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PROBLEMS AND PROSPECTS OF TEACHING ECONOMICS IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS
1.1 BACKGROUND STUDY
Economics is one of the electives or group of subjects expected to be studied at the senior secondary school (SSS) level under the new National policy on Education. The guiding principle of the Economics curriculum is the need to equip graduates of the Senior Secondary School (SSS) with the basic knowledge and skills that will enable them to better appreciate the nature of economic problems in any society. The underlying philosophy of this is to present Economics as a subject that has relevance to everyday life. Thus, an attempt has been made to integrate the theoretical foundations of the subject with their practical applications. This curriculum has been designed as a teaching syllabus with built-in teaching schemes and some suggested strategies to facilitate the teaching and learning process. This approach is expected to ensure the effective handling of the subject in the classroom by inexperienced or untrained teachers while reinforcing the knowledge of teaching methods of the trained teachers.
In economics activities, the individual does job to earn a living and study his many wants or needs which include food, clothing, housing and so on. For example, there are individual farmers, business people and other workers who produce goods and services to satisfy the needs of consumers. The government strives to provide services for the welfare of the citizens in the state. Nations trade among themselves, and many international organizations exist to promote the economic wellbeing of mankind.
In recent times also there have been complains by examiners teachers and even parents about poor student’s performance in economic more especially at the secondary level. There are also cries of students’ lack of interest in social sciences. This study intends to examine whether these trends are due to shaky foundations laid right from the secondary school. In other words are the secondary students given the adequate orientation to develop interest in economics? The emphasis being laid on economics by successive Nigerian governments. Studies such as this could help in revealing the fundamental faults if any, associated with the teaching of economics, and the prospects for improvement.
It is in recognition of the crucial role that secondary school plays in the development of economics that the study intends to look into the challenges and prospects of teaching economics in some selected secondary schools in Awka south local government area.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The study will focus its attention on the challenges being encountered by both students and teachers in the teaching and learning of economics at the secondary school.
Specifically, the study will look into the issue of economics teaching materials to find out whenever or not there are enough materials for the effective teaching of economics in our secondary schools?.
It is stipulated in the new national policy on education that economics teaching should make use of local materials. The study will look into the suitability of local materials for the teaching of economics. The emphasis on the educational system is that curricula should be community oriented.
The study will examine how the student’s local background and immediate environment is employed in the teaching of secondary School Students.
The study will consider the issue of medium of instruction for the teaching of economics in secondary schools. This study is interested in examining if there are any challenges of communication between the teachers and students in the teaching of economics among others. These problems make glaring that there is a need to carry out a study on the Problems and prospects of teaching economics in secondary schools.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The general objective of this study is to examine the Problems and prospects of teaching economics in secondary schools in Awka south Local government area. The specific objectives are:
1. To ascertain the effects of teachers’ qualification on teaching economics in secondary schools in Awka south local government.
2. To find out the impact of lack of instructional material on teaching economics in secondary schools in Awka south local government.
3. To examine the effect of poor infrastructure on teaching economics in secondary schools in Awka south local government.
4. To ascertain if Economics teachers in secondary schools are well paid.
5. To find out the influence of teachers to students relationship on the teaching of economics in secondary schools in Awka south local government.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The relevant research questions related to this study are:
1. What are the effects of teachers’ qualification on teaching economics in secondary schools in Awka south local government?
2. What is the impact of lack of instructional material on teaching economics in secondary schools in Awka south local government?
3. What is the effect of poor infrastructure on teaching economics in secondary schools in Awka south local government?
4. Do Economics teachers in secondary schools are well paid?
5. What is the influence of teachers to students’ relationship on the teaching of economics in secondary schools in Awka south local government?
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
When completed it is hoped that the study will be of importance to educational policy makers and administrators in the ministries of education. It is also hoped that the findings of this study will highlight some issues deserving official consideration in the teaching and learning of economics in secondary schools.
The study will also prove to be of great importance to secondary school teachers of economics as it will expose some challenges connected to the teaching of economics and make suggestions for prospective improvement.
This study will enhance the existing body of literature by contemplating the areas of the literature that have not yet been examined or considered and incorporating these factors into the current study. The study will thus form the basis for further studies in the field.