Title - - - - - - - - -

Cover page - - - - - - - - - i

Title page - - - - - - - - - ii

Declaration - - - - - - - - - iii

Certification - - - - - - - - - iv

Dedication - - - - - - - - - v

Acknowledgement - - - - - - - - vi

Abstract - - - - - - - - - vii

Table of contents - - - - - - - - viii

List of tables - - - - - - - - - xi

List of figures---------

List of Appendices - - - - - - - - xii


1.1 Background of the Study - - - - - -

1.2Statement of the Problem------

1.3 Purpose of the Study - - - - - - -

1.4 Research Question - - - - - - -

1.5 Research Hypothesis - - - - - - - -

1.6 Significance of the Study - - - - - - -

1.7 Delimitation of the Study - - - - - - -

1.8 Assumption - - - - - - - - -

1.9 Definition of Terms - - - - - - - -


2.1. Theoretical framework - - - - - - -

2.1.1 Behavoural learning theory by Edward Ice-Thorndike (1874-1949)

2.1.2 Constructivism Theory of learning - - - - -

2.1.3 Multiple Intelligence  Theory by Howard Gardners (1983) - -

2.1.4 Social Learning Theory by Jerome Bruner (1990)    - - -

2.2 Conceptual framework - - - - - -

2.2.1 Concept Laboratory Method - - - - - -

2.2.2 Demonstration Method of Teaching - - - - -

2.2.3 Concept of Simple Harmonie Motion - - - -

2.3 Review of related Empirical Studies - - - - -

2.3.1 Laboratory Method and Student academic performances - -

2.3.2 Demonstration method and student academic performances - -

2.3.3 Gender performance in Physics - - - - -

2.3.4 School Locations and student’s performance ---

2.4Summary of Literature Review -----


3.1Design of the Study------

3.2 Area of the Study - - - - - - -

3.3 Population of the Study - - - - - -

3.4 Sample and Sampling Techniques - - - - -

3.5 Instrumentation - - - - - - - -

3.5.1 Validation of the Instrument - - - - -

3.5.2 Reliability of the Instrument - - - - - -

3.6 Method of Data Collection - - - - - -

3.7Scoring of Instrument------

3.8 Method of data Analysis

3.8.1 Decision Rule





1.1 Background of the Study 

Throughout the world, education is considered to be an important tool for attaining national goals as it   provides learners with skills needed for survival.  In view of its significance, Nigeria having realized the role of education as a powerful instrument for national growth and development adjusted her educational philosophy and methodology to match the ideals and challenges of a changing economic and social structure of modern society.  Consequently, in 1982, Nigeria adjusted her secondary school system to encompass diversified curriculum that integrate technical and vocational subjects intended to empower the individual for self employment (Igwe, 2000). Though, the dream of every good Nigerian is to see our nation develop scientifically and technologically. This earnest craving for scientific and technological development can only be attainable if it is backed up with good foundation in science and mathematics.  Physics and other science subjects are veritable instruments for national development.  The current generation of secondary school students, so called “digital natives” (Prensky, 2001; Proserpio and Giola, 2007), and others have already used technology to enhance their social interaction, shop online and interact with online tool (Nwosu, 2010).  Man is greatly dependent on science and technology for growth and development.

According to Okon-Enoh (2008), science is a way of seeking information (process) and also an accumulated knowledge resulting from research (products). Okoro (2013), described science as a systematic investigation of nature with a view to understanding and harnessing them to serve human needs.  It may also be regarded as a body of related courses concerned with knowledge.  It consists among other components; Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Mathematics, Astronomy, Agriculture, Geology and so on.  Science education in Nigeria concentrates on the teaching of science concepts, methods of teaching and addressing misconceptions held by learners regarding science concepts (Kola, 2013).  Realizing the role of science plays in achieving self-reliance and intellectual development, one tries to find the place of physics in science; its contributions to the quality of life and nation building are worthwhile in all aspects (Shukla, 2011).

