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Title Page
Table of Contents

Chapter One
1.1       Background to the Study
1.2       Statement of the Problem
1.3       Objectives of the Study
1.4       Research Questions
1.5       Research Hypotheses
1.6       Significance of the Study
1.7       Basic Assumptions
1.8       Scope and Delimitation

Chapter Two
Review of Related Literature and Theoretical Framework
2.1 Introduction
2.2 Concepts of Punctuation Marks in Essay Writing
2.3 Previous Studies on Punctuation Marks and Essay Writing
2.4 The Theoretical Framework

Chapter Three
Research Methodology
3.1 Introduction
3.2 Research Design
3.3 Population for the Study
3.4Sample Size and Sampling Procedure
3.5 Instrument for Data Collection
3.6 Validity and Reliability of the Instrument
3.7       Pilot Test
3.8       Procedure for Data Analysis

Chapter Four
Data Presentation and Analysis of Findings
4.1  Introduction
4.2 The variables
4.3 Presentation and Analysis of Data
4          .4 Research Question Testing
4.5 Hypothesis Testing
4.6 Summary of the Major Findings
4.7 Discussion of Findings

Chapter Five
Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations
5.1 Introduction
5.2Summary of the Work
5.3 Conclusion
5.4 Recommendations
5.5 Recommendations of the areas for Further Study


Writing is a very important aspect of English language development. The importance of this skill makes it a determining factor in the academic and the social life of the students. The incessant complaints of teachers and other stakeholders of the inability of the students to express themselves in writing nowadays was the impetus that propelled this research work This research was an attempt to explore the impacts of the effect of the use of punctuation marks on the written performance of SS2 students in Kano State. The schools selected were Rumfa college and Government Senior Secondary School Gwammaja The population was one thousand (1000)while the sample was one hundred (100). The instruments were teacher constructed objective test and an un-punctuated passage to be punctuated. The variables tested were the fulstop, comma, colon and semi-colon. The choice of these variables was based on the belief that it was hardly if not impossible for one to write appropriately in English or understand the same without properly applying these punctuation marks. The subjects of this research study were randomly selected The data for the research were mainly collected from the tests given to the students.T-test and ANOVAs were used to analyze the data collected in testing of the four hypotheses formulated.. The hypotheses were formulated to investigate the effect of the said variables on the essay performance of the subjects. The finding indicated that there was significant effect of the variables on essay performance of the subjects, as T calculated was greater than T critical. Practice based approach be used, effective teaching strategies be applied to remedy the problems NECO and WAEC be setting questions on punctuation marks and stakeholders be accessing new findings via university authorities.



1.1              Background to the Study

Lack of proper use and application of punctuation marks would be equated to a new car without an effective brake system. That is, the knowledge of the other elements of the language, without the ability to skilfully use the punctuation marks will not enable an individual to write meaningfully and effectively in the language. Certain problems of ambiguity cannot be solved in English but only through the use of punctuation marks.

Linguists such as (Adekunle) have agreed it is hard, if not impossible, for one to write an essay appropriately in English or understand the same without properly applying these punctuation marks. It is unanimously agreed, by linguistics across the world that structure in English is complex because it is composed of many interrelated and interdependent ideas that need to be marked before they would be understood by readers. As such, the need is reinforced for the use and application of punctuation marks, in the process of writing and reading such structures.

Murthy(2007) believes that” punctuation plays an important role in developing writing skills” .Here, it is clear that the use of punctuation marks is necessary in writing an essay meaningfully and getting what is written understood. It could also be understood from the above that ,not even at the secondary school level, but at whatever level one must use punctuation marks in order to write meaningfully and in order to put the text through.....

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