Economics – Causes And Remedies Of Student’s Poor Performance

Economics – Causes And Remedies Of Student’s Poor Performance: A Case Study Of Afikpo North Local Government Area

Economics – Causes And Remedies Of Student’s Poor Performance: A Case Study Of Afikpo North Local Government Area

In this review of related literature, attempts would be mad to look in what experts have done in related work in the factor that causes students poor performance in economics subject.

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Under these the following sub-healings shall be discuss:

1. Meaning of economics

2. Importance of economics

3. Lack of interest in economics by students

4. Short supply of qualified economics teachers in schools

5. Lack of equipment and instructional aids

6. Motivation and how students perceive economics

7. Students performance in economics

8. Teachers factor and the teaching of economics

9. Economics in the school curriculum

10. summary of review of related literature

Meaning of Economics

Since economics became as separate field of study, it has been variously defined. These various definitions can partly be attributed on the fact that economics is a social science that studies an aspect of human behaviour. However, the various definitions appear to point at the same subject matter.

If one ask a layman in the street what is economics? He may define it or say that economic teaches demand and supply only. An economist to him is a very frugal person. Again, he may say that economics is concerned with all the activities which man engages in for his live hold such as trading, farming and tailoring.

Webster Dictionary defined economics as chiefly with the description and analysis of the production, distribution and consumption of goods and services.

Adam smith (1777) defined economics as the study of wealth that is with regard to treating the nature and causes of wealth on nation.

Mill (1806-1873) defined economics as “the practical science of the production and distribution of wealth” Mill was interested in what produce and share out among the various members of society.

Alfred Marshall (1842-1924) defined economics as “the study of mankind in the every day business of life”

Pigou (1877-1959) defined economics as “the study of welfare”. To him, economics should concern itself with how to increase the material wellbeing of man by increasing total production.

Based on the definition of Adam Smith the earl of Landerdal and Maculah (1927) regarded economics as related to material wealth.

According to Edwin and “Aliva (1937) the term economics is derived from Greek “Oikomomike” denoting the management of the household. (Oikos) inquiring into the nature and results of choice and business firms make. Its focus is on the behaviour of the individuals organizations and institutional in the economy.

The definitions of these economist focused on the word “material wealth thereby narrowing the scope of economics”

But later in 1932, Lord Lionel Robbins formulated one of the best definition of economics, he defined it as; “the science or social science which studies human behaviour as a relationship between ends and scare means which have alternative uses”.

Based on Lord Lionel Robbins’s definition, Mackins and Oruta (2000) defined economics as “the study of how man allocate their limited cum scare resources to provide for their various wants or needs”.

Onwukwe and Agwu (2002) defined economics as ‘a science concerned with those institutions which are involved in the use of scare resources to produce and distribute goods and services in the satisfaction of human wants”. They also defined it as “a discipline deal with how economics units or agents make the must efficient and optimal use of their improved their standard of living”

Despite disagreements over what should be the appropriate definition of economics, economist agree that economics is related to all kind of behaviour that involves the production, exchange distribution and consumption of goods and services.

Production deals with creating utility. By utility is meant that the amount of satisfaction derived from consumption of a commodity at a particular time.

Exchange refers to giving out something in return for another thing. Distribution in the strict economics sense is a branch of economics which deal with what determines the share of National Income received by those who supply factors of production.

Consumption refers to the process of using up resources in order to satisfy human wants.

Finally, economics deal with how individuals businessmen and government make use of the limited resources at their disposal.

Importance of Economics

Economics is a very importance and existing subject because it deals with what we come across in our daily lives.

There are many advantages which someone who has undergone a full course in economics is likely to derive both for himself and society. The knowledge economics is useful for its own sake as a mental exercise, unlike other science. Its conclusions cannot be tested by experiment under laboratory conditions.

Economics helps us to develop well balance logical judgement and a sense of evidence. Haromokeram (1978) commenting on why economics should be studies and he said that; economics help us to build up theories and tools of economics analysis’s which enable us not only to understand current economics problem but also to see the economic consequence of pursuing a particular time of policy. Such tools of economics analysis contained in the above statement is graph, graph consists economist in studying the realistic assumption.

Economics is useful because it helps to train students to think critically and make them effective members of the community. As (1998.p. 15) Anyanwnocha on the importance of economics said that, “Economics helps to develop the power of critical thinking and thereby makes students or individuals unwilling to accept all statements without clarification and thorough scruting”.

Economics is useful because it prepares students and individuals to contribute positively to rapid economic development of the nation. Also enable students and individuals to spend wisely so that the little resources at their disposal can be used to maximize their satisfaction.

According to Onwukwe and Agwu (2000) economics knowledge teaches the household and sector that is; individual consumers how best to use their scare resources. Also enables a consumer to make rational decision with regard to maximizing his total satisfaction.

