The objective of this research work was to find out the problems and
prospects of teaching English Language in Secondary Schools in Enugu
South Local Government Area of Enugu State. This research work as an
investigation to find data for this study, a total of two hundred (200)
respondents were selected from a population of one thousand people.
After carrying out the research, the research found that the teaching
and learning of English Language in Secondary Schools in Enugu South has
a lot of problems which include:
(a) Lack of qualified English teachers in those schools.
(b) Lack of language laboratories in the schools
(c) Inadequate use of teaching materials and
(d) Lack of conducive environment for learning
(e) Lack of incentive and lack instructional material or teaching resources etc.
These entire problems affect the teaching and learning of English
Language in Secondary Schools sin those schools in Enugu South.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title page i
Approval page ii
Table of contents vi
CHAPTER ONE: Introduction 1
1.1 Background of the study 3
1.2 Statement of the problem 8
1.3 Purpose of the study 10
1.4 Significance of the study 10
1.5 Research Questions 11
1.6 Scope of study 12
1.7 Limitation of study 12
1.8 Definition of terms 13
CHAPTER TWO: Literature Review 15
2.1 Theoretical Review 15
2.2 Problems of teaching English Language 15
2.3 Solution to the problem 20
2.4 General ways of improving the teaching and
learning of the English Language in
Secondary Schools 22
2.5 The Public Concern 23
CHAPTER THREE: Research Methodology
3.1 Research Design 25
3.2 Area of the study 25
3.3 Population of the study 26
3.4 Sample and sampling techniques 26
3.5 Research Instrument 27
3.6 Validation of the instrument 27
3.7 Method of Data Collection 27
3.8 Method of Data Analysis 28
4.1 Research Question One 30
4.2 Research Question Two 30
4.3 Research Question Three 31
4.4 Research Question Four 31
4.5 Discussion of Results 39
CHAPTER FIVE: Discussion of Findings
5.1 Use of instructional resources/media 42
5.2 Conclusions 44
5.3 Recommendation 47
English is one of the major languages out of about 5000 estimated
languages spoken in the world. About 200 years ago, English was simply
the language of less than 15million peoples.
Today, however, English is used by more than 300million people and
second only to Chinese as regards the number of people using a
particular language. Oga R.O (2007), ascertained that English Language
is one of the most influential and fast growing languages spoken across
One fifth of the earth’s land surface use English either as native tongue or official language.
Of the entire World’s Languages English is the most widely studies
language, especially in areas where it is not native. Today, English is
used in several countries in the American continent including the
United States of America and Canada, New Zealand, Republic of South
Africa, Australia, Nigeria and Ghana, including other countries in the
West African, Sub continent. Though English was actually the language
of colonization in these countries like India they have since remained
the official languages in most of the colonized territories.
In other countries including Japan and China according to Udemba S.C
(2007), English Language is usually taught as the chief foreign
Equally, about half of the world’s scientific and technical journals,
as well as newspapers, are printed in English. During the cold war the
former Soviet Union used English in their propaganda broadcasts across
the developing countries in Africa and Asia. The spread of English is
further enhanced through the establishment of British Council and United
States information service by the British and U.S governments
respectively with centers and libraries in various countries including
All these factors have therefore made it easy for anyone who
understands and speaks English, and moves around major cities in the
world to communicate effectively with one another.
According to Anibueze (2007), English Language is a lingua franca. As
a lingua franca, it is the language for unification. It is highly
established so that the people of varied language will have purposes to
relate together maturely and work in union. For example, Hausa man may
comfortably stay and effectively speak with a Yoruba man or an Igbo man,
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The English Language has remained a very important tool for
socialization and bureaucracy activities in Nigeria, since the days of
colonialism. Then, English was taught to their native servants just to
equip them for domestic functions.
It was only natural that emphasis wad laid on spoken English only and
not either on written English or both of them. However, with the
emergence of a new class of people, with time, the civil servants, and
their new roles in the colonial administration, the teaching and
learning of the language took another forms:
Written English become prominent. Edward W.T. (2003) ascertained
that this was very important as Nigeria which is a British began to
interact with other British Colonies and citizens in Africa.
Today English is the language for the international
community, According to Ezugu (1995), the English Language is the most
widely spoken language in the world. It is used as either a primary or
secondary language in many countries. It is the Language of education
administration, law, World trade, International diplomacy as well as
that of pop culture.
It is therefore worth while acquiring mastery of this very important
language for whoever does not, has deprived himself of access to the
world’s brightest of idea and modern technologies.
In Nigeria today English remains the language of pedagogy,
students can hardly make commendable progress in their studies without
adequate mastery of English, through which most of the courses in
primary, secondary and tertiary institutions are taught and examined.
This calls for a system that would be both rudimentary and functional
in its approach. This is important for according to Umaru (2005) as a
student learn a new language, very often he does not know how to express
what he wants to say in writing. Since the student uses a foreign
language as a medium of communication, he has to start from the scratch
to learn the rudiments of the language. It is natural then that this is
the junction where the various problems arising from the teaching and
learning of the language meet the need to do so properly.
Language Teaching, according to Oluikpe (2003) the basic
criteria for assessing students’ proficiency in writing and speak are
generally control of the basic grammatical categories such as
punctuation, tense, number, gender etc.
