PERCEPTION OF STUDENTS AND TEACHERS TO BIOLOGY PRACTICAL IN SECONDARY SCHOOL.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY.
The words “science” is often
misconstrued by many people. While some view it as a white man’s “juju”,
others construe it as a kind of magic, like the tero blind men who went
to see the elephant, many people who attempt to define science make
valid but fragmentary definition of it. Little do people realize that
many of man’s daily activities involve doing science? For example, when
you wake up in the morning and take a glass of water and not kerosene
you are doing science. When your mother strikes a stick of match, light a
candle and watches it melts, she is doing science. When the baker adds
yeast to floor to make it rise, he too is doing science. The barber in
your village also does science when he applies soap solution to his
customer’s hair to make it soft, for he is applying the knowledge of
science. Thus, science is not magical as some people think. Science is
all around us. Science is a dynamic human activity concerned with
understanding of the working of our world. Science stands for a variety
of information, abilities and operations about the natural environment.
Science is more concerned with various investigative processes and
activities with regards to developing acquiring and controlling
knowledge, skills, and capabilities attitudes about the natural factors
of the environment. From these processes reliable and verifiable
information are accumulated for use in science and other disciplines.
Scientists viewed science as “a body of knowledge arrived at through
systematic and procedural processes based on tentative observations and
experiment”. In the sight of the above, science may be viewed as a way
of thinking in the pursuit of understanding nature, a way of
investigating and a body of established knowledge. Thus, science is a
product as a well as a process. Science in the world today wouldn’t have
been what it is, Technological advancement has completely changed the
world. This has permeated into all spheres of our lives which include
communications, health, agriculture, building etc. Exploration of the
universe and improvement in conditions of living in our homes, schools,
roads etc are all based on science in terms of modern equipment and
With the world changing very fast as a
result of human activities and population growth, what may save our
planet earth is scientific inquiring for solutions to prevailing
problems and those we may face in the future. Some biological research
has been carried out by scientists leading to many discoveries in
medicine, technology, agriculture and genetics. It is observed that
effective teaching and learning require accurate and exact observations,
carefulness and thoroughness of technique and logical interpretation of
data. He emphasized that practical work is the part of the study of
biology and should go hand in hand with theory.
As Nigeria tries to make a mark in
technical development, the teaching of biology was advocated for, in
recent times by the federal government. This is because of the
realization that biology and technology were the bedrock from which
developed industrialized countries of the world evolved. All other
aspects of human life revolve around science which means, without
biology science all aspects of life will be meaningless. Biology is
quite interesting in advanced countries of the world where practical
work is given the priority and students are able to see for themselves
what is taught in the class.
Attitudes plays an important role
towards the future of science students. Students attitude towards
science affects the science academic performance. Identifying as well as
influencing their attitude is significant in educational research
studies . The study of biology in Nigeria is vital towards the
success of students, it is compulsory subjects for both art and science
students. Biology is offered in private and public secondary schools.
Biology as a discipline tends to study all living things and their
interaction in the biosphere. Biology is also the study of plants and
animals including human beings.
As a science subject, biology help
students to develop their practical skills on experimental work as
observation accurate recording, logical reasoning and effective
manipulation of equipments. Attitude could be positive, negative and
neutral . Attitude are like academic achievement because they are
significant factors in ensuring students success. Students success in
science is aff by their attitude towards science subjects. To enhance
their achievement, it is good to identify the type of attitude they have
towards the subject so as to help them . A study conducted by 
found out that students attitude towards Biology is neutral. Improving
their interest in biology will boost their learning outcome in biology.
In the light of the above, it should be a
general concern of every Nigerian including the researchers to view
this backwardness with some seriousness. There is great need to look
into the issue of teaching and learning of the core science subjects
such as biology.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM.
There are many problems associated with
teaching biology practical in schools, such as lack of good laboratory,
lack of qualified teachers, poor attitude of students towards biology
practical, no excursions or field trips and inadequate instructional
materials. Some students have lost interest in biology practical
partially or totally. Most of these problems exist in most secondary
schools and serve as barriers in the teaching biology practical.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY.
The main objective of the study is the Perception of students and teachers to biology practical in secondary school.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS.
1. What is biology practical?
2. What is perception of students and teachers towards biology practical in secondary school?
3. What can be done to improve the interest of students and teachers in biology practical?
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY.
Biology is one of the subjects which
improves the interaction between human beings and his/ her environment.
Human beings live to appreciate the meaning of scientific life, to
develop unbiased mind and to be intellectual homes which serves as ideal
to the future citizen. Fortunately, it is a fact that biology is the
commonly chosen science subject of most secondary school pupil. This is
confirmed by the West African Examination Council (WAEC). Therefore,
there is need to study the perception of students and teachers towards
biology practical and find the best way to improve it.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY.
This study focus on the perception of students and teachers to biology practical in secondary school.
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3. Usak, M. Prokop, P. Ozel M., Bilen
K.and Erdogan, M. (2009). Turkish University students' attitudes towards
biology; The effects of gender and enrollment in biology classes.
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