Economics is useful because it helps the economists to translate their assumptions into graphical form. It also helps to suggest solution to problems and to improve human welfare. One of the economists, professor, Pigou in Jihingan (1975:40) asserted that “the study of economics is not worthwhile for its own sake, but only the feelings the knowledge may help to bring the economics trends”.

The study of economics is very important because it deals with matter concerning us as individual like family matters, political decision business affairs, crucial issues challenging the society and the nation. Lord John Maynard Keyness (a famous economist) once wrote, the ideas of economics are of great value to governments, the National leaders and policy makers use economic ideas extensively on matter concerning unemployment and inflation, economics growth and productivity, taxation and public expenditures, international trade and balance of payment

Although, the study of economics is practical necessity and a moral obligation. This is because economics consideration govern other daily lives. An economist has obligation to warn and advice individuals business and government about the consequences of their actions. For instance, if a worker who earns N7,000 per month has decided to spend all the money on cloth, it is the duty of an economist to warn him on that action by telling the person the implications of his action. The economist always acts in an advisory to people.

Onwukwe and Agwu (2002:15) stated that “Economics knowledge is of practical importance in business because understanding of the overall operation of the economic system puts the business executive in a better position to formulate good policies that would ensure profit maximization for his organization”.

They went further to say that the Executive who understand the causes and consequences of inflation is better equipped during inflationary period to make more intelligent decisions than others.

Mill (one of the famous economist) wrote “Economist are charged with responsibility of gathering and interpreting economic information upon which rational business decisions can be made.

The researcher said that that economics is very importance because economics puts man in a better position to understand economic problems and consequently Proffer solutions to them.

Moreover, economics like any other discipline is a sources of knowledge and as such is useful for its own sake that is for the sake of offering knowledge to mankind.

Effects of Lack of Interest In Economic By Students

Al-Adrin (1984) commenting on the bad impression about economics said that “children loose interest either totally or partially in economic subject due to the bad impression they have about economics” mark pointed out that some of them have notion that economics is a difficult subject and as such will not take up a career involving economics in the future. He went further to say that there were not enough skilled teachers to take up the challenges of mathematical aspects in economics in our schools and therefore appealed to the entire public to note that economics is a good subject that will take use into technology.

Still on the lack of interest in economics many students fail to understand that a characteristic of the basic science like economics is problem solving, mathematics being the most fundamental basic of economics Abbott (1977) derives its reputation as a difficult subject primarily from its dominant problem solving nature. As a subject that deals with economical exactitudes all branches of it deal inevitable with problems whose solutions often envisage to benefit humanity. Newell and Simon (1972:30) and Kild (1982:42) asserted that “a problem may be view as situation in which one does not know immediately the series of action or an anticipated goal” problem solving therefore, would represent whatever action steps a person takes to bridge the anticipated solution and the problem itself.

According to Balogun (1985), interest in economics is influenced by students perception of their aptitude for economics and their liking for economics. He stressed that under the students preference when choosing electives subject in a broad sense, History, Geography, music, Agriculture are more frequently chosen for the fear that economic is a difficult subject.

According to Bajah (1976) in the developing countries, the major determining factor affecting the study of social science subjects especially at secondary schools and university levels are still the learners themselves. Even when the conditions under which the learner of science is inadequate, the performance is till directed to the learner.

The above statement as conformed Bajah, is that even in a situation where there are no shortage supply of teachers and inadequate facilities and teaching aid and instructional materials, the problems of learning economics always attributed to the students. Some students have the phobia as a result of fear of transmitted belief that the subject is difficult hence they loose interest in the learning of economics.

Momodo (1982) asserted the importance of economics to the students. According to him, economics is not just taught to pass the examination, it is also taught for the fact that economics is a subject that is included in order subjects being taught in secondary schools like Geography, mathematics, commerce, Agriculture, History and so on.

In that, he appealed that students should be as much as possible put interest and remove the notion.

Short Supply Of Qualified Economics Teachers

It is common defect in our educational set up that most of the subject concerned. A good sound knowledge of what to teach is the most importance thing for a good and qualified teachers. According to William (1967) a qualified teacher should have good knowledge of the content of the subject area and with effective approaches in his methodology.

It is an indisputable fact that an adequate supply of competent economics teacher is an essential ingredient for good for good economic teaching. Of all the problems affecting the teaching and poor performance in economics in Nigeria, the problem of short supply of qualified teachers in schools have been the most serious. According to Fafunwa (1979:80) he said that, “those who cannot make good else where but because they have the minimum qualification decided to jointed the teaching profession from necessity rather than choice”.

In addition to the above content, Tate (1961) said that, “some economics teachers are unworthy to teach economics, they were employed unmerited and that made them to seen the teaching of economics non-enjoyable and unattractive when teaching it in the classroom and this made both teacher and students to be encountering difficulties in the economic lessons. Tate also said that unqualified teachers may not know those importance items needed in economics studies. In addition, the student they produce suffer handicap on the subject after graduation from secondary school.

