EFFECT OF SCIENCE PROCESS SKILLS ADVANCE ORGANIZER ON SECONDARY SCHOOL PHYSICS STUDENTS’ PERFORMANCE AND MOTIVATION IN ELECTRIC CIRCUITS, LAIKIPIA COUNTY, KENYA
KIGO, JOSEPHAT KIGO
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Physics concepts have played a significant role in the development of technology, industries and social development. There are exciting and productive careers emanating from good understanding and application of physics principles, concepts and science process skills learned in physics education. In Kenyan secondary schools, one is allowed to sit for at least two sciences at the Kenyan Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations. Students are allowed to choose any two science subjects from among Biology, Chemistry and Physics while at Form Three but can also choose to do all the three subjects at the end of the secondary level. Despite the importance of physics, few students choose physics as their learning subject and the performance is lower compared to the other sciences at KCSE examinations. Fewer girls choose to do Physics at KCSE and their performance is also lower than that of boys. The poor performance and low enrolment in physics at Kenya Certificate of Secondary Examination may be due to lack of motivation or inappropriate teaching strategies among others. This study investigated the effects on performance and motivation after exposing Form two students to science process skills advance organizer (SPSAO) before the teaching of physics concepts in electrical circuits as required by the KCSE syllabus. The science process skills (SPS) exposed to students were observing, measuring, predicting, experimenting and hypothesizing. These skills were exposed to students as treatment before the lesson. Four mixed day public schools from Laikipia Central Sub-County were randomly assigned to Solomon four-group design for data collection and evaluation of the effect of the science process skills advance organizer on student’s motivation and performance in Electric current circuits in secondary school physics. A total of 191 form two students participated in the study. Multistage sampling was used to select the four schools that participated in the study. The instruments for data collection were physics Achievement tests (PAT) that was administered as pretest and posttest and a students’ motivation questionnaire (SMQ) which was given to students who were treated with the SPSAO. The instruments were pilot tested before subjecting them to students for results reliability. The SPSS (Statistical package for social sciences) output for reliability of the piloted results for (PAT) and (SMQ) were Cronbach’s alpha 0.951 and 0.799 respectively. The (PAT) pretest and posttest were administered to students between two weeks while the (SMQ) was administered to students who were exposed to the science process skills advance organizer (SPSAO) after the posttest. Data collected was analyzed using the ANCOVA, the t-test, ANOVA and the factor analysis. Hypotheses were accepted or rejected at a significance level of alpha of 0.05. The results of the study may provide a radical shift from teacher-centered methods of teaching physics and motivate students to higher level science process skills and give secondary school students confidence to engage in physics as a learning subject. The findings of the study indicated that Science Process Skills Advance Organizer improved Physics performance in the electric circuit topic, motivated students towards physics and showed no gender dependence. From the findings of the study, valuable information yielded will inform secondary school physics teachers, curriculum developers, teachers’ educators and policy makers on appropriate measures to improve on teaching methods, trainee teacher education programs and designing of workshops to in-service practicing physics teachers and tutors.