VALUE OF DEMONSTRATION AND DISCOVERY PROCEDURES IN TEACHING AGRICULTURAL EDUCATION IN ACADEMIES OF EDUCATION IN NORTH-WEST ZONE, NIGERIA

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VALUE OF DEMONSTRATION AND DISCOVERY PROCEDURES IN TEACHING AGRICULTURAL EDUCATION IN ACADEMIES OF EDUCATION IN NORTH-WEST ZONE, NIGERIA

ABSTRACT

The study was carried out to determine the effectiveness of demonstration and discovery teaching methods in agricultural education in colleges of education in North-west zone Nigeria. Pre-test, post-test quasi experimental design was adopted for the study. The study had three (3) specific objectives three research questions and three null hypotheses. The entire 1010 NCE II Agricultural education students of the twelve (12) colleges of education in North-west zone formed population for the study.  A total number of 312 NCE II Students from three colleges of education formed the sample for the study. The instrument used for data collection was a 40 – item multiple choice agricultural education achievement test (AEAT) which was administer to students before and after exposing them to demonstration and discovery method Scores obtained were analyzed using mean, standard deviation and t-test statistics.  The findings showed that, both demonstration and discovery methods of teaching had significant effect on the academic performance of agricultural education students, however, demonstration was found to be more effective than the discovery method. It was concluded that demonstration method enhanced students‟ ability to handle agricultural manipulations. The researcher therefore recommended among other things that curriculum planners should emphasize the importance of using demonstration in teaching agricultural education in colleges of education in north-west zone Nigeria, and encourage their use in teaching and learning procedures.

 

 

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1         Background to the Study

Education is seen as an instrument for national development (FGN 2004). The future of any nation rest solemnly in the hands of its teachers because no education system can rise above the level of its teachers (Ayatse 2006). The quality of teachers reflects the behavior of the citizens of future tomorrow, hence there is need to give substantial attention to the mode of preparing Nigerian certificate in education (NCE) teachers. In order to achieve this, one should look seriously into the process and procedure of training teachers of colleges of education.

Agricultural science is one of the core subjects taught in both junior and senior secondary schools in Nigeria for its promising role in promoting self reliance through the provision of employment opportunities and production of staple foods for the populace together with supply of materials for the agro-allied industries. The teaching of agricultural science as a course in our schools and colleges has been made compulsory by the federal government of Nigeria to achieve the goal of education.

Colleges of education are among the tertiary institutions that are saddled with the responsibility of training teachers of agricultural science for primary and junior secondary schools in Nigeria, under the supervision of national commission for colleges of education

(NCCE). Colleges of education are to train middle class teachers in various fields of studies

(NCCE 2008).Agricultural education is one of such programmes that lead to the award of NCE. This programme emphasizes on the preparation of students for gainful employment in production agriculture and in business related to agriculture. However, the main aim of designing NCE agricultural education programme is to produce competent agricultural education teachers who will be able to inculcate scientific as well as technical values in the learners.Agricultural education is perceived by an average Nigerian student, as 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 in the classroom and on the field during teaching and learning process are not impressive (Adah, 2011).

Teaching methods according to Hassan (2002) are the approaches, ways and strategies that a teacher adopts in conducting his lesson to a successful end. Mamman (2002) also defines teaching methods as the ways of teaching which involve a series of teacher directed activities that result into pupils‟ learning. Teaching methods comprise of principles and strategies used for instruction (Daluba, 2013). Teaching methods are the tools of the teacher for reaching the set goals and objectives.Teaching method can be described as the way the teacher organizes teaching processes. It is a process of imparting knowledge ideas and skills into a person or group of persons. It also means a guideline for promoting, teaching and learning which involve various ways of manipulating instructional resources and communication to make the learner receive the teachers‟ message clearly. Teaching method can therefore be said to be the most fundamental aspect of education and it is a central issues in teaching. Every successful teacher must have ability to pass his knowledge to the learners in order to be regarded as an effective teacher.

Demonstration method refers to the type of teaching method in which the teacher is the principal actor while the learners watch with the intention to act later. Mubi (2002) views demonstration as the method of teaching through examples or experiment. It is a method that can be used to prove a fact through a combination of visual evidence and associated reasoning.