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According to Causton (1962) many mentioned that they found their career or studies as economics makers after school, were often handicapped. These students who complain really were not given enough knowledge of economics when they were at school.

Although there are teachers in economic area but the number of the teachers and their qualification seems not to be enough. This therefore has noticeable adverse effect on the teaching and performance of economics in senior secondary school.

According to Aghenta on Guardian Newspaper April (2003:6) says that “the greatest problem confronting the Nigeria Educational system today is that of over shortage of qualified teachers in all levels of the system”.

He also said that insufficient qualified teachers hinder students’ performance in senior secondary certificate examination and also lead to students’ inability to defined economics as a subject outside school period.

In the words of Bossan (1983) in almost all of the states on the federation, there is shortage of economics teachers especially in the secondary schools. To him, this problem of teachers poses a great problem in the students performance in secondary schools because some of the economics topics are not taught at all to students due to lack of teachers. In other words, one may find out that a single teacher is handling many students.

According to Nnawa (1968) the personality of teachers have significant influence on student’s performance. He argued that the efficiency of any teacher in any level of education depends much on his educational background and his professional training ability.

Kafuwa (1979) implies that the least qualified teacher expected to teach in our secondary school should possess at least NCE certificate. This is because the man with this certificate is believed to have got enough exposition to enable him cope with the academic problems in our secondary schools.

According to a one time Ebonyi State Commissioner of Education Dr. Sam O. Egwu, he said that “with the presence of abundant equipment, material and money without the qualified teachers available on the right place, curriculum cannot be realized and student’s performance will be hindered.

In all addition, the researcher agree with the view of Dr. Sam O. Egwu because teachers should have a core training in all aspect involved in the areas of their specialization. An economics teacher should be able to teach competently all the topics (including the mathematical aspect) of the subject area.

According to Nduanya (1986) stated that teachers should endeavour to make the teaching method more productive be encouraging problems and skills. Again, a qualified economics teacher could be possibly equipped with improved method of teaching and thus will motivate students interest in economics.

Unqualified teachers have poor teaching and students relationship and also do not care about the psychological feeling of the students. This lead to student imbalance in their subject.

According to Farrant (1980:22) on his report on standard of education in Nigeria wrote;

No one can do a job well unless he understands all the process involve. Educational significant of subject are likely to reach it with greater success than those who teach it because it appear on the syllabus and time table.

The above assertion is important because the efforts of a teacher who understand all the process involved in his subject and seen in the excellent performance of this pupils, that teacher learn more to acquired a mere teacher job.

Adesma (1985), commenting on the need for the teacher to be on expert on the psychology and development on children stated that “teacher should also study well because every child in his classroom is unique both behavioural and learning abilities habits and skills as well as the environment and hereditary assets and liabilities.

The above comment denoted that a trained teacher in economics is expected to be aware of this vital principle that suggest or contribute to student performance in economics.

Evidence though observation during the teaching practice exercise showed that most teacher that teach economics have neglected some important theories in the subject because they are not qualified to teach economics. It is also observed that most of them lack information and ability to teach the subject and this make students to perform poorly in the subject.

Consequently, the researcher agree that the teaching of economics in secondary schools today is rapidly changing character because students are prove to receive insufficient, wrong and outdated information from their unqualified teacher which eventually lead them to poor performance to the subject.

Moreover, teachers lack of devotion to duty, ability to maintain and human relations with students and co-workers contributed students poor performance in economics.

Lack Of Equipments And Instructional Material

This review of related literature shows that the performances of students in economics in secondary schools in Afikpo North L.G.A can be attributed to the effect of lack of equipment and instructional materials.

The causes of poor performance of students have been a matter of poorly equipment like:

1. Lack of textbooks: Textbooks is an inevitable and valuable educational resource material used by all the teachers and students at all levels of educational system. Insufficient of textbook hinder effective teaching and learning for both teachers and students.

2. libraries: Libraries is a department that is, very vital to the progress of any educational system

3. Teaching aids (audio-visual project) lack of teaching aids hinder effective teaching and learning in secondary schools in Afikpo North L.G. A. The effective use of teaching aids stimulate the students interest, encourage their involvement by raising questions, make clear the purpose and objective of subject. This means that the students will be an active listener rather passive listener.

4. Inadequate Accommodation (classes) Here we are concerned with few number of goods and specious classroom with a nice arrangement and enough ventilation for the students.

According to Charlotte (1979) ‘when the class is too small to accommodate students, some of them will not pay attention” the students will get tried and this will grave room to noise and moving from one seat to another.

Bosan (1983) “Almost all the schools, stores or libraries have scarcely teaching equipment and instructional aids like pictures, large photographs, friezes, maps, posters, episcopes, time chart, nor books, flannel, broadcast, television”.

According to Anene and Brown (1960) said that “the greatest challenges of African economic study, performance and teaching are caused by lack of adequate and to learning”

Based on the comment, scholars like Mays Permels (1970) highlighted the importance of instructional materials and teaching aids “visual aids which meant pictures, slides, film, television have in the first place enormous contribution to make in the realm of accurate factual knowledge”. This, in no doubt bring teaching to rake economic values.

