Facts and factors influencing performance of science subjects in Kenya schools case study of physics performance in Mirira Secondary School, In Muranga District

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Kampala International University, College of Education, Open and Distance Learning
This research is a case study designed to investigate the factors affecting student's performance in physics at Mirira secondary School in Kiharu Division, Murang'a District, in Central Province. The principle objective of this study was to look at the factors that influence student's poor performance in Mirira Secondary School. The results of this research will therefore fill the knowledge gaps on factors influencing achievement in physics which can also be a guide towards the other science subjects. The targeted population was made up of 356 students, teachers and the supporting staff. The sample used was made up of 50 students three physics teachers and the school principal. Three questionnaires were designed, one for the students, one for the physics teachers and the other one for the principal. The questionnaires seeked information on student's attitude towards physics, availability of laboratory equipments, textbook ratio, teachers' workload, and methods of evaluation. A descriptive analysis was used to analyse the data from the three groups of the respondents. Research findings indicates that students in Mirira Secondary School have a negative attitudes towards physics, the school laboratory is not adequately equipped, physics textbooks ratio is inadequate, physics teachers are overburdened through loading, and the school lack a well monitored policy of evaluation. All these could have a bearing in determining the poor performance of physics in the school. Career guidance, practical oriented teaching methods, fieldtrips, science clubs, giving students easy tasks and good preparation of physics teachers can be used to change the negative attitudes of the students towards physics. To provide adequate laboratory facilities more funds need to be allocated in school budgets, organize fund raising, borrowing essential equipments from the neighbouring schools and improvisation can ease the problem oflaboratory equipments. School library, school priorities, and fund raising or donations can solve the problem of textbook ratios. Teachers service commission or intervention of Board of Governors can solve the problem of teachers' load. Finally the school should develop a well monitored evaluation policy under an internally appointed dean of studies.
A Research report submitted to the institute of open and distance learning in partial fulfillment of the award of Diploma of education of Kampala International University.
Performance, Science subjects, Kenya