Demonstration involves the teacher showing students how to do something. According Adekunle(2000) demonstration method involves showing by reason or proof, explaining or making clear by use of examples or experiments. Demonstrations are very effective when students have a hard time connecting theories to actual practice or when students are unable to understand the application of theories (Ahmed, 2002). Demonstration method is important in teaching agricultural education because, it is the teaching method that allows the teacher to carryout out certain task step-by-step in the presence of the learners with the view of either showing them how to do it themselves or demonstrating a principle. According to Agatha (2002), demonstration is an effective instructional technique that enhances motivation of students by teachers of agriculture. Also Ebrahimi (2006) classified demonstration into two:  method demonstration and result demonstration. Method demonstration involves showing students how to carry out a practice or how to use certain materials. Examples of method demonstrations include how to use a sprayer, different methods of planting, different methods of fertilizer application, seed treatment, and different methods of pest and disease control (Adekoya, 2011). Result demonstration is used to show the end product of a new practice and to show that, the new practice is visible. According to Adekoya (2011) result demonstration is very useful as it justifies the reason for performing certain task or embarking on a new principle. It shows the result of a certain practice. If properly carried out demonstration can generate a great deal of interest and enthusiasm for a practice as well as providing the skill subjects. However, many people may not be able to practice the skill demonstrated adequately due to shortage of time or facilities (Sequira, 2012). Demonstration method is not effective when the number of students is too large (Emaikwu, 2012)

According to Bruner (1961), discovery is in essence a matter of re-arranging or transforming evidence in such a way that one is enabled to go beyond the evidence and reassemble additional new knowledge. Bruner further stressed that the word discovery means finding out. It is therefore a process through which students find out facts or knowledge through the understanding of concepts. By the definition, discovery implies “induction”. By it, students proceed from specific example (percepts) to concepts and from concepts to a generalization or principle. Mandrin and Preckel (2009) observed that three basic words are paramount in the discovery method.  They are precepts, concepts and generalization.  Discovery approach is one of the instructional strategies used in effective teaching of agricultural education. Smith (2001) reported that in discovery method of teaching, the learners find out by themselves the new knowledge. Discovery method is a method of inquiry-based instruction and is considered a constructivist based approach to education. Discovery learning takes place in problem solving situations where the learner draws on his own experience and prior knowledge. Demonstration and discovery methods of teaching are some of the methods that can be adopted for teaching practical Agriculture education. These methods also can impact knowledge of agricultural education at various levels of education. The need to ascertain the effectiveness of these methods arose because other teaching methods may not be suitable in all cases, with particular reference to agricultural education. This led the researcher to undertake this study to ascertain the effectiveness of the two methods on student‟s academic performance in colleges of education.

Academic performance is an important parameter in measuring success in students. Students‟ academic performance refers to students‟ achievement in the topic taught based on the stated objectives. Edinyang and Ubi(2012) defined academic performance as the outcome of education which reveals the extent to which a student, teacher or institution has achieved educational goals. Academic performance or achievement is commonly measured by examinations or continous assessment (Abdulhamid,2013). According to denga (2012) learning is said to occur if there is a positive change in behavior or performance which is a result of experience and practice and which makes individuals face later situations differently. Hence, an individual is assumed to have learnt techniques and skills if there is a remarkable change in his academic performance during and after the course of his programme (Camilus, 2011). Academic performance is an outcome of interest to both researchers and professionals within the field of education. An important question that is raised by educators, parents and often society is how high academic performance in students can be promoted and what factors or context has an influence on academic performance throughout a child‟s development.

There are several micro and macro context that have impact on students‟ academic performance and one of the context that have been studied is the classroom context. Kounin and Gump (2005) reported that the classroom context (such as method of teaching) has distinctive forces or “signals” different to other contexts which pull events and participation along with them. Considering these relationship between the variables, the researcher examined the

“effectiveness of demonstration and discovery method of teaching agricultural education in colleges of education in north-west zone, Nigeria.

1.2         Statement of the Problem

Agricultural education is a practical course that requires to be taught practically by making teaching situation as real as possible. Teaching and learning of agriculture have been affected by the negative view of many, that it is a course/field for never-do-wells, or drop-outs. Agricultural education is a vocational course which is geared towards acquisition of agriculture related skills, knowledge and competency required for both paid and self employment. As a course which involves both classrooms and field experience, the need to choose and use the most suitable teaching methods cannot be over-stressed. What students learn is greatly influenced by how they are taught. Instructors teaching agricultural education curricula have implemented a wide variety of teaching methods which fit different niches within the agricultural classroom (Abdulhamid, 2013). Some methods of teaching are completely out of touch with background and local environments of the learners. According to Abdulhamid (2013), organizing for effective teaching in agricultural education is centered on certain factors such as what to teach, when to teach and how to teach. The teacher does not only teach the most relevant, meaningful and useful materials for specific students, he must also recognize and adopt a good and well-researched method of teaching that guarantees better understanding and also stimulates and motivates the students.

It is now being recognized that there are better ways to learn than through the traditional methods (Wood and Gentile, 2003). Educators are beginning to show an increased awareness of the importance of the way students learn. Many of our standard methods of conveying knowledge have been shown to be relatively ineffective in the student ability to master and retain important concepts as learning through some of these methods is passive rather than active. These methods (lecture, discussion) do not tend to foster critical thinking creative adoption and collaborative problem-solving (Wood and Gentile, 2003).