Simple Harmonic Motion (SHM) is one of the most topics in Physics at the senior secondary school level, in which learners perceive difficult despite being essential for the understanding of other topics (Ekpenyong, 2010).  One of the main barriers that students encountered in understanding physics concepts is misconceptions which they had about the concept. Many studies persistently report of the poor performance of students in physics especially in the area of Simple Harmonic Motion call for urgent attention (Ekpenyong, 2010). This challenging situation has been attributed to a whole number of factors such as students’ attitude, poor study habits, the learner’s interest in the subjects, the learners self-concept, gender, and the teaching methods (Effiong, 2013). Many learners experience difficulties when learning abstract concepts because the concepts are taught at theoretical level with no visual/mental representative (Mills, 2002). Consequently, learners fail to understand the concepts and therefore develop a negative attitude towards Physics.

According to Etiubon (2011), the science classrooms are still being dominated by Teacher-centered strategy of lecture method of teaching.  Research findings in the last decades revealed that students commonly lack a deep conceptual understanding of the key ideas regarding the concept of Simple Harmonic Motion and often fail to integrate their mental models into a coherent conceptual framework (Etiubon 2011). Effective teaching method employed by the teachers is the major contributory factor that influences learners understanding of concept of Simple Harmonic Motion (Ekpenyong 2010). A teaching strategy therefore is the way a lesson is approach that will be used to achieve a set of given objectives. If proper choice of strategy is made and the plan well executed students will actively engage in the lesson and derive benefit immediately (Aderati 2011). There are varieties of teaching strategies from which a teacher  can selects for teaching and learning of Physics  concepts, but the method employed will depend on a number of variables such as; age  of the students, their learning style, their cognitive level, subject  matter, availability of instructional material and environmental variables etc.  Two or more teaching method can be employed within a lesson content delivery for effective teaching to take place. Computer simulation, laboratory and demonstration methods are essentials for teaching the concept of Simple Harmonic Motion in Physics (Alice 2015).

Laboratory method of teaching is an activity-based method that requires students to search for knowledge, generate hypotheses, collect data, interpret evidence and make conclusion (Geraldine, 2008). Laboratory method is also called experimental method.  It is the method of teaching science and it forms part of effective teacher and students work together.  Students are often provided with opportunities to discover new rules, insight and new method of solving problems.

Although laboratory method of teaching is time consuming, it however helps to build self-concept of the learner. It also facilitates better understanding of scientific concepts and principles, promotes analytical thinking skills, arouses student interest, promotes students participation and encourages students to make scientific research and consider science as a career. Science educators have believed that the laboratory method is an important means of instruction in science, since late in the 19th century.  Laboratory method was considered essential because it provided training in observation, supplied detailed information, and aroused pupils’ interest.  In laboratory, students work individually or in small groups on a question, problem or hypothesis.  They use the process and materials of science to construct their own explanation of scientific phenomena.  The distinction between laboratory and traditional classroom learning is that activities are student-centered, with students activity engaged in hands-on, minds-on activities using laboratory techniques (Udofia, 2018).  Agbogun, (2001) reported that; laboratory method is a unique source of quality teaching and learning in science because science students are able  to observe  and manipulate materials to demonstrate certain aspects, of the subject matter which has been  learnt in class through lecturers, method.

The laboratory method is activity oriented which offers the students the opportunity to interact with learning content, teacher, laboratory specimen and materials, to develop scientific attitudes such as objectivity, critical thinking, carefulness, etc.  It also offers the students the opportunity to develop the scientific skills as they observe, measure, record, manipulate, experiment and draw conclusion. In line with this Schulman and Tamir as cited by Abimbola (2004) identified the objectives of using laboratory methods to include teaching and learning of skills, concepts, attitudes, cognitive abilities and understanding of nature of science.  Through laboratory method, students are actively involved in the process of learning and retention is possible. Laboratory activities can help students develop new interest, attitudes and values so that they may learn to investigate and explore further into their environment.