Nwosu (1980) also pointed out that the problem of teaching aids in teaching economics is another factor that is effecting economics instruction, that is, the unavailability of instructional material”.

Balogun (1982:35) asserted that, “no effective social science education programme could exist without the necessary equipment for social science teaching”. These he said were indispensable to good social science teaching and learning. According to him part of the objective fore teaching social science subject in the secondary school curriculum was to communicate the spirit of social science to the students. This could not be achieved without social science equipment, adding that the basic source of human social science experiences was the direct relationship with man and how man react to certain conditions with regards to cost of goods and the general behaviour of man in regards to his daily activities. This can be tested in our daily life behaviour. This means that the students need the equipment to begin to practical skills to solve practical problems.

Ofiu (1976) maintained that no useful work could be planned or carried out without adequate and sufficient facilities, equipment and working syllabus. He stated that the skills, which could be developed might be broadly summarized as observational skill from critical thinking and generation. He maintained that for students to achieve these, they might be taught by suitable techniques or methods.

According to Odetolao (1977), who received the general academic performance of students in secondary schools, based on West Africa Examination Council (WACE) said that performance of students in economics is determined by the problems associated with the teaching method of subject and insufficient instructional materials.

According to Agusiobo (1982) most schools are not being provided with learning material such as textbooks, chalk, blackboard and so on, many schools lack equipped libraries. Some available textbook in those libraries either contain insufficient information or old information in the sense that the system of education in our country today as it is contained in National Policy on Education (NPE) is being structured after the dynamic nature of the society which is pointing towards science and technology.

My personal experience during the teaching practices exercise shows that most economics teachers do not even care to select a teaching aid for teaching economics, even though it is teaching aids that foster understanding in teaching and learning. However, the issue of writing note of lesson is also neglected.

Opon (1981) said that experiment on what has been observed in order to find a scientific explanation for it, was different on economists from a non economist while all scholar’s pursued knowledge with logic, economist supported their logic, arguments with empirical facts obtained from experimentation.

Moreover, over dependence upon textbooks from foreign country also have some effects on students’ poor performance in economics.

In support of the researcher’s content Yager (1981) while emphasizing the over dependence on the textbooks by teachers and their students said that it was prevented even in United States of America. The problem is however, compounded in the Nigerian situation due to the fact the only recommended textbooks is theoretical with little or no relationship to experimental learning.

Fafunwa (1976) said that one of the set back in the learning of economics in many secondary schools is lack of economics equipment. He suggested that better economics aids or materials should be provided to ensure adequate and purposeful learning. In addition Balogun (1972) suggested that for effective teaching and learning economics in secondary level, instructional equipments must be performance.

Adeyemo (1977) visual aids help to disseminate information in such a way to modify the learners’ behaviour and interest in economics subject therefore suggested to be used properly in teaching economics.

Irving Greene (1976) pointed that irrespective of the method of teaching a teacher adopted whether it is the project, lecture, discussion or discovery and so on, there is need of using teaching aids. The essence of teaching aid to him is to bring the teachers and students into contact with the subject matter.

Lack of Motivation

The behaviour of students towards economics for sometime now have not been encouraging. This is because of lack of motivation for students by teachers.

The term motivation originated from the Latin word “movers” meaning “to move”. Moreover, it can be define as the process of arousing movement in organism or human being.

Hennery and William (1981) human motivation refers to the process by which behaviour is mobilized and sustained in the interest of meeting individual needs in achieving organizational objectives.

Musaazi (1982) sees motivation as the inner derive which prompts people to act in a certain way.

Nduanya 1986:126) noted that, the teacher believed that students coming into their class have their own motives and therefore regarded motivation as a self generated phenomenon entirely by students. It is dangerous for the teacher to take this stand about motivation. If it is accepted then the teacher will find it difficult to manipulate the environment and its resources. Therefore, teacher should realize that students will learn more and more and become more efficient if they are helped to create a satisfaction to learn what is being imparted to them.

The researcher suggest that the teachers can promote the design to learn in the students as indicated in above assertion through various motivation strategies such as convincing the students of the value of mastering the subject matter of learning to achieve their set objectives, providing reinforcement to students whenever they perform well, this will give them a feeling of competence, use set induction, responding positively to children or students questions, provision of feed back in the class like outcome of their performance in a given task, use of models and so on.

Some scholars like Adesina and Okereke (1983) suggested that the teachers should motivate the students to learn more through a skillful questioning. A good introduction at the beginning of lesson should help to arouse students interest into the lesson. In the middle of the lesson, skillful question will help to emphasis important concepts already explained and also to maintain students attention. At the end of the lesson, teacher should advise relevant question to revise and summarize all the important ideas in the lesson. A situation where teacher fails to motivate the students there is likely to be a poor performance in the subject.

