School-based factors influencing students' enrolment in technical subjects in secondary schools in Dagoretti District, Nairobi county, Kenya
Kiruja, Christine G
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The study sought to find out the school- based factors that influence students' enrolment in technical subjects in secondary schools in Dagoretti district, Nairobi County. The objectives of . the study were: influence of physical facilities, school policy, the curriculum and extent of career guidance services on students' enrolment in technical and creative arts subjects in secondary schools. The study used descriptive survey design that used both qualitative and quantitative methods in presentation and drawing of inferences. Out of 400 teachers, the researcher used simple random sampling to select 10% of those teaching Technical and Creative Arts subjects'. All the 10 head teachers' were targeted. The study used simple random sampling to select 10% Form Three students hence 400 which translate to 20 students per school meaning a total of 420 respondents were involved. The research instruments were questionnaires for students, head teachers and teachers and observation. A pilot study was carried to determine validity and reliability of the instruments. Validity of the instruments was detennined using expert help from lecturers in the Department of Educational Planning and Administration; while . the reliability of the instruments was carried out using test pre-test method. A correlation coefficient of 7.4 was determined using Spearman prophecy technique. Quantitative data used descriptive statistical analysis presented using tables and percentages since they are easy to interpret. For qualitative data, coding and assigning labels was done. Common themes were obtained from the data collected and clustered in a patterned order. The data was then entered into the computer using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 17. The findings of the study were that schools had a wide range of physical resources namely classrooms, computer laboratories, special rooms and workshops that were not adequate; most schools studied had a policy of forcing students to enroll for computer studies. The school curriculum had a direct influence on the students' enrolment in technical subjects which was determined by availability of physical facilities and school policy. Agriculture, Home science and Music were the most common technical subjects offered in schools. Career guidance services are adequately available in schools and majority of students sought guidance from careers teachers before enrolling in technical subjects. Based on the findings it was concluded that schools have adequate physical facilities. Students are mostly allowed to enroll in certain subjects freely without being forced although some schools have a policy of forcing students to do certain technical subjects like computer studies. Challenges facing enrollment of students in technical subjects were inadequate practical materials and shortage of teachers. Career guidance services are available in schools. The study suggested that a nationwide study be conducted on the factors that influence enrolment in technical subjects.