Demonstration method of teaching is an activity-based teaching that provides students with opportunity to be actively involved mentally and physically, doing hands –on, minds-on and head-on experiments and activity.  Demonstration method on the other hand involves showing by reason, or proof, explain or making clear by the use of examples or experiments.  Put it more simply, demonstration means to “clearly show.” It is based on demonstrating skills, principles, and theory via performance, motion, slide presentation, live display. 

Demonstration often occurs when students have a hard time connecting theories to actual practice or when students are unable to understand application of theories. It allows students to view real life examples of a skills or procedures for doing something. It is useful in teaching psycho-motor skills. It makes verbal explanation more concrete. In demonstration method, the teaching and learning process is done in a systematic way.  Aniodoh (2008) defined demonstration as an activity in which teacher or any person uses examples, experiment and other actual performance to illustrate principle or show others how to do something. He identified types of demonstrations to include; Teacher-demonstration, teacher-students demonstrations, students’ demonstration and quest demonstration. This work was focused on teacher-demonstration. Many studies show that demonstration method of teaching science trains students to be good observers and appeals to their senses of vision.  It bridges the gap between theory and practice.  It is economical in terms of time and materials since many students can observe one demonstration at a time.  It encourage questioning and thinking thereby improve learning.

Learning by doing is the main focus and is imperative in successful learning, since it is well proven that the more the senses are stimulated, the more a person learns and longer the learner retains (Limbu, 2012).  

Simple Harmonic motion is the to and fro motion of a particle from the mean position. It is the motion of a particle whose acceleration is always (a) Directed towards a fixed point (b) Directly proportional to its distance from that point.  

Gender is the condition of being male or female; ones sex. Asuquo (2005), observed  that male and female students could do well is exposed to similar learning conditions, and gender tends to play a minor role in the success or failure of students as there is no conclusive evidence that male or female students perform better than other in all areas. Researchers then tend to turn their attention towards other factors such as age, interest, attitude, and background of the students to determine academic superiority. King (2004) contended that given the uniformity of instructional materials, contents, strategy and sequence there is no reason to expect any gender difference in student’s academic performance. 

School location is a place where the school is located. It could be in urban or rural areas.  Learning environment has a serious effect on students’ achievement; this is so because there exist direct relationship between the learning environment and school location. The environment where school is located can either improve or hinder students’ academic performance. Research reports show that most rural schools are not well equipped as urban schools. And as such students from urban schools achieved significantly better than students from rural schools. It is against the background that, physics students perform poorly in the concept of simple harmonic motion that the researcher is motivated to investigate how the identified factors influence performance in Physics.        

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Physics is a practical oriented subject that needs concrete and tangible materials to make its teaching and learning exciting.  It engages learners in activities that provoke meaningful learning through appropriate teaching techniques.  It builds in the learners an inquisitive spirit, sound initiative, ability and creative skills that will subdue the world around us.  Teaching strategies pose great challenge to teachers. Researchers also revealed that, poor performance of students in science and in physics generally is a result of poor teaching methods adopted by the teachers, lack of laboratory apparatus/instructional materials, students’ attitude, misconception about physics, and among others.   

Researches affirm that the use of appropriate teaching method such as laboratory and demonstration  learning strategy pulls learners out of their usual traditional settings and encourages them to apply other rich options in developing their research and improving study skills (Udo and Etiubon, 2011, Idika, Akubuiro, and Umobong,2012; Ezeudu and Ezinwanne, 2013).  How can this problem be addressed? The best way of tackle the problem of poor performance of students is to train teachers on how to select appropriate teaching method from a list of methods in teaching a given concepts in the area of specialization. All educational facilities, materials, teaching aids, and instructional material should be evenly distributed to all schools. It is against poor performance of students in physics that the researcher is motivated to examine the effects of laboratory (activity–based) and demonstration method on students’ performance in Simple Harmonic Motion.