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Adesina (1985:55) further said that poor motivation of students in a subject, made students not to have a clear understanding of what is being learned or taught. It will make the students to forget what is being learnt easily because the lesson was meaningless to them in other words, the students will lack the ability to use their senses adequately so as to interpret the teacher’s message and accomplish the desired tasks correctly.

According to him, lack of motivation of students by teacher lead to students poor performance in the subject.

In addition to this, Butter and Wren (1960) stated that poor motivation hinder students performance in a subject. They also said that a well prepared teacher can use an inadequately structure curriculum to build on instructional programmes of significant merit on student behaviour in the class.

In this contribution, Ukeje (1966) stressed on the need for economics education that “economics education lead to education for personal economic efficiency”. He pointed out that lack of motivation will influence student performance in the subject.

Thus, students see economic as a science of scarcity, science of how individuals and societies deal with the fact that wants are greater than the limited resources available to satisfy those wants. In this, Mazzi (1985) said that motivation help students to come with how they feel or perceive economics. The poor motivation of students lead to negative thought of a subject and poor performance.

Omebe (2001:85) stated the functions of motivation as, motivation leads to good performance, high productivity of national growth, development and welfare of students and nation, it determines how students and individuals decide on the level of effort on task, it concerned with how behaviour gets started and what kind of subjective reaction in present while all these are going on, it is useful where it is applied to staff (techers0 to discover what prompt people (students) to behave in certain way.

According to him, the characteristics of a motivate students in the classroom as:

A motivated student would face his class work with zeal and interest, when he is given assignment in the school he puts every effort to ensure that he gets the assignment correctly, He studies very hard so as to attain his set goal.

Consequent to above content, Ferrings (1982) “motivation is very important for the achievement of educational objective since motivation energizes the behaviour of the students and arouses tem for action. He also said that teachers lack of motivation contribute to students inability to perform well in their subject.

According to Ball (1977) lack of motivation make subject matter meaningless, un-enjoyable and unattractive to students.

The researcher agree with what other experts have said, that motivation is very important in teaching and learning economics and lack of it causes students poor performance in the subject.

Student’s Performance In Economics

Student’s performance in economics in Nigeria especially in Afikpo North L.G.A in Ebonyi State is not encouraging. There is a noticeable decline in students’ performance in economics in Senior Secondary Certificate Examination (SSCE) in the Local Government.

According to Dr. Sam O. Egwu, the former commissioner of education Ebonyi State said that student performance in SSCE in the state is very poor. On this, Onwuka (1989) asserted students’ performance is Senior Secondary Certificate Examination (SSCE) is worse in the field of social science subject especially in economic subject.

Based on personal observation, students poor performance in economics are causes by students lack of interest in the subject, non qualified teacher, and lack of motivation. Ukeji (1985) pointed out that students poor performance in economics subject attributes to their bad study habit like lack of researcher work and improper use of appropriate textbooks. Kalu (1980) said that students perform very poor in economics because of their lack of interest the subject and lack of concentration in learning of economics. On his own contribution, Mazzi (1989) stated some problem that causes students poor performance as, “short supply of qualified economics teachers, poor teaching method sufficient use of instructional material in teaching economics and attitude of students toward the teacher, and administrators in teaching and learning”.

Student decline in performance in economics constitute a burden in the progress in the advancement of those basic benefit, which should accrue or gain from economics subject. According to Onwukwe (Head of Department of Economics Ebonyi State University) in the interview on academic performance in our country stated that students performance especially in economics subject is very poor. He state that students do not have interest in the study of economics and that is actually contributing to some of the problems in schools today.

According to Chief examiners report on SSCE May/June (1999:89) shown that students performance in SSCE is poor. In the report sheet the Chief Examiner pointed out some problems that causes students poor performance in examination as; improper use of academic syllabus, inability of students to understand questions, cheating in examination, misconduct of examination by the invigilators, lack of concentration, reasoning and thinking, and answering question more than required.

In 2000, the Chief Examiner also stated that students performed poorly in the subject because of “disobedient of the rubies poor coverage of the syllabus, inability to draw and label diagrams properly, inability to explain, identified points, outright misinterpretation of some questions.

According to 2003 report, he stated that students perform woefully because of poor grammatical expressions, poor articulation of points, inability to explain and presents points logically, poor map drawing and location of feature on the maps, use of poor quality materials and tools in visual Art, inaccurate measurement of diagram outlines, violation of rubrics, inability to interpret conventional syllabus.

The Chief Examiner also said that some students do not make use of recommended textbooks therefore advise teachers and students to improve in their teaching and learning of the subjects.

In Afikpo North Local Government Area in Ebonyi State, students performance in economics is very bad and not impressing. From the research material obtained from educational authority in Afikpo North L.G.A, the following results were obtain on the students’ performance in Economics in WAEC.

