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This study investigates the effects of constructivist teaching strategy on senior secondary students’ achievement in waves and optics concepts in physics in Dutsinma metropolis. The study adopts quasi experimental design using pretest – post-test non randomized design. The population of the study was 659 SSII physics students in Dutsinma metropolis. Two co-educational schools were purposively sampled. The sample size used was 147 students. The study was guided by two research questions and two hypotheses. Pretest was administered to the research subjects before the actual experiment. The experimental group was treated using constructivist strategy while the control group was treated using the conventional lecture method. The experiment lasted for four weeks. At the end of the experiment, posttest was administered. Waves and Optics Achievement Test (WAOAT) with a reliability coefficient of 0.76 was used for data Collection. Descriptive statistics of mean and standard deviation was used in answering the research questions while the t-test was used to test the hypotheses. Findings of the study showed that students taught waves and optics using constructivist strategy achieved significantly higher than those taught using conventional method. The findings also show that there was no significant effect of gender on student when taught waves and optics using constructivist strategy i.e. the strategy is gender friendly.

Key words:
constructivist teaching strategy, achievement, waves and optics, gender


Title Page
Table of Contents
List of Tables
List of Appendices

1.1 Background of the study
1.2 Statement of the problem
1.3 Objectives of the Study
1.4 Research Question
1.5 Research Hypotheses
1.6 Significance of the study
1.7 Scope of the study
1.8 Operational definitions of terms

2.0 Introduction
2.1 Concept of Physics
2.3 The Concept of Constructivist Teaching Strategy
2.3.1 Characteristics of Constructivist Teaching
2.3.2 Role of teachers in constructivist classroom
2.3.3 Specifications and Procedures of Constructivist Teaching
2.3.4 Procedures of Conducting Constructivist Teaching
2.3.5 Constructivist assessment
2.4 Researches conducted on constructivist strategy and academic achievement in science
2.5 Researches conducted on constructivist teaching and academic achievement in physics
2.6 Researches on gender and Constructivist teaching strategy
2.7 Summary of the Review

3.1 Introduction
3.2 Research Design
3.3 Population of the study
3.4 Sample and Sampling Technique
3.5 Instrument for data collection
3.6 Validity of Research Instrument
3.6.1 Reliability of Research Instrument
3.7 Procedure for data collection
3.8 Method of Data Analysis

4.1       Introduction
4.2       Data analysis and Results
4.3       Summary of Findings
4.4       Discussion of Findings

5.0       Introduction
5.1       Summary
5.2       Conclusions
5.3       Recommendations of the Study
5.7       Suggestions for Further Studies


1.1 Background of the study
Physics as one of the branches of science is a “sine qua non” for economic and technological development of any nation. Its role to scientists, engineers, chemists and other practitioners of physical and biological sciences cannot be over-emphasized. The discoveries in communication industries, the automobile and transportation industries, the field of health and medicine and many more make use of the concepts of physics. Physics is, therefore, very much required for the aforementioned scientific and technological national development. But unfortunately, it has been noted by some researchers that physics achievement at secondary school level has been low (Kalijah, 2003). This low achievement has been attributed to many factors such as method of teaching. When inappropriate teaching method is employed in teaching, consequently the achievement by the students in that subject area is bound to be low. Also Okoronka (2004), Okoli (2006) and John (2009) in their different studies observed that factors contributing to low achievement in physics and in other science subjects may be linked to the use of instructional strategies which have not totally incorporated learners’ previous knowledge. Some physics educators such as Okoli, John &Adeyomo (2003) have recommended some instructional methods over the years to curb the problem of under-achievement. It is against this background, therefore, that the researcher sought for an appropriate teaching method that will engender students to achieve higher in physics. Thus, this study is undertaken to investigate the effect of constructivist teaching strategy in Dutsin-ma metropolis.
According to Mbajiorgu (2003), the constructivist view tends to encourage learners to interpret and incorporate new information into the already existing schemata. In constructivist classroom,new ideas are constructed based on comparison with current and previous knowledge.

Here, the students interpret things they see and experience by comparing similarities and differences to ideas they already have. In constructivist classroom environment, learners are the central focus. The interaction is among the learners and the teacher’s guide them. As the students share their experiences with the group, they learn from each other. This is in contrast with a traditional classroom where lecture method is used. In constructivist classroom, the students’ active participation is encouraged and this allows the instructor to see many aspects of students’ capabilities such as in the areas of communication and problem solving skills. Some examples of activities that encourage constructivist learning are experimentation, research projects, field trips, class discussions, among others. The constructivist method, which is student-centered, may change the trend of achievement in Physics. (Constructivist teaching method is a method which holds that knowledge is personally constructed and reconstructed by the learners based on their prior knowledge and experience. Akinbobola and Folasade (2009) explain that constructivist learning is based on the cognitive theory of learning, which holds that learning takes place as a result of intuition.This implies that individuals intuitively bring a number of events together to serve a purpose in knowledge construction. Gray (2011) notes that constructivist teaching is based on the belief that learning occurs as learners are actively involved in a process of learning and knowledge construction, rather than passively receiving information. Constructivism therefore is a set of beliefs about knowing and learning that emphasizes the active role of learners in constructing their own knowledge with new experiences.

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