Determinants of Students Enrolment in Physics in Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education in Public Secondary Schools in Kenya: a Case of Wajir County
The fact that a small percentage of students opt to enroll for physics in Form Three despite all the three science subjects being treated as equal in terms of time allocation and mode of assessment, poses a great challenge to the overall qualification of the general work force. This study investigated the determinants of student‘s enrolment in Physics subject in secondary schools in Wajir County, Kenya. The study was guided by the following objectives: to establish the extent to which teaching methods influence students‘ enrolment in Physics in Wajir County; to examine the availability, utilization and adequacy of teaching and learning resources on students‘ enrolment in Physics in Wajir County; to examine the extent to which teachers‘ attitude towards Physics influences students enrolment in Physics and to establish the extent to which learner characteristics influence their enrollment into physic at KCSE. The study used descriptive survey research design. The target population of this study consisted of all 16 public secondary schools in Wajir County. Stratified random Sampling was used to select learners from all sixteen secondary schools in Wajir County. Purposive sampling procedure was applied to select 100% of the teachers of all 32 teachers teaching physics, 16 secondary school principals and 6 QASO officers representing six sub-counties in Wajir. The research instruments for this study were questionnaires, FDG, interview schedule and observation guide. Quantitative data drawn from questionnaires and observation schedules was analyzed by the use of descriptive statistics using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 21.0 and was presented through percentages, means, pie charts, bar graphs and frequency tables. The study found out that schools in Wajir County mainly used discussion, project method/research, educational field trips, lecture method and question and answer methods. Schools were found to have several teaching and learning resources. The teachers made use of several of them. The readily available materials were KICD Syllabus, KICD teachers‘ handbook for physics, classrooms/desks, calculator, physics charts, reference books for physics. The study also found out that physics was not very difficult understand, physics was not for bright students, physics is useful for student future career, there was discipline among students, teachers could teach physics without teaching aids and practical and physics was not boring subject to teach. The study findings indicate that class attendance and participation, peer pressure and personal goals and challenges influenced enrollment of physics in KCSE. The study thus concludes that enrollment in physics is mainly determined by pedagogical approaches, students characteristics, availability of resources and teachers attitude. The study recommends that Teachers should use effective modern teaching methods to improve absorption and retention of learnt materials by the learner. The study also recommends that school administrations should establish laboratories which are well equipped with learning materials to facilitate experimental approach by each student during practical lessons to improve performance. The study finally recommends that teachers should encourage and give students the opportunity to develop positive attitude towards Physics as a subject.
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