CHALLENGES AND PROSPECT OF TEACHING AND LEARNING OF ACCOUNTING IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS
Background to the study
It is true that many students in Accounting Education today do not have secondary school background in Accounting unlike Mathematics, Economics, “English, Government and so on therefore, they tend to have a negative attitude at the very beginning of the course at the university and assume that accounting is a very difficult course.
Students negative attitude toward accounting, considering it a difficult subject. This is usually manifested by their poor performance and high rate of failure in Principles of accounting.
Since principle of Accounting has come to stay in Nigeria secondary school the factors that affect students’ performance in the subject becomes a necessity.
Accounting has been generically referred to as the language of business. It is an aid to trade and one of the foundations on which the whole structure of business rests. Accounting is a process of identifying, recording and interpreting economic events. “It is the determination, analysis, interpretation and communication of economic data” Accounting is an indispensable tool for entrepreneurship in any of the vocational skill. Hence, it is an element of business education and business education itself is a component of vocational education (V. E.) Osuala (1981) described vocational education as including such areas as Agricultural, Business, Health Occupations, Industrial/Technical and Home Economics.
A successful career in vocational education can only be guaranteed by a proper and accurate keeping of financial records. Whatever affects the effective development of vocational education affects the economic development of any such nation. Vocational education prepares people for occupations requiring manipulative skills. Indeed, it is designed to develop skills, knowledge, abilities, attitudes and work habits needed for self-sufficiency (Azikiwe, 2015). It is basically occupation oriented because it is essentially intended to provide skills and manpower for commerce and industry in any nation. Hence Arukwe (2013) noted that the solutions to Nigerian present economic problems couldn’t exclude the intensification of vocational education for the citizenry. Olaferu-Olagbegi (1988), observed that combating unemployment in Nigeria through the creation of self-employment, emphasizes the establishment of small-scale enterprises in rural areas by skilled personnel who are products of vocational education. The possession of the necessary skill in financial record keeping is a priority and accounting process is a solution.
The problems facing accounting in Secondary Schools are twofold: the teaching on the one hand and learning on the other hand. The performance of students in the subject in the SSC Examination has not been encouraging. Students are generally deficient in numerate subjects like accounting and mathematics. Fakuade’s (2010) report, that pupils had been deficient in simple knowledge, abilities, attitudes and work-habits needed for self-sufficiency (Azikiwe, 2015). It is basically occupation oriented because it is essentially intended to provide skills and manpower for commerce and industry in any nation. Hence Arukwe (201) noted that the solutions to Nigerian present economic problems couldn’t exclude the intensification of vocational education for the citizenry. Olateru-Olagbegi (2008), observed that combating unemployment in Nigeria through the creation of self-employment, emphasizes the establishment of small-scale enterprises in rural areas by skilled personnel who are products of vocational education. The possession of the necessary skill in financial record keeping is a priority and accounting process is a solution.
The problems facing accounting in Secondary Schools are twofold: the teaching on the one hand and learning on the – other hand. The performance of students in the subject in the SSC Examination has not been encouraging. Students are generally deficient in numerate subjects like accounting and mathematics. Fakuade’s (2010) report, that pupils had been deficient in simple mathematics can also be applied to accounting. The ever-increasing poor performance of students in accounting in secondary and post secondary Schools is a serious concern and unpalatable signal to the development of accountancy (Oloidi 2003a). No doubt the poor performance in accounting can be traced, in part, to the poor methods of teaching the subject. As Agbenta (2011) has pointed out on the need for practical lessons in the physical sciences, it can also be stated that teaching of accounting in secondary school without the use of accounting laboratory for practical lesson, inhibits the study of the subject. Teachers should improve on their teaching methods and processes. While it is not the objective of this paper to be teaching methodologies, it is of utmost necessity that accounting teachers should note that the enduring solutions to these problems are from the teachers. Accounting teacher should be ‘efficient, effective and qualitative. Marving, Kinder and Schunert (2010) argued that the effective teacher should have good understanding of the subject he teaches. Lack of good preparation was identified by Clark (1977) as causing poor teaching. On the part of the students, the findings of Ajogbeje (2007) on mathematics can logically be applied. He stressed sex- stereotyping, transfer of poor attitude between peers and from older students, and poor self-concept towards the subject, the influence of the environment on the student, .as affecting learning. The government on its own part needs to provide adequate fund, materials and human resources and necessary motivation of student and teachers (Oloidi, 2003).