Year of examination Percentage number of student that passed Percentage number of student that fail Total number of students

May/June 1999 45% 55% 2300

May/June 2000 36% 64% 2450

May/June 2002 37% 63% 1987

May/June 2003 34% 66% 2010

From the result obtained on the student’s performance in economics in Afikpo LGA from 1999 to 2003 SSCE, the researcher agreed that there is poor performance among economics students in SSCE.

Teacher’s Factor And The Teaching Of Economics

Economics is a subject taught is both theoretical and mathematical level in senior classes with the use of syllabuses. It is usually introduced in SS1 and also required thinking and reasoning. According to Okafor (1984:7) “teaching of economics required specific skills just as the teaching of other subjects.

In teaching of economics, it is the responsibility of a teacher to select and plan for the contents of the course he s to teach.

Castle (1990) class-voom learning environment depends entirely on leadership of the teacher. He stated that, it is the responsibility of teacher to determine. The materials to be used in the class, how to teach his subject, what reaction expected of the students in the class, classroom management discipline and class evaluation.

Based on the above statement, the researcher agreed that teacher factor contribute to students performance in learning. The positive attitude of teacher towards the subject he is teaching enhance good learning and performance while negative behaviour discourage students in a subject. In support of this Onwusanya (2000) stated that it is the way teacher behaves rather than what he does that is most important Nwuzor (20030 pointed out that teacher’s honesty, his ability to encourage personal learning, his willingness to participate in activities agreed upon and his kindness towards the subject he is handling determines the level of students performance in a subject or course.

Agusiobo (1982) teachers factor in teaching is to address students and make sitting arrangement in the class during his lesson. Ogalanya (2004) motivation strategies, good teaching method, available instructional material and encouragement. Bloom said it is to give much positive reinforcement and encouragement to students. The researcher teachers factor in teaching are to stimulate learning as well as guiding, correcting the activities of students.

Teaching and learning of economics is not something that one would acquire once in time, it requires gradually and step process for one to understand it.

Mackson and Oruta (2000) economics is one of the subject that requires thinking and reasoning, in that it takes long time for one to understand it especially in the calculation. According to Jowitt (1981) teaching of economics requires, “motivation and strategies, use of instructional aids, logical thinking, concentration and good teaching method”.

In most schools under the researcher’s review teachers factor and teaching of economics is not impressing. In Afikpo North L.G.A, exemplary in their private life style. They believe that students have nothing to do with their behaviour. According to Olaitan (1982) stated that some teachers believed that students have no business aping teachers private habits.

According to Egwu-Enih, on the interview on teacher attitude towards their teaching, commented that some economics teacher use punishment and all forms of harsh tactics, humiliations to scare discourage students in learning of economics.

Based on research and personal observation, some economics teachers do not performance their duty. Ndemoleku (1981) some economics teachers though that their duty is to teach only. According the Heart of Good not the main problem on students poor performance in a student, because ignorance exists like a hole in the desert into which the teacher is to power learning.

Gulletee further stated that learning of economic could be transparently improved and standardized if teachers could become more involved in their job instead of seeing it as mere talk shows, travels, excursions and so on.

Francis in the Afikpo Today magazine on Vol. 3 No. 3, January to June, (2006) stated that “the method in which some economics teachers adopted in teaching economics in our schools today partly accounts for the poor performance of students in the subject”.

Based on the above content, the researcher infers that the method of teaching in any subject is one of the determinants of effective learning and performance. I n support of this Peter (1985) stated that it is the way teacher presents his subject topic to the learners that determine to great extent of the students achievement

Success in teaching depends upon the relationship between the teacher and his students. A good measure of success in measured when teacher establishes rapport with his students.

Okeke (1981) stated that, a good relationship between students and teachers enhance effective teaching process and good performance. The researcher agreed with Okeke because if students are not giving a maximum relationship from their teacher, their performance will be very poor.

Farrant (1980) pointed our that, teachers should involve students in the whole process teachings as that will help them accelerate their learning.

According to Enegie (1985), he commented that teachers should be vast in their methodology of teaching as to enhance learning and good performance.

On the research’s observation, transmission of knowledge depends on the attitude of the teachers. Fafunwa (1986) state that no significant change in education can take place in any country unless its teaching staff are well trained.

The researcher believe that teachers factor and teaching of economics may contribute positively or negatively on students performance in economics.

Economics In The Schools Curriculum

Based on the definition of a curriculum, it lack consensus among educator. This is because many educator defined a curriculum to suit the social needs prevalent at the time.

According to Aguokogbuo (2000) pointed out that that word curriculum is derived from a race course (running course) or race trace for chariots.

Neogley and Evan (1980) define curriculum as all the planned experience provided by the schools to assist learners in attaining the designated learning outcomes to the best of their abilities.

Mkpa (1985) on his own view defines curriculum as all learning of students which is planning by and directed by the school to attain its educational goals.

On the research view, I defined curriculum as the body of subjects programmed and structured by teachers which students are expected to cover.

