The study investigated the effect of availability and utilization of instructional resources on student’s performance in science in senior secondary schools in Sokoto State. A descriptive survey research design was used. Forty seven (47) science teachers in seven (7) sampled schools were selected across six (6) Educational Zones in the state. A total of three hundred and thirteen (313) senior secondary school two (SSII) students were selected as sample out of one thousand six hundred and twenty eight (1628) students’. Three (3) instruments were used in collecting data which included Laboratory Facilities/Equipment Inventory for Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Assessment Observation Form on Utilization of Instructional Resources and Student’s Science Performance Test. The instruments were found reliable and valid for collecting data. Five (5) research questions were developed, of which research questions 1 and 2 were answered using frequency count and simple percentage. The findings revealed that there are adequate instructional resources in senior secondary schools but the resources are inadequately utilized by the science teachers. T-test statistical tool was used for the analysis of three (3) hypotheses. All the null hypotheses tested were rejected and alternative hypotheses were accepted The study revealed that there was significant difference on the availability and utilization of instructional resources between schools with adequate and those with inadequate instructional resources on students performance in science. Based on the above findings, the researcher recommended that Ministry of Education and private school proprietors should make sure that laboratory equipment are supplied to the schools and the quantity should be supplied according to the number of students available in each school. It is also recommended that teachers should make the best use of the available instructional resources.

1.1         Background to the Study
Science education imparts a method of inquiry and a systematic way of processing knowledge about the physical world to the learners. For this reason, science education provides part of the foundation for any knowledge-based effort to improve health, nutrition, family planning, environmental, agriculture, and industry.

Science education has two broad purposes. The first purpose is to promote scientific literacy among citizens on matters directly affecting their own lives and the society so that they can make decisions based on information and understanding. This is essential for the sustainable development of a modern, technological society. The second purpose is to build up technological capability by equipping the future workforce with essential science-based knowledge and skills, and by preparing students for scientific disciplines in higher education and science-related careers. Given the potential benefits, the provision of quality science education to all children will have far reaching consequences on a country's development prospect.

Practical activities in science education are regarded as one of the necessary elements to promote understanding of scientific principles. To accomplish this goal, the equipment and experiment have to be carefully selected to give students the relevant experiences that they may need. The understanding is enhanced if the examples are coming from the daily life of the students.

Provision of relevant equipment is a necessary, but not sufficient condition for successful science teaching. Other factors such as pre-service and in-service teacher training, technical and educational suitability of equipment, distribution, maintenance and supply of consumable instructional materials influence the quality of practical activities.

Science teaching and learning requires the intensive application of resources that would appeal to all the senses of perception to improve the effectiveness of instruction as well as maximize learning. Ige, (2000) stated that science teaching and learning can only be meaningful and effective if backed up by the necessary resources to enrich instruction. Other researchers have revealed that resources are potent tools, which could be used to effectively communicate science, while enriching the learning experiences of the learners (Ango 2002, & Ngoka, 2000).

School environment has been described as an organization where resources are produced, managed and organized in such a way that enables the students to acquire desirable learning competencies. The process of managing and organizing resources is called resource utilization. The utilization of resources brings about fruitful learning since it stimulates senses as well as motivating them. Denyer (2005) in his study on science games in the United Kingdom reported that games when used as a resource enable less able children to stay on task and remain motivated for longer period.

The instructional resource brings desired improvement in teaching and learning processes by making it effective to the maximum, for cognitive, affective and psychomotor aspects of the learners. It also makes the classroom teaching easy, clear, interesting and scientific. But unfortunately these resources are not available in many secondary schools and those schools where they are available; the teachers are not interested in proper utilization of the available resources (Adetayo 2008). It is presumed that availability and proper utilization of instruction resource materials improved the performance and the output of the educational institutions. This is the reason why science teaching can only be effective when adequate and relevant instructional resources are used (Afolabi, Adeyanju, Adedapo & Falade, 2006).

Akpochafo (2003) defined resources to include “man, machine, students, materials, brains and money” which are to be planned, organized, directed, controlled and coordinated to achieve better teaching. While Achimugu (2005) categorized instructional resources into two categories- Human and Non human. He referred human resources as human beings who directly or indirectly contribute to the achievement of STM educational objectives. These include; the learner/student, laboratory technicians/assistants and the teachers. While non human instructional resources includes pictures, maps, charts, graphs, diagrams, chalkboard, sketches, atlas and painting, textbooks, encyclopedias, magazines, journals, newspapers, etc.

According to Adedayo (2000), and Afolabi (2006) resources for teaching and learning science are not available in most of the secondary schools in Nigeria. Nakashima (2000) reported that, where the materials are available, selection and organization becomes a problem.

There are persisting problems of unqualified and inexperience science teachers and lack of proper funding of schools and improper motivation of teachers by the government. This may probably have contributed to the poor performance of teachers in the discharge of their duties. It has therefore become necessary to find out the effect of the availability and utilization of instructional resources on secondary school students performance in science in Sokoto state.

The main goals of science education are to develop understanding of scientific principles by applying method of scientific inquiry, prepare students to make responsible decision concerning science related issues and inform students about possible science careers (Bybee, Carlson Powell & Trownbridge, 2007). To reach these goals, different learning environment, teaching approaches and methods are important factors to consider. In many.....

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Item Type: Project Material  |  Size: 113 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
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