TEACHING FURTHER MATHEMATICS IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN CALABAR metropolis: PROBLEM AND OPPORTUNITIES
1.1 The Study's Background
The importance of mathematics in the development of any country cannot be overstated. According to Betiku (2001), Science, Technology, and Mathematics Education (STEM) is commonly acknowledged as the barometer for gauging a nation's social-economic, and geopolitical advancement. Mathematics is more than just the study of numbers taught in schools and either loved or despised by many students.
It had a significant impact on people's lives, the world, and society as a whole. Mathematics is an important field that is recognized globally, and it must be improved in education to provide students with the skills needed to complete future education or job desires, as well as to attain personal fulfillment.
Because mathematics encompasses all aspects of human life, it is undeniably important in education to assist students and people from all walks of life in performing daily tasks efficiently and becoming productive, well-informed, functional, independent individuals and members of a society in which mathematics is the fundamental component.
Mathematicians create and test so-called models of the world. This is true even for elementary mathematics; at the age of five or six, we do not study addition by joining groups of items and counting them. Languages, equations, and understanding are built in this manner, which can then be used to make a substantial contribution to our knowledge and awareness of the world around us, and so plan our course in it. Mathematics, according to Lutfuzzaman (2014), is the key to all sciences.
This is because today's world is based mostly on science, and science, in turn, is based on mathematics. Although many regard it as a theoretical topic, the fact is that mathematical areas were formed to meet the needs of day-to-day practical life. According to Stacey (2004), supplementary mathematics, which includes arithmetic, algebra, and geometry, plays an important role in education.
Mathematics may satisfy a wide range of interests and talents; it broadens the imagination; and it trains in clear and logical reasoning. It aids in the management of variations of complicated concepts and unresolved problems because it deals with the question arising from intricate structure, and with a constant urge to simplify: they can uncover the correct concept and method to make difficult things easier to describe and grasp.
Further Mathematics, on the other hand, is a relatively recent subject in the Nigerian educational system. Its incorporation into the school curriculum was one of the recommendations made during a National Mathematics Centre-hosted national workshop on policies and strategies for improving mathematics teaching and learning at all levels (NMC).
Furthermore, it was strongly believed that there is a need to teach meaningful mathematics that would contribute something to many types of students, including those who would and would not use mathematics in their following studies or careers. Further Mathematics introduces Senior Secondary School students to various themes in Advanced Level mathematics in order to prepare them to pursue mathematics or mathematics-related studies at the next level of education.
While all students offer mathematics, only a small percentage of scientific students provide Further Mathematics. The reasoning for this is not far-fetched. According to the National Council for Curriculum Assessment, many students regard mathematics as a difficult subject and advanced mathematics as a subject for only the top students.
According to Aminu (2015), students will find mathematics more appealing if they believe the topic to be exciting, useful, and relevant to their daily lives. These and other reasons, as described above, give rise to issues associated with the teaching-learning of supplementary mathematics in secondary schools.
1.2 Definition of the problem
Students' achievement in additional maths at both the Junior and Senior School levels declines over time. Many studies show that students score poorly in mathematics on both the qualifying examination (SSCE) and placement exams such as the University Matriculation Examination – UME. Odili and Vincent (2011) state that Odili and Vincent (2011) state that According to Adeoye and Aiyedun (2003), the tendency of low academic performance in further mathematics has resulted in a shortage of eligible students needed to satisfy the quota for mathematics and mathematics-focused courses in our institutions.
It is normal to believe that pupils who provide additional mathematics have a better chance of succeeding in mathematics than their peers who do not provide further mathematics. This has a direct impact on pupils' mathematics and other science success.
Wang (2019) explained that in order to maximize the opportunity to learn, the teacher's attention should not be given to broad coverage of the syllabi, but there should also be conscious efforts to teach content and skill involved deeply, despite the fact that students who offer additional mathematics have a better opportunity to learn more mathematical concepts than their counterparts who do not.
As the poor level of mathematics success has become a major source of concern, the need to investigate alternative explanations has become more pressing. These factors include student and instructor attitudes, topic complexity, instructional methodologies, and the number and quality of teachers.
Obodo (2000) decried the poor state of mathematics education in Nigeria, claiming that the problem of quality mathematics instruction and learning stems from a variety of factors. As a result, in order to promote effective teaching-learning of further mathematics in secondary school, it is necessary to identify and address this problem head on.