1.3 Purpose of the Study

The purpose of the study is to find out the effects of laboratory and demonstration methods of teaching on students’ achievement in the concept of Simple Harmonic Motion in physics.  Specifically, the study intends to achieve the following objectives:-

(i) Compare the performance of physics students’ taught   Simple harmonic Motion using laboratory method and those taught using demonstration method.

(ii) Compare the performance of male and female physics students taught using laboratory method.

(iii) The compare the performance of male and female physics students, taught using demonstration method.

(iv) Compare the performance of urban and rural physics students taught using laboratory method.

(v) Compare the performance of urban and rural physics students taught the concept of Simple Harmonic Motion using demonstration method.

1.4  Research Questions

In order to achieve the stated objectives, the following research questions were raised to guide the study.

(i) What is the performance of physic students in the concept of Simple Harmonic Motion when taught using laboratory method and when taught using demonstration method?

(ii) What is the performance of male and female physics students in Simple Harmonic Motion when taught using laboratory method?

(iii) What is the performance of male and female physics students in the concept of Simple Harmonic Motion when taught using demonstration method?

(iv) What difference exist between the mean achievement scores of urban and rural physics students taught Simple Harmonic Motion using laboratory method?

(iv)    What is the performance of urban and rural physics students in the concept of Simple Harmonic Motion when taught using demonstration method?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

The following null hypotheses were formulated to guide the study.

(i) There is no significant difference between the mean achievement scores of students taught Simple Harmonic Motion using laboratory method and those taught using demonstration method.

(ii) There is no significant difference between the mean achievement scores of male and female students taught the concept of Simple Harmonic Motion using laboratory method.

(iii) There is no significant difference between the mean scores of male and female students in Simple Harmonic Motion taught using demonstration method.

(iv) There is no significant difference between the mean achievement scores of urban and rural physics students taught Simple Harmonic Motion using laboratory method. 

(v) There is no significant difference between the mean scores of urban and rural physics students in Simple Harmonic Motion when taught using demonstration method.

1.6 Significance of the Study

The study might be of benefit to physic teachers, students, teachers in different fields of specialization curriculum planners and developers, government and educationist.  The study will help both science and non-science teachers to select the best teaching method from the variety of teaching methods to effect a change in the learners life. It will also help teachers to improvise instructional package in the absence of the standardized ones for effective teaching and lesson delivery. For students, it will contribute toward improving student’s performance in simple Harmonic Motion and in physics generally. It will make teaching of physics and other science related subjects interesting, attractive, concrete, and get students activity involved in teaching and learning processes. 

The study might also help government to see the need for organizing in service training, workshops and seminars to all teachers on the selection and application of appropriate teaching methods in their respective field of specialization. The study will also help curriculum planners/developers to improve on the curriculum contents and method of teaching.        

1.7 Delimitation of the Study

The study was delimited to the effects of laboratory and demonstration methods on academic performance of physics students in the concept of Simple Harmonic Motion in senior secondary schools in Uruan Local Government of Akwa Ibom State.  Only senior secondary two physics students were used for the study.  Factors affecting students’ performance in physics such as teaching methods, Gender, and school location and students’ retention level are also within the scope of the study.

1.8 Limitations of the study: The major limitation of this work include the short period for the completion of the study which makes the work have a limited scope, financial constraints which hindered the purchase of necessary material for experimental procedures and to carryout the study in all schools in Uruan local Government area of Akwa Ibom State also posed limitation. 

1.9 Definition of Terms

1.9.1 Laboratory method of teaching:  It is inquiry based learning which supports the students to apply their knowledge, understand the real world situation and support discovery or scientific facts and principles. 

1.9.2 Demonstration method: It is the method of teaching in which the teacher/students models the correct techniques or procedure for doing something. 

1.9.3 Students Achievement: It is the level of performance of students indicated by their  scores on the specific subject matter using achievement Test (AT) 

1.9.4 Simple Harmonic Motion: It is the motion of the body or particle whose acceleration is directed towards a fixed point (centre) and it is also proportional to its displacement from that point.   




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