School Variables and Students Academic Performance in Social Studies


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1.1   Background to the study

Learning is a complex activity that puts a student’s motivation and physical condition to test. Teaching resources, teachers skill and curriculum-all these play a vital role in a child’s education one may wonder if the physical condition and design of the school facilities really influence a child’s learning experience. Every school day, many schools and teachers struggle with such problems as noise, glare, mildew, lack of fresh air, hot or cold temperatures, lack of book in the library, lack of apparatus in laboratories and a host of other problems.

According to the National Center For Education Statistic (NCES) about 40 percent of our schools report unsatisfactory environmental conditions. News about these environmental nuisances is beginning to appear more and more in the media. And research is uncovering growing evidence that conditions like these and many other aspects of school facilities have a huge and often negative impact on children’s education.

Learning environment is viewed as the sum total of the factors within the school setting external to the individual that tends to influence his achievement as a learner. It includes authority patterns, social and emotional relations (Essien, 2016).

According to skinner (1980) “A person is not an indifferent spectator soaking up in the world like sponge”. The ways Nigerian students perceive their school environment depend on what has happened to them at that particular school, how they interpreted events or what meaning events have for them.

It also depends on their past experiences as well as their attitude towards the elements in the school setting. The ways student  perceive a school variables can be explained at least partially by the degree of interpersonal relationship between them. The tone of the interpersonal interaction and friendliness among students exert some influence on their perceptions on their school environment and their academic performance.

In several ways, the kind of attitude a student has affects school, work and learning. If he/she has positive perception about teachers and likes school, it is almost inevitable that he will experience influence on their perceptions of the school environment. It is almost inevitable that he will experience some measure of success and through enforcement feeling of achievement will work more effectively and achieve more nearly to his capacity conversely, negative perception towards schools and teachers usually signify that all energies towards learning prove abortive.

A more systematic problem is age. The average school today, at 30 years old, faces demands that more never intended or even conceived when the building was built. Education is being delivered in an entirely new manner, with new tools techniques, and teaching methods that don’t fit the simplistic convention of 35 years old school designs. There is a growing body of literature that provides evidence to a link between school building adequacy and students academic performance. One may examine link between school facilities and student’s performance may be school climate. School climate may be a mediating variable explaining at least in past.


School Variables and Students Academic Performance in Social Studies

1.2 Statement of Problem                                  

In spite of the fact that school produces every great person’s today attention is hardly given to the system. The structures are left in a state of decay and dilapidation. The classroom no longer holds comfort in learning. In Nigeria public schools particularly  have been disdained and the seems to be a general lack of concern about the state of the school variable, there are insufficiency in terms of academic equipment inadequate space for classrooms, poorly equipped laboratories with libraries furnished with outdated books and material, even poor layout out of the school in terms of building office, accommodation and road network (Yusut,2018).

All these factors, however contributes to the low academic performance of students. This is because the school variable determines the level of performance a student puts on. What a student sees in the school environment it’s physical layout and other psychological factor influences a student academic performance.

This is why the researcher is prompted to also it school variables influences the academic performance of students in government using those of Etim Ekpo Local Education Committee as a reference point. The deleterious impact that poor school facilities has no learning. It may be the dilapidated, crowded, or uncomfortable school buildings leads to low morale and to reduced effect on the part of teachers and students like to reduced, community engagement with a school and even to loss positive forms of school leadership. It may be that droop in performance when school facilities for the inadequate. This problem is not peculiar to Nigerian school only.

Kozel (1991) in the U.S. complained that the condition of the nation’s school buildings has recently entered into public discourse through Bill Moyer’s (1995) television special, “children in American school” where he expose on the conditions under which many low-income students are educated.


1.3   Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study was to determine school variables and students academic performance in Social Studies in secondary schools in Etim Ekpo Local Government Area.

(1) To determine the influence of students –student relationship on the academic achievement of secondary school student in Social Studies.

(2) To assess the influence of the state of school library on student’s academic performance in secondary school in Social Studies.

(3) To investigate the influence of the school building on students academic performance in secondary school in Social Studies.

School Variables and Students Academic Performance in Social Studies

1.4 Research Questions

  The study sought to answer the following question:

(1) How do students- students’ interactions affect academic performance of students in secondary school in Social Studies?

(2) What influence dose the states of School library have on student’s academic performance in secondary school in Social Studies.

(3) Do school buildings affect student’s academic performance in secondary school in Social Studies?


1.5 Research Hypotheses

The null hypotheses formulated for the study were:

(1) There is no significant difference between the mean Social Studies performance scores of students who study in group and who study on their own.

(2) The difference between the mean performance scores of students from school with well equipped current text books in Social Studies is not statistically significant.

(3) There is no significant difference between the mean performance scores of students studying in a spacious and well ventilated classroom and those studying in an overcrowded and poorly ventilated classroom.

School Variables and Students Academic Performance in Social Studies

1.6 Significant Of the Study

In the early day, most of the schools were owed by the missionaries. The student populations were relatively small such that their beneficiaries were accommodated in the school where eyes of the trainers are directly on them. The few school were fairly staffed and equipped meet the required standard.

Today changes in the society have given rise to multiplication of schools and expulsion to the population of students. Most of these schools are day schools and located in rural areas. The strength of students in many schools out weight the facilities, equipment and man power available when the learning population-students, suffer the consequences arising from these unconducive school variable.

      Bearing this in mind the study poise to:

(i)   Identify some of the factors in school variable and student academic performance in Social Studies.

(ii)   Offer suggestion to check such factor

(iii)  Help the government and other stake-holder in education to make proper provision and policies for the teaming population of the school.

(iv)  Increase the volume of the existing literature on the effect school variables and student academic performance.

(v)  Offer suggestion for future study.


1.7 Delimitation of the Study

For the purpose of this study, the researcher has delimited the study to Etim Ekpo Local Government Area only. Among the numerous variables linked with the school environment, students-students interaction, the state nature of the school environment will be considered.

The learning experience in Social Studies used in Social Studies Performance Test (SOSPT) was limited to all the topics indicated on the scheme of work for Social Studies in junior secondary school (JS1) to (JS3) in junior secondary school in Akwa Ibom State


1.8 Definition of Terms

School Variables: School variables are used in this work designates the composition of the physical, social and academic tones of the social compound. It involves the physical school layout, the building the basic facilities, it’s organization and discipline. This is the level of academic success a student attained in a given test after studying hard.

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