This compels the researcher to focus this study on the problem and prospects of teaching further mathematics in secondary schools in Calabar Metropolis.
1.3 Purpose of the research
The study's overarching goal is to investigate the problem and prospects of teaching additional mathematics in secondary schools in Calabar Metropolis. Lit specifically seeks to:
Examine the significance of additional mathematical topics in high school education.
Examine the Obstacles to Further Mathematical Teaching and Learning
Determine strict measures that the competent authorities should implement for effective mathematics teaching and learning.
1.4 Question for Research
The following research question guides the study:
What role do additional mathematical topics have in secondary school education?
What are the obstacles to increased mathematics teaching and learning?
What severe measures may the appropriate authorities implement to ensure effective further maths instruction and learning?
1.5 Importance of the research
The study's findings will give a framework for the government, curriculum planners, and education stakeholders to develop methods for improving future mathematics instruction. The study will be beneficial to teachers since it underlines the importance of improving teaching techniques and implementing instructional strategies in secondary schools to enable effective teaching and learning of advanced mathematics. Empirically, the study will add to the broader body of knowledge and act as a resource for both experts and students interested in furthering their studies in a related topic.
1.6 The Study's Scope
The study's overarching goal is to investigate the challenges and prospects of teaching more mathematics in secondary schools. The study will look on the significance of additional mathematics topics in secondary school education. It will investigate the obstacles to further mathematics teaching and learning.
It will specify severe measures that the competent authorities must implement for effective mathematics teaching and learning. The study, however, is limited to selected secondary schools in Cross River State's Calabar Metropolis.
1.7 The study's limitations
The researchers encountered minor obstacles when conducting the study, as with any human undertaking. The significant constraint was the scarcity of literature on the subject due to the nature of the discourse, so the researcher incurred more financial expenses and spent more time sourcing relevant materials, literature, or information and collecting data, which is why the researcher resorted to a limited sample size.
Furthermore, the researcher will do this investigation alongside other academic activities. Furthermore, because just a few respondents were chosen to complete the research instrument, the results cannot be extrapolated to other secondary schools. Despite the constraints encountered during the research, all elements were minimized in order to provide the best results and make the research effective.
1.8 Definitions of terminology
Mathematics also covers the study of numbers, formulas and associated structures, shapes and spaces in which they are housed, and quantities and their variations. Several advanced secondary mathematics courses are referred to as Further Mathematics.
Learning outcomes are statements that explain the knowledge or skills that students should have at the end of a specific assignment, class, course, or program and help students understand why that knowledge and those abilities will be beneficial to them.
Improving Mathematics Curriculum at the Implementation Stage, M. Akinsola and B. Ogunleye. O.A. Bamisaiye, I.A. Nwazuoke, and A. Okediran, in (Eds). Edu.
D. K. Aminu (2005). Abacus, 30 (1), 46-50. Mathematics as a discipline: Its practical application.
Curriculum Assessment National Council (2005). International Trends in Mathematics Discussion Paper A paper issued by the Irish government
M. Nicolaidou and G. Philippou (2003). Attitudes toward mathematics self-efficacy and problem-solving achievement in European Research in Mathematics Education III, Mariotti M. A. (Ed), University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy, I – II.
G. C. Obodo (2000). Mathematics education principles and practice in Nigeria enugu: University of Science and Technology, General Studies Division, published
A. Odili and A. Vincent (2011) evaluated the impact of the Further Mathematics curriculum in Nigeria. 5 December, Educational Research and Reviews, Vol. 6(20), pp. 997-1004.
A. Lutfuzzaman (2014). Creating a Culture of Quality Mathematics Education in Bangladesh, Bangladesh Forum for Educational Development, 5 (2), pp. 25-34.
K. Stacey (2004). Research Trends in Science, Technology, and Mathematics Education, 147-174. http://www.hbcse.tifr.res.in/jrmcont/all-proceedings.pdf
Wang, J.R. (2019). Evaluating the Mathematics Learning Environment in Taiwanese Elementary and Secondary Schools 853-872 in International Journal of Science Education, 31(7).
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TEACHING FURTHER MATHEMATICS IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN CALABAR METROPOLIS: PROBLEM AND OPPORTUNITIES