Economics in the school curriculum is the path way in which schools have to carry their economics subjects activities in order to achieve educational goals of the economics as it was stated in the syllabus. Taba (1988) school curriculum is made up of all the experiences both curriculum and extra curriculum. Ronald (1980) stated that economics in school curriculum outline how economics and other activities should be handle. Johnson (1989) pointed out that in school curriculum economics subject is stated at the time in which it will be introduced to students.

In WAEC and NECO syllabus economics is usually introduced in the fourth years in senior secondary school (SS1 class). WAEC syllabus (2003/04 pg. 170) economic was introduced with the aims at testing candidates knowledge of basic economic principles, concepts and tools for economics analysis, knowledge of structure functioning of economics institutions, commercial, industrial and financial, understanding of the basic for rational economics decisions, structure of the West African economy, ability to give description of major economics activities, production, distribution and consumption and ability on the problems which West African countries encounter in their economics development.

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In educational curriculum (2981:22) economics was designed to inculcate the following values:

Respect for the worth and dignity of individual; faith in man’s ability to make rational decisions, morale and spiritual values in interpersonal and human relation, shared responsibility for the common good of society, respect for dignity of labour, and promotion of the emotional, physical and psychological health of all children.

The report of the Chief examiner on students’ performance stated that, “economics subject is well structured in academic curriculum in a way that students will be able to cover or know topics on economics before entering senior secondary examination”. He also advises that schools to carry out its teaching according to the National Academic Curriculum to improve students performance in West African Examination Council (WACO).

Moreover, the researcher agreed that economics is properly organized in national academic curriculum and also one of the popular course in schools.

The Summary of Review of Related Literature

This chapter has presented a pungent and trenchant analyse the causes and remedies of students, poor performance in economics and draw lessons that would be useful to the interested read who love reading.

This was done in order to identify the key determinants of students poor performance in the past and improve on the performance in the future. It was found that one of the ————– determinants of students poor performance in economics was the lack of interest in economics by students, lack of equipment and instructional aids, short supply of qualified economics teacher in schools, lack of motivation and how students perceive economics and so on.

From the various view and reference cited in this chapter, it has become obvious that these problems review above exist and affect the performance of students in economics subject in Afikpo North L.G.A in Ebonyi State.

Economics is a science or social science which studies human behaviour as a relationship between ends and scare means which have alternative uses.

Economics is a social science that studies an aspect of human behaviour as pointed out by Robbins (1932).

Economics is a very important and exciting subject. It helps students to develop well balance logical judgement and sense of evidence.

It helps students to think critically and become effective member of the society. It deals with what we come across in our daily lives. Therefore it should be taught well in secondary schools. Teachers in economics should be qualified in subject concerned because the personality of teacher has significant influence in student performance. Short supply of qualified economics teachers causes students poor performance in Afikpo North Local Government Area. Therefore adequate supply of qualified economics teacher should make available.

A supply of competent economics teachers is an essential ingredient for good economics teaching. Unqualified economics teachers made teaching of economics unattractive and non-enjoyable to students thereby causes poor performance in economics subject. Students negative interest in economics should been stop effort and interest in learning economics so that they should accrue those basic benefits from economics students should see economics as an easy subject so that they would not find the subject difficult.

Instructional materials and teaching equipments hinder students performance in economics. Therefore teachers should make use of appropriate teaching aids in teaching economics. They should also teach students in a well conducive environment for effective learning and performance. With teaching equipment students begin to develop the necessary skills in reasoning, attitudinal and practical skills to solve practical problems. Moreover, teachers should make them available while teaching economics to students.

Teachers and students should learn how to motivate themselves. Teachers should motivate their students since motivation refers to the process by which behaviour is mobilized and sustained in the interest of meeting individual needs in achieving organizational objective. Teachers should use various motivation strategies like reinforcement, feed back and so on, various teaching methodology in teaching economics for effective performance. A motivated students can not forget what is being taught in the classroom because it was meaningful and clear to him. Therefore, student needs to be motivated in classroom.

Moreover teacher and students should show positive interest in the teaching and learning of economics to enhance effective performance in the subject.



This chapter deals with discussion, conclusion, educational implication, recommendations limitations to the study, summary of the study and suggestion for further studies.

Discussion of the Findings

From the data collected and analysed the respondents agreed that most students do not have interest in studying economics. Most students do not listen, concentrate in the classroom some of the students stay away from economics lesson and some have the feelings or impression that economics is too difficult, it contribute to their poor performance in the subject.

According to Adrin (1984) on his own view, comment on bad impression about economics that children loose interest either totally or partially in economics subject due to the bad impression they have about economics that some of them have the notion that economics is a difficult subjects therefore fail to listen and concentrate during the lesson thereby lead them to poor performance in the subject.

The respondents agreed that lack of instructional material causes students poor performance in economics. Despite the benefits or advantages derive from using instructional equipments or aids, the respondents agreed that their schools do not have it and their teachers do not make use of it in teaching and learning of economics and this leads to their poor performance in the subject. Fufunwa (1976) stated that “one of the setback in learning of economics in many secondary schools is lack of economics equipment or material aids”.