Among the methods used in teaching agricultural education in colleges of education, demonstration and discovery methods of teaching were chosen because they are the most common methods adopted in teaching at this level. It was observed that demonstration and guided discovery methods of teaching agricultural education can be suitable for acquiring competency required by agricultural education students for them to fit into the labour market.  Hence, It is the belief of the researcher that effective methods of teaching will go a long way in ensuring pragmatic teaching and learning. Therefore, this study set out to investigate whether demonstration and discovery methods could lead to a better academic performance of agricultural education students in colleges of education.

1.3         Objectives of the Study

The broad objective of the study is to ascertain the effectiveness of demonstration and discovery methods in teaching Agricultural education in colleges of education in North-west zone of Nigeria. The specific objectives of the study were to:

  • determine the academic performance of agricultural education students taught using demonstration method in colleges of education in north-west zone Nigeria;
  • ascertain the academic performance of agricultural education students taught using discovery method in colleges of education in north-west zone, Nigeria; and
  • determine the difference in the academic performance of agricultural education students taught using demonstration and discovery methods of teaching in colleges of education in north-west zone, Nigeria.

1.4         Research Questions

The following research questions were raised to guide this study

  1. What is the academic performance of agric education students taught with demonstration method in colleges of education in north-west zone, Nigeria?
  2. What is the academic performance of agric education students taught with discovery method in colleges of education in north-west zone, Nigeria?
  3. What is the difference in the performance of agric education students taught with demonstration and discovery method of teaching in colleges of education in north-west zone, Nigeria?

1.5         Null Hypotheses

In line with each of the research questions, the following null hypotheses were formulated to be tested at 5% level of significance.

  1. Demonstration method has no significant effects on the academic performance of agricultural education students of colleges of education in north-west zone, Nigeria;
  2. Discovery method has no significant effects on the academic performance of agricultural education students in colleges of education in north-west zone, Nigeria; and
  3. There is no significant difference between the academic performance of agricultural education students taught using demonstration method and those taught using discovery method in colleges of education in north-west zone, Nigeria.

1.6         Significance of the Study

The findings of the study would be useful to curriculum developers and planners in education sector especially the national commission for colleges of education for the task of reviewing agricultural education programme. Emphasis should be laid on the teaching methods that will lead to acquisition of desirable skills in this course.

The result of this study would also be useful to teachers of agricultural education in colleges of education. It will help themconcentrate their efforts in using teaching methods that will bring out the best in their students and improve their effectiveness in carrying out their task. Consequently, the study result is expected to identify and recommend teaching methods most appropriate for the field.

This study would also benefit students of agricultural education in colleges of education since their time will be effectively utilized in acquiring the much desired competency required of them to be gainfully employed or self reliant. Since the general motive that, the use of inappropriate teaching methods contributes to poor performance of students in agricultural education. For this reason, when the most appropriate teaching methods are identified and implemented by agricultural education teachers, will go a long way to improve students‟ performance agricultural sciences.

This study would also be useful to the society in general; thus, includes the government and the immediate community. The study is in line with the federal government effort to enhance teaching of science syllabus in the country. In this respect, the government will be aware of the importance of using appropriate teaching method to achieve this goal. The work will also create awareness to the government on the importance of providing adequate relevant facilities and equipments needed for effective teaching and learning using appropriate method.

The study will also benefit colleges of education as a guide on the use of methods of teaching suitable at this level of education that will ensure the production of quality students and teachers in agriculture. The findings and recommendation of this study would also

contribute to existing literature in this area of agricultural education.

1.7         Basic Assumption of the Study

The following assumptions were made in this study:

  1. Demonstration and discovery teaching methods areinstructional methods rarely used in colleges of education for teaching agricultural education.
  2. Demonstration and discovery methods cannot be attested aseffective methods for learning agricultural education in colleges of education.
  3. Demonstration and discovery teaching methods are not likely used to promote agricultural skill acquisition and competency in agricultural education in colleges of educations and in other levels.

1.8 Delimitation of the Study

This study was delimited to the use of demonstration and discovery methods for teaching agricultural education to test student‟s learning to real life context of what is taught theoretically in class. This study was delimited to NCE II students of agricultural education in colleges of education in North-west zone, Nigeria. This study was also delimited to livestock management(breeds identification, classification, systems of keeping ruminant and non- ruminants) being part oftopics in the minimum standard for NCE II students of agricultural education.

VALUE OF DEMONSTRATION AND DISCOVERY PROCEDURES IN TEACHING AGRICULTURAL EDUCATION IN ACADEMIES OF EDUCATION IN NORTH-WEST ZONE, NIGERIA

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