Against the foregoing background, it would therefore be very necessary for accounting teachers, the secondary school administrators and the government to take a critical look at the ways of improving the status of accounting as a subject in secondary school
Statement of the Problem
Observations and reports from examining bodies like WAEC, NECO and JAMB revealed that a high percentage of secondary school students continue to perform poorly in principle of accounting. Despite the laudable efforts at developing an acceptable general accounting curriculum students’ performance in the subject appears to be declining over the years. Yet in the face of all these efforts put in place by various stake holder and curriculum planner the rate and degree of students’ poor performance in senior secondary school examination in principle of accounting must now be a problem of national concern. The question that readily comes to mind is; what are the problem confronting the the teaching and leanring of accounting? Are the teachers of principle of accounting adequately qualified and properly trained in the subject? Is the excessive workload and lack of teacher training facilities at the root of poor teaching of accounting?
Purpose of the study
The major purpose of this study is find out the challenges and prospect of teaching and learning of accounting in secondary schools in Omala Local Government of Kogi State
Specifically, the study will;
- find out the challenges facing the teaching and learning of Accounting in Secondary schools?
- Determine if teachers’ and students’ attitude towards teaching and learning of principle of accounting is one the major problem confronting the teaching and learning of accounting in Omala local government area
- Determine if school environment affect the teaching of accounting
- Find out if Teachers’ teaching methods affect the teaching and learning of accounting
- Find out if teachers’ use of instructional materials contribute to the problem of teaching and learning of accounting
- To profer solution on the challenges facing teaching and learning of accounting.
To achieve the objective of the study, five research questions were raised.
- What are the challenges facing teaching and learning of accounting in secondary schools?
- Does teachers’ attitude to the teaching of principle of accounting constitute a problem in the teaching of accounting?
- Does school environment influence the teaching and learning of accounting?
- Does teaching method constitute significant problem in teaching principle of accounting?
- Does the lack of instructional materials, educational facilities and inadequate supervision constitute a significant problem in teaching and learning of accounting?
- What are the solution to the challenges in teaching and learning of accounting?
Significance of Study
It is envisaged that findings from the study may reveal Challenges that influence the teaching and learning of Accounting Examination in Kogi State. This exposition would help Kogi state to adapt workable measures or strategies that are likely to improve the teaching and learning of accounting.
The study would provide information that is likely to be useful for the purposes of In-Service Training for teachers and other stakeholders in education in the State. It may also serve as a reference material for policymakers to consider in the design of programmes to pursue at the basic level of education that might yield encouraging WAEC results.
Finally, this study is likely to inspire other researchers to embark on similar studies into challenges and prospect in teaching and learning of accounting in other Districts and satieties, so that more general information about factors that contribute to falling standards in education especially in Public schools could be obtained and addressed to improve academic performance of students.
Scope of the study
The study covered 5 Senior Secondary Schools in Omala Local government area of Kogi State. The study covers three private schools and 2 public schools
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
A lot have been written on the teaching and learning of accounting. The reason for this chapter is to review related literature on the challenges and prospect facing teaching and learning of accounting in Omala Local government area of Kogi State. The review is organized into the following sub-headings:
- Concepts of principle of Accounting
- Objectives of principle of Accounting
- Methods of teaching principle of Accounting
- The roles of instructional materials in teaching principle of Accounting
- Teachers attitude as its effects on students performance, students learning attitude and its effect on their performances
- Problem confronting the teaching and learning of accounting
- Empirical studies
- Theoretical framework
- Summary of literature review