The respondents agreed that lack of motivation hinder concept already explained and cause students poor performance in economics. Despite the importance of motivation which lead to good performance, high productivity of national growth, development and welfare of students and nation as it was stated by Omebe (2001) economics teachers failed to use different motivation strategies in teaching economics and that causes students to perform very poor in the subject. This agree with the work of Adesina (1985) who stated that lack of motivation of students in a subject made students not to have a clear understanding of what is being learned or taught, make them to forget what is being learnt easily because the lesson was meaningless to them and therefore causes adequately so as to interpret the teachers message and accomplish the desired tasks correctly in the subject.

Finally, it was found out that short supply of qualified economics teachers affect students performance despite the facts that a reasonable number of available teacher in Afikpo North L.G.A are qualified, students perform poorly in economics subject because of short supply of economics teachers to the schools. It was also observed that no significant change in students performance in economics subject can take place in Afikpo North L.G.A unless enough qualified economics teachers are given to schools. According to what Agheta said on Guardian Newspaper, April (2003:6) that “the greatest problem confronting the Nigerian Educational system today is that of over shortage supply of qualified teachers in all levels of the system.” That insufficient qualified teachers hinder students performance in economics subject. This also supports Bossan (1983) words, which said that “in almost all of the states in the federation, that there is shortage of economics teachers especially in the secondary schools and that poses a great problem in the secondary school and that performance.


After the comparatively analyzing the data on the last chapter and based on the finings of the research, the following conclusion were made:

1. Students lack of interest in economics affect their performances in the subject. Some students have the fear that economics is a difficult subject and loose interest in the learning of economics.

2. Lack of interest in economics by students reduce the number of students that studying fill in the economics subject in their formulation examination, that is NCEO and WAEC.

3. Lack of motivation made students not to taught clear understanding of what is being they are taught easily.

4. Short supply of qualified economics teachers in the area under review has serious implication to both teaching and learning processes in Afikpo North L.G.A. In the sense that a teacher teaches more than one class and that caused the teacher not to cover up the scheme of work and students will not learn what they are suppose learn before entering into SSCE examination. Therefore, for research lovers, it will provoke them to further carry out research in this and make bodies concerned with educational planning on how to improve the academic achievement of secondary school students.


The following remedies are made based on the conclusions.

1. Students should remove the negative fear that economics is too difficult but show positive interest in the study of economics to enhance effective performance in the teaching and learning of the students.

2. Schools should provide adequate instructional materials or aids to teachers. Teachers should make them available and use the appropriate teaching aids in teaching economics so that student would see what the teacher is teaching physically in the classroom.

3. Teacher should learn how to motivate their students in the class and also make use of various motivation strategies and good teaching methodology in teaching economics for effective performance.

4. Ministry of Education should supply enough competent economics teachers to schools in Afikpo North Local Government Area and put qualification into consideration when employing teacher. Only teachers with necessary academic and professional qualifications in economics should be employed to teach economics subject to ensure good performance.


This research work is designed to study the causes and remedies of student’s poor performance in economics in Afikpo North Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.

The purpose of the study are to identify the various causes of student’s poor performance in economics and to suggest possible measure that could be adopted in curbing the causes. In reviewing the topic the researcher raised four research questions, which aided him

Chapter one of the research work dealt with the background to the study, purpose for choosing the topic, problem that motivated the researcher to carry out the research, what the researcher hope to achieve after the study and questionnaire.

Chapter two deals with the review of literature, that is the view of other scholars on the same or related topics.

Chapter three deals with methodology which includes the design of the study, area, population, sample and sampling techniques, instrument for data collection, validation, administration, method of data analysis and decision rule. Due to multiple natures of secondary schools in the area under review, the researcher used random sampling in selecting the ten schools used for research.

Chapter four deals with data presentation and analysis. The researcher presented all the data from questionnaires and interviews. The questions and answers were presented and analysed as it was structured in the questionnaire.

Chapter five deals with researcher’s findings, conclusions, educational implication of the findings, remedies and summary.


The limitations during the execution of this study were:

1. The time needed to complete this study was short when compared with the content geographical converge of the study.

2. Finance constraint shortage of fund to produce more copies of questionnaires made the researcher to produce only 230 copies and also shortage of fund caused the researcher to use smaller sampled population.

3. The respondents were not free with the research as many though that the researcher want to invade their privacy especially when they were asked to identify their particulars.

4. The researcher covered only the secondary level of education, leaving other levels due to time constraints.

Suggestion for Further Studies

The following suggestions have been made for poor performance of students in economics is not only common in Afikpo North Local Government Area. It is even a national problem on the basis of the above, the researcher suggests that similar studies should be extended to a larger geographical area.

Economics – Causes And Remedies Of Student’s Poor Performance: A Case Study Of Afikpo North Local Government Area


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  1. pls I need the reference of this research work

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