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Title: Investigation of school-based factors affecting the enrolment and attainment of senior secondary school physics students in Rivers State, Nigeria
Author: Adolphus, Telima
ISNI:       0000 0004 5990 5461
Awarding Body: University of York
Current Institution: University of York
Date of Award: 2016
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This study addresses the question what school-based factors influence enrolment and attainment in physics in the senior school certificate examinations in Rivers State, Nigeria? In Nigeria, low enrolment in physics is coupled with concerns about levels of attainment. One outcome of this situation is interest in effective teaching and learning in the subject in Nigeria. Purposive sampling was utilized to select 8 schools in high and low performing local government areas of Rivers State to ensure boys’, girls’ and co-educational schools were represented. All 14 physics teachers in the schools participated in the study, together with 248 physics students and 116 non-physics students. A mixed methods research design was adopted for the study. The research instruments comprised questionnaires for teachers and students, interviews, classroom observations and a Physics Attainment Test developed specifically for the study. Descriptive statistics and correlations were utilised for quantitative data analysis alongside qualitative data coding and analysis. The study found that teachers’ qualifications, resource availability and utilization and the teaching strategies that teachers adopt all significantly influence students’ physics enrolment and attainment. However, particularly for attainment, teachers’ years of teaching do not significantly influence student attainment. Also, there was no significant difference in the correlations of teacher and resource factors with attainment and enrolment by gender. The study proposes a number of recommendations. To boost students’ interest in physics, teachers need to present content in ways that connect physics ideas to the everyday experiences of students. Policy makers should consider making the study of science compulsory in all classes in secondary schools with the introduction of ‘science for arts’ for the non-science oriented students. Of particular importance is the need for a consistent and conscientious government policy to provide schools with qualified physics teachers and science laboratory facilities.
Supervisor: Bennett, Judith ; Airey, Jeremy Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available