Variables that influence junior secondary school students‟ attitude to agricultural science - implications for youths‟ participation in agricultural development

  • SO Olatunji
  • UR Etuk
Keywords: Attitude, Influence, Agricultural Science, single-sex schools, mixed-sex schools.

Abstract

The positive relationship between the rate of learning, attitude to and achievement in science has been documented in literature. It is therefore pertinent to assess the variables that tend to influence students’ attitude to Agricultural Science. The study assessed the influence of gender, location of school and sex composition of schools on students’ attitude to Agricultural Science. The population of study included all Junior Secondary 3 students (about 720) from 16 public Junior Secondary Schools in Umuahia Local Government Area of Abia State. Multistage (stratified and cluster) sampling techniques was employed to select a sample of 254 students. Data for the research were collected through a 32-item “Attitude to Agricultural Science Scales” that was developed by the researcher. Three research questions guided the study while 3 null hypotheses were tested. Descriptive (means) and inferential (z-test) statistical techniques were used to analyze data The results of data analyses revealed that i. sex influence students’ attitude to Agricultural science even as females exhibited a more positive attitude to Agriculture than males. However, the differences in mean attitude to Agricultural science by male and female students do not differ significantly. ii. Location of school influence students’ attitude to agricultural science. Students from rural areas exhibit a more favourable attitude to Agricultural science than their counterparts from urban areas. The differences are statistically significant at 0.05 levels. iii. School type influence students’ attitude to Agricultural science. Boys and girls from single sex schools showed more positive attitude to Agriculture than their colleagues from mixed sex schools. Differences observed are statistically significant at 0.05 levels. It was recommended that efforts be geared towards implementation of intervention programmes that will sustain and improve students’ attitude to Agricultural Science, especially in mixed-sex and urban schools where attitudes to Agriculture are at low ebbs. Provision of adequate number of Agricultural science teachers, science laboratory materials and practical Agriculture school farms will serve as catalysts for boosting students’ attitude to the subject. Successful implementation of the UBE Agricultural Science curriculum hinges on these. Science teachers and Counsellors should frequently use attitude to Agricultural Science Scales because they provide valuable data for monitoring and predicting learners’ achievement and career choices.
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