachers to biology practical in secondary school.

1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS.

1. What is biology practical?

2. What is perception of students and teachers towards biology practical in secondary school?

3. What can be done to improve the interest of students and teachers in biology practical?

 

1.5  SIGNIFICANCE OF THE  STUDY.

Biology is one of the subjects which improves the interaction between human beings and his/ her environment. Human beings live to appreciate the meaning of scientific life, to develop unbiased mind and to be intellectual homes which serves as ideal to the future citizen. Fortunately, it is a fact that biology is the commonly chosen science subject of most secondary school pupil. This is confirmed by the West African Examination Council (WAEC). Therefore, there is need to study the perception of students and teachers towards biology practical and find the best way to improve it.

1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY.

This study focus on the perception of students and teachers to biology practical in secondary school.

REFERENCES.

1. Prokop P. Tuncers G. and Chuda J. (2007). Slovakian students' attitudes towards biology. Eurasia Journal of mathematics, science and Technology Education 3(4), 287-295.

2. Khan G.N. and Ali A. (2012). Higher secondary school students' attitude towards chemistry. Asian social science 8(6), 165.

3. Usak, M. Prokop, P. Ozel M., Bilen K.and Erdogan, M. (2009). Turkish University students' attitudes towards biology; The effects of gender and enrollment in biology classes. Journal of Baltic science Education 8(2).

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