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THE INFLUENCE OF FAMILY BACKGROUND VARIABLES ON STUDENT ACADEMIC ATTAINMENT IN BIOLOGY

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THE INFLUENCE OF FAMILY BACKGROUND VARIABLES ON STUDENT ACADEMIC ATTAINMENT IN BIOLOGY

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1    BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY

In a variety of ways, a child's existence revolves around his or her family. A home or all those who dwell in a house, such as parents and children, constitute a family. When a child is born, the first contact(s) he or she has with the outside world is with his or her family (parents). He is originally exposed to before he has any contact with the outer world. A child's household environment has a significant impact on his or her development. A child's growth is entirely dependent on his or its physical ancestors as well as the enormous impacts of the environment, i.e. nature and nurture (Osarenre, 1996).

Impressively,  what a child acquires from nature and what he receives from nurture is decided by his family history and the environment in which he grows up. According to Plomim (1990), shatter (1993), human characteristics and personality are the final outcome of the interplay between genetics and environment. Home-related variables and school-related factors are the two sorts of factors that impact children's school success. Home-related factors include parental education, job, family size, parental attitude toward education and expectations, parental involvement in child's academics, parenting style, and so on. The home setting has an impact on the school environment (Banjo, 1961, Plowdem 1967, Bowler and Levim 1968, Marijobanks, 1973, Parke, 1978, Taiwo, 1981).

According to Plowden (1967), a student's family background is a more significant predictor of his/her achievement than educational system input. Bowler and Levim (1968) observed that a group of students' family background features not only determine the advantages with which they arrive at school, but they are also closely connected to the amount and quality of resources invested in the school. As a result, they proposed that children from affluent homes have two distinct advantages over children from low-income families. First, their parents' combination of material advantages and strong educational interest stimulates high achievement and education motivation; second, their parents' relatively high income and interest in their children's education leads to greater financial support for and participation in the school that their children attend.

 According to Lam and Shui Fong (1997), numerous elements in students' family backgrounds, such as the socioeconomic status of students' parents and family ties, such as the parent-child bond, have a direct influence on their academic success. Socioeconomic status has an impact on educational performance. Some children  will naturally outperform others in class, but the extent to which family background elements contribute to this natural phenomenon should be researched in order to reduce the impact of socioeconomic inequalities on the natural occurrence.

Furthermore, the level of parental education, as a home-related family background aspect, is also important. According to the Cobb Harvin Worth (2010)research, gifted children have less than one sibling/child. In terms of birth order, they discovered that more than half of them were born first. Zajone et al (2008) demonstrate the association between birth order in the family and success. These people came to the conclusion that achievement decreases in monogamous households. Mutual (2007) also said that several family characteristics like as birth order, child spacing, and family size might have an impact on academic success, either favorably or adversely. Still focusing on birth order, Altus (2010) discovered that earlier siblings in a family were more bright, more likely to attend college, and more likely to reach eminence than later born siblings. Altus (2008) discovered that first-born college children from two-child households performed better [up to 80%] on qualitative subjects if they had younger brothers rather than younger sisters. Similarly, Glass et al (2007) discovered that firstborn children outperform later born children when they came from a better socioeconomic stratum. Morrich suggests that a parent's interest in and educational aspirations for their children cannot be divorced for the sake of their children. Smart [2009] discovered a link between kid accomplishment behavior and desire to achieve and parent achievement behavior and ambitions. According to Fafunwa (1963), the level of education of the individuals with whom a kid lives influences his or her academic accomplishment. If a youngster grows up in a home with a significant number of intellectual people, he or she will be able to share his or her academic difficulties with them.

1.2    STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

Parents continue to be concerned about their children's academic performance as a result of the necessity for students to succeed academically in school. This fear stems from the fact that children are no longer performing as well academically as their predecessors from previous years. Some parents do not care or do not want to investigate whether any external causes are to blame for their children's low academic achievement. If the parents' concern is real, one must wonder if there are any elements that impact their children's academic achievement in school. It is often assumed that children's intellectual achievement is influenced in part by their parents' academic backgrounds. The majority of research has focused on the link between the family environment and academic success. Some, however, are particular to the parent's educational background and their children's academic accomplishment. Ugunlade (2007)  discovered the  disparities in academic success in secondary school pupils from literate and non-literate environments in his study. His research found that students from literate households outperformed those from illiterate homes. Hewison and Pizard (2008) investigated the association between a variety of home background characteristics and reading ability. They investigated three classes of working-class students aged 7-8 by administering standardized tests to the youngsters and interviewing their parents. A substantial association between home and reading achievement was discovered in their study. "The association between two factors may be that more intellectual parents have more intelligent children," they observed.      According to Marrich (2000), there is no doubt that parental views influence the attitudes of their children. A parent who disregards education and the importance of social behavior in any type of social enhancement is destined to produce children who make little progress in school.  In the bid to contribute to the explanation on students performance, the study sought to examine the effect of family background variables in secondary school students’ Academic performance in Biology.

1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

The broad objective of the study is focused on  the influence of family background variables on student academic attainment in biology. Specifically, the study seeks:

i.          To determine  whether there is a difference in the academic achievement of student from monogamous home and those from polygamous home.

ii.        To find out if there is a difference in the academic achievement of student from rich  home and those from poor home.

iii.      To investigate  whether there is a difference in academic achievement of students from literate parents and those from illiterate parents.

1.4   RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS

The research is guided by by the following hypothesis

HO1: There is no significant difference in academic achievement of student from monogamous home and those from polygamous home.

HO2: There will be no significant difference in the academic achievement of student from rich  home and those from poor home.

HO3: There is no significant main difference in academic achievement of students from literate parents and those from illiterate parents.

1.5   SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

The study is significant in that The data collected will provide information on the perceived relationship between family background variables and academic achievement of secondary school students in Biology. This study should help parents to create an appropriate learning environment at home to enhance academic performance of their children. It will help in improving the relationship between parents and their children (students).

This study will also enable parents and teachers to appreciate the difficulties the students encounter during learning process and how these can affect their academic performances. This will in other words, help to foster interaction and understanding between teachers and students, parents and students since both parents and teachers have the knowledge and understanding of the effect of the family background on academic achievement.  The outcome of this study will be beneficial to teachers, educators and school counselors in dealing with students’ problem.

Empirically, the study is also significant in that it will make good contribution to existing literature on effects of family background on academic achievement.

1.6    SCOPE OF THE STUDY

The scope of this study borders on   the influence of family background variables on student academic attainment in biology. This study is limited to selected secondary schools in Ado-Ekiti Local Government Area of Ekiti State.

1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

Like in every human endeavour, the researchers encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. The significant constraint was the scanty literature on the subject owing that it is a new discourse thus the researcher incurred more financial expenses and much time was required in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection, which is why the researcher resorted to a limited choice of sample size covering only selected secondary schools in Ado-Ekiti Local Government Area of Ekiti State.. Thus findings of this study cannot be used for generalization for secondary schools in other  States within Nigeria. Additionally, the researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work will impede maximum devotion to the research. Howbeit, despite the constraint  encountered during the  research,  all factors were downplayed in other to give the best and make the research successful.


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



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