Language Teaching in Nigeria had fraught with deficiencies. The
major reason for these deficiencies is our English teachers who are not
well-trained only but are also non-professionals. And even if they are
some what trained, their training is not up to work. A situation where a
teacher of language has no mastery of it grammatical categories, as we
see today, does not mean well for the system. Also writing on these
problems facing language teaching, Regneret al (2001) ascertained that
“many good teachers are adoptive rather than rigid in their approach to
teaching children and only loosely base on their instruction on a given
method. Language is the official medium of communication to humans. It
is one of the things that differentiate man from animals. Signs and
symbols have no International understanding and may be difficult to
understand. Picture, painting and sculptures cannot be read by
all. This makes language superior to all of them because it is easily
understood and generally used. According to Ozohili Oby (2007) language
literally means the “tongue” a human organ used in speaking. According
to Ozohili (2007), traditionally, language is defined as a system of
arbitrary vocal symbols by which thoughts are communicated from one
being to another.
Language Learning: Human beings has the ability to learn and
to understand and think about things. He has the capacity to gain and
use knowledge. He can as well explore situations, collect information,
plan and execute the plans. Man’s high intelligence has also enable him
to evolve a level of linguistic communication by which life can be
regulated. Theodore M.C, (2001) stated that language learning requires
thoroughly time, patience and practice. It cannot be done solely in
school with the large class but requires few minutes daily practice for
Therefore, pupils and students should be encouraged to practice this
language in their leisure time inorder to master the language as
Methodology: The methodology here refers to
the method by which the teachers presents his/her materials to the
learners and engages them in the task at hand. Methodology is very vital
in every teaching-learning situation.
For according to Robert .M., (2003) for effective teaching and
learning to take place, the skillful teacher needs to use the many
different methods and techniques at his command.
Even though there is a great diversity in teaching methods and
techniques, there is no one of them that can be regarded as the best for
every teaching situation. This is however assumed that a carefully
designed teaching method can work wonders in making learning more
The Teaching Materials: The teaching
materials involves the dominance of textbooks, dictionaries,
chalkboards, workbooks, (which are rarely used) and posters in the
teaching of English Language in Secondary Schools in Enugu South Local
Government Area of Enugu State has been counter – productive.
Modern media such as audio and video tapes, language laboratories,
programmed texts, flash cards, computers, magazines and newspapers are
not in use. These findings agree with those of kolawole (1998) who
found that the teaching of English Language is bedeviled with many
problems such as inadequate of adequate and useful resources.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The English Language is our cultural window into the world of
heterogeneous culture and traditions. It is a gate of all higher
intellectual pursuit. It is our medium of instruction in schools from
the kindergarten to university level.
Therefore, students at the secondary school levels are expected to
communicate effectively in writing using the English Language.
It is however regrettable that the teaching of this important
tool of both effective education and national/international
socialization at secondary schools in Enugu South Local Government Area
of Enugu State, just like in other secondary schools in Nigeria had been
suffering some defects and neglects alike.
Lack of qualified teacher equipped to groom the students seems to be
the major problems in the schools – Text books are constantly changed
thereby causing disjointed teaching method.
Other instructional materials are also not available. Language
Laboratory to aid the acquisition and master of English Sounds is a
strange story to both the teachers and students in this area.
Above all, mother tongue interference poses a debilitating
danger to the prospect of good English acquisition in those secondary
Since the students first acquired their mother tongue before
learning the English Language this leads to grammatical errors in time
of their performance as these vernacular patterns are different from
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The major aim of this study is to determine the problems
facing the teaching and learning of the English Language in the
Secondary Schools in Enugu South Local Government Area and possible
prospects to that specifically, the study indented to:
(i) Identify and classify these problems
(ii) Determine the magnitude of these problems
(iii) Make recommendation for more language.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
Any academic research embarked upon must be aimed towards
achieving a particular goal which will be significant to the society.
Based on this, the findings of this study will provide us with the
basic information on the nature and causes of these problems, which will
be of a great importance to teach the students in Enugu South
educational zone. Therefore, they will go along way in improving
teachers teaching method and students standard in both writtenand spoken
English, so as to enhance good performance of the students in
examinations. It will help teachers to know the areas in which these
problems occur mostly and frequently and then improve their teaching
The findings of the study will help authors and textbook publishers to know the areas to stress the subject.
1.5 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The following research questions have been formulated to guide the study:
(a) Do Secondary School teachers use instructional resources frequently in teaching the English Language?
(b) Do the English Language teaches use appropriate methods in teaching English Language frequently?
(c) Do Secondary School students in Enugu South Local
Government Area learn English Language in environment conducive to
(d) Do you think that the existing condition can be improved upon?
1.6 THE SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study covered the following: the problems of teachingEnglish
Language, the methods and techniques of teaching English in Secondary
Schools, an examination of problems encountered by teachers in their
1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
In consequence with the topic of this project which is “problems and
prospects of teaching English Language in Secondary Schools in Enugu
South Local Government Area of Enugu State”. The researcher has no
intention to study other Schools outside the given Local Government
Area. Efforts made in the past improving these problems will not
receive attention for treatment here since the existence of the problems
prove them ineffective.
Again, the major focus would be on problems encountered by teachers
in teaching the course. Consequently, students’ experiences would be
treated referentially, while teachers become the main guinea pig.
1.8 DEFINITION OF THE TERMS
The following words and phrases which form the foundation for this
study are hereby explained for the effective comprehension of this
(i) Problems and prospects: Problems, for the purpose of this
study refers to those situations whose presence affects the smooth
teaching of English in Secondary Schools in Enugu South Local Government
Area. Prospects also refers to situations that could facilitate the
(ii) Language Teaching and Learning: With reference to English
Language, this means the whole activities that surround the process of
acquiring English as second language by students in Enugu South Local