BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The quality of education is determined by the instructor, as evidenced by their pupils’ performance. Teachers have an important influence in students’ educational success since they are ultimately accountable for transforming ideas based on practice into actions during interactions with students. Qualification, motivation, and experience are all characteristics that may influence a teacher’s productivity. Teacher Qualification refers to a teacher’s first education and training in order to work as a teacher. The Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE) is the minimal certification for teaching in elementary schools, according to the National Policy on Education (2004).
Importantly, since the introduction of Universal Primary Education (UPE) in the 1970s and Universal Basic Education (UBE) in 1994, the Nigerian educational system has seen an increased trend in school enrolment at all levels. This may have had an influence on class size in terms of the population of individual classrooms, with metropolitan regions having a higher enrolment than rural locations. In secondary schools, the national policy on education specifies a teacher-to-student ratio of 1:40. According to Wosayanju (2005), big classes can provide certain teaching issues, such as delayed feedback, which can lead to inefficiency, poor student quality, and a reduction in instruction with fewer assignments to alleviate the stress of marking, all of which can lead to shallow learning. The amount of years a teacher has been practicing the craft of teaching is referred to as their experience. They believe that the finest teacher is experience. A more experienced teacher is more likely to be effective in class management, identifying individual differences, and improvising instructional aids. Despite his degree of preparation, a newly hired teacher may find the practice challenging in the first few months, but as time goes on, he gains confidence and may be able to devise alternative techniques to cope with various sorts of classroom problems. Students taught by more experienced teachers achieve higher levels, according to a study conducted by Olatunde (2009) on the influence of teachers’ experience on students’ achievement. This is because their teachers have mastered the content and acquired classroom management skills to deal with various classroom problems. This is decided by the qualifications, experience, and motivation of the teachers. Another research of teacher and student characteristics as correlates of learning result in mathematics by Chako (1981) discovered that the instructor’s attitude toward teaching strongly predicts students’ attitude as well as mathematical success.
Qualified teachers have a tendency to seek employment at schools in metropolitan areas, particularly in state capitals, where more school facilities and services are concentrated. Teachers with the most advanced training are sent to the larger cities, and especially to the capital. This and other data abound on the gap in teacher quality between urban and rural schools, which, in turn, affects students’ academic achievement. At his inquiry, Ibukun (1988) discovered that instructors in urban secondary schools in the Federal Capital Territory are more qualified, despite the fact that such a lopsided resource distribution was not a planned government policy. In his conclusion, he stated that rural schools are likely to grow more understaffed as a result of teachers’ personal aversion to serve in remote regions. Their educational life are marked by decaying buildings that create extensions to existing ones, making a patchwork with others, eventually becoming too old and no longer feasible.
STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
Nigeria has struggled with low student performance in secondary school final examinations such as the senior secondary school leaving certificate examinations (SSCE), National Examination Council (NECO), and NABTEB since the 1980s,. As a result, the federal and state governments have adopted various tactics and policies to address the problem. Some experts have linked the rise in student bad performance to teaher’s attitude. McKeachie (1983), Roe & McDonald (1983), Marsh (1987), and Marsh & Dunkin (1991), for example, discovered favorable attitudes toward students’ teacher evaluations. Teachers’ attitudes can support or damage student motivation, achievement, and well-being. Negative teacher attitudes have been linked to lower academic success, increased psychiatric problems, and physical stress indicators in pupils, according to recent research. These studies show that student evaluations are relevant and accurate, and that they have a favorable relationship with teaching effectiveness when compared to other metrics. Other research, on the other hand, haven’t found the same level of enthusiasm. Student assessment of instructors was scored seventh out of ten distinct approaches in terms of perceived validity in a study by Kauchak et al (1985), however this same methodology was ranked eighth out of nine available evaluation methodologies in a study by Newton & Braithwaite (1988). Student teacher ratings came in seventh place out of six options analyzed by Stark and Lowther (1984). All of these studies included teachers from both primary and secondary schools.
The fact that the majority of these studies were done abroad, mostly in the United States, is a fundamental flaw. Similar studies in the Nigerian context are urgently needed to determine the attitudes and perceptions of Nigerian teachers toward teaching. It is also vital to determine whether there particular variable of teachers that have an impact on the attitudes exhibited by teacher which in turn impact student academic achievement. These are the issues that need to be addressed, and hence the study’s basis. Upon this premise that the study, presents a review on the impact of teachers variables on senior secondary students academic performance.
OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The broad objective of this study is to determine the impact of teachers variables on senior secondary students academic performance. Specifically, the study seeks to:
i. To ascertain the school environment factors affect teachers’ attitude towards teaching.
ii. To investigate whether teacher’s qualification and subject knowledge have any effect on his or her attitude towards teaching.
iii. To determine whether the teaching experience and professional status of a teacher have any influence on the attitude of teachers to teaching profession.
iv. To examine whether the teachers’ gender affect his or attitude to teaching profession.
The following are some of the questions which this study intends to answer:
i. Does the school environment factors affect teachers’ attitude towards teaching?
ii. Does teacher’s qualification and subject knowledge have any effect on his or her attitude towards teaching?
iii. Does the teaching experience and professional status of a teacher have any influence on the attitude of teachers to teaching profession.?
iv. Does the teachers’ gender affect his or attitude to teaching profession.\
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
Findings from this study will be beneficial to the following stakeholders in the education sector: Teachers are the translators of educational policies into practice. The teachers‘ role in education is very important; without the teacher the whole educational plans will be a total failure. Therefore would -be teachers will be informed of their importance to the educational process; they will be enlightened on their need to consider the students and resolve to put in their best so that students can also be assisted to be at their best. The policy makers will find the findings of this work useful in that it will enable them to know the relationship between the variables. That emphasis should not be on enrolment but the teacher factor should also be considered in any planning. The parents will find the findings of this work useful as they will be enlightened on the importance of the teacher in the educational sector, those that perceive the teacher negatively will be orientated to view the teacher positively. This can be achieved through sensitization in the Parent Teachers Association (PTA) meeting. Government would be made to see the need to bridge the gap between the rural and urban schools by providing the rural dwellers the social amenities which will enhance better academic performance of students in their final examinations like the SSCE. The study will also serve as a reference material to scholars and student who wishes to conduct further studies in related field.
SCOPE AND DELIMITATION
The scope of this study borders on the impact of teachers variables on senior secondary students academic performance. Further discusses was how these variable were influenced by certain characteristics (e.g. gender, geographical location, academic qualifications, teaching experience and professional status) thus impacting student academic achievement in Nigeria. The study is however delimited Abaji Area Council in FCT Abuja.
DEFINITION OF TERMS
Students’ Academic Achievement: this is the scores obtained by the students after completion of a learning experience. For the purpose of this study, this is determined by their scores in the 2014 State Qualifying Examinations. All through the study, academic achievement and performance is used interchangeably.
Teacher Qualification: The highest academic qualification obtained by the A teacher that has M. Ed, B. Ed is considered highly qualified, NCE less qualified while M. Sc, HND without a PGDE is considered not-qualified.
Teacher Experience: The number of years the teacher has put into active service as a teacher. 1-3 years is considered less- Experienced while above 3 years is considered as Experienced.
Teachers: Teachers are all those that are professionally skilled and certificated as a result of training in educational and related courses to improve knowledge to learners.