Effect of Computer Assisted Instructional Package on Students' Learning Outcomes in Basic Science

Effect of Computer Assisted Instructional Package on Students' Learning Outcomes in Basic Science

Simeon O. Olajide (Obafemi Awolowo University, Ife, Nigeria) and Francisca O. Aladejana (Obafemi Awolowo University, Ife, Nigeria)
DOI: 10.4018/IJTESSS.2019010101

Abstract

The study developed the basic science information and communication technology (BSICT) instructional package based on Nigerian Junior Secondary School (JSS) curriculum and investigated its effect on the students' learning outcomes with the aim of improving them. The study employed the pre-test, post-test, control group quasi-experimental research design. From a population of all JSS in Osun State, a sample of 180 students from six intact classes in six purposively selected schools was taken. The experimental groups were taught using the BSICT package while the control groups were taught the same concepts without the package. Data was collected using the Basic Science Achievement Test and analysed. The results showed significant effects of the package on students' performance and retention ability in basic science. The study concluded that BSICT could be used to improve students' learning outcomes in basic science if properly proctored. Hence, the use of computer assisted instruction can be recommended for teaching and learning for improved performance and retention.
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Introduction

The impact of ICT on learning is currently in relation to use of digital media, primarily computers and internet to facilitate teaching and learning. ICTs are the technologies used in conveying, manipulating and storage of data by electronic means. They provide an array of powerful tools that may help in transforming the present isolated teacher-centred and text-bound classrooms into rich, student-focused, interactive knowledge environments. To meet these challenges, learning institutions must embrace the new technologies and appropriate ICT tools for learning. The potential benefits of Computer Assisted Instruction (CAI) cannot be underestimated in the contemporary world. There is a plethora of established findings on the instructional value of computer, particularly in advanced countries. There are now several CAI packages on different subjects. It is obvious that the current trend in research, all over the world, is the use of computer facilities and resources to enhance students’ learning. Thus, Laroche, Wulfsberg, and Young (2003) opined that many exercises that depart from traditional method are now readily accessible on the web, even though teachers do not often use these facilities. They further showed that the interactive approaches to teaching significantly enhance learning.

Likewise in all areas, the continuing speedy development of information technologies in education presents the required environment for development and usage of different method instruments. It is thought that effective use of information technologies will lead to an increase in teaching quality. The impact of science to national development cannot be overlooked and it is clearly apparent that science subjects are necessary for the development of science and technology which has become an integral part of the society in the modern world. It is also an important component in achieving national goals and targets in alleviating poverty.

Recognizing the importance of science to the nation’s development and to prepare students to become future scientists, the Federal Government of Nigeria introduced the teaching of Basic Science into the Junior Secondary School (JSS) curriculum where their knowledge of content can be manifested through a demonstration process of some kind of generic skills known as learning outcomes, (FRN, 2014). According to Lesch and Brown (2010), learning outcomes which are basically knowledge, skills or attitudes are statements that describe significant and essential learning that learners have achieved, and can reliably be demonstrated at the end of a programme or course. Unfortunately, students’ performance and attitude towards science learning in schools have been consistently poor in public examinations (Aladejana, 2007 & 2009; Ojedokun & Aladejana, 2013; Omorogbe & Ewansiha 2013 and Olajide & Aladejana, 2016).

Studies have shown that teachers are very important in determining students’ learning outcomes in schools and that teacher’s methods of teaching and learning materials contribute to poor academic performance, (Cox, 2010; Agboola & Oloyede, 2013 and Aladejana, 2015). The impact of teachers on performance in any school subject is very high. The teachers are the facilitators who are to impact the theories and concepts into the students. They are the major manpower saddled with the responsibility of imparting the concepts considered fundamental to technology through the teaching of basic concepts in science subjects in the secondary schools.

According to FRN (2014), no educational system may rise beyond the quality of its teachers; while Ajayi (2009) also noted in his study that a country’s manpower development depends on the quality of her well qualified teachers and mode of instruction. According to Olajide and Aladejana (2016), the most important factor that generally influences better performance of students in science is the teacher and the teaching methods adopted. This implies that teachers could use their occupational skills to manipulate all other factors and gear the skills towards improving students’ knowledge in the sciences.

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