0813 406 9676 kenterpro1@gmail.com




The study seeks to compare between the Effects of Activity-based teaching strategy and Discussion teaching method on Secondary School Student’s Academic Performance in Biology in Pankshin Area Directorate of Education. The study adopted a pretest-posttest quasi-experimental design with non-equivalent control group. The sample for the study consisted of 150 senior secondary II biology students. Purposive sampling was used to select five schools in Pankshin Area Directorate of Education. The instrument used for the study was the Biology Achievement Test (BAT) designed by the researchers. Section A of the instrument contained 20 multiple-choice items; section B contained 2 essay questions all for the measurement of students’ achievement in Biology. Three research questions and a hypothesis were formulated to guide the study. The hypothesis was tested at 0.05 level of significance. The data collected were analyzed using mean and standard deviation and chi-square statistical tools. The results showed that there was a significant difference in the mean achievement scores of students taught Biology using activity-based teaching strategy and those taught using discussion method with those taught using activity-based teaching strategy having a higher mean gain. This shows that activity-based teaching strategy has more effect on students’ achievement in Biology than the discussion method. The result also shows that gender was not a significant factor in determining students’ achievement in Biology. The study concludes that activity-based teaching strategy and discussion methods of teaching enhance students’ achievement in Biology if properly utilized. Furthermore, the study observed that activity-based teaching strategies are more effective in enhancing students’ level of achievement and retention in Biology and that the use of activity-based teaching and learning strategies (such as discussion method) in educational institutions has the potential to improve achievement, empower students and galvanize the effort to achieve the human development goals for the country. Finally the study recommend among others that Biology teachers should be discouraged from using teacher-center instructional strategy in biology but rather, activity-based teaching strategy where students’ would be actively involved in the art teaching and learning.




1.1       Background of the Study     –           –           –           –           –           –           1

1.2       Statement of the Problem     –           –           –           –           –           –           8

1.3       Purpose of the Study            –           –           –           –           –           –           9

1.4       Research Questions –           –           –           –           –           –           –           9

1.5       Research Hypotheses            –           –           –           –           –           –           10

1.6       Significance of the Study      –           –           –           –           –           –           10

1.7       Scope and Delimitation of the Study           –           –           –           –           12

1.8       Operational Definition of Terms     –           –           –           –           –           12







3.0       Introduction   –           –           –           –           –           –           –           –           41

3.1       Design of the Study   –           –           –           –           –           –           –           41

3.2       Population of the Study        –           –           –           –           –           –           42

3.3       Sample and Sampling Techniques –           –           –           –           –           43

3.4       Instrument for Data Collection       –           –           –           –           –           44

3.5       Validation of the Instrument           –           –           –           –           –           44

3.6       Reliability of the Instrument           –           –           –           –           –           45

3.7       Methods of Data Analysis    –           –           –           –           –           –           47



4.0       Introduction   –           –           –           –           –           –           –           –           48

4.1       Results            –           –           –           –           –           –           –           –           48

4.2       Hypotheses Testing   –           –           –           –           –           –           –           50

4.3       Discussion of the Findings   –           –           –           –           –           –           52




5.1       Summary of the Findings     –           –           –           –           –           –           55

5.2       Conclusion     –           –           –           –           –           –           –           –           56

5.3        Recommendation     –           –           –           –           –           –           –           56

5.4       Suggestions for Further Studies      –           –           –           –           –           57

REFERENCE           –           –           –           –           –           –           –           58

APPENDIX I –           –           –           –           –           –           –           –           60

APPENDIX 2 –           –           –           –           –           –           –           –           61

APPENDIX 3 –           –           –           –           –           –           –           –           67        APPENDIX 4 –            –           –           –           –           –           –           –           69









1.1       Background of the Study

In the economic development of any nation, education of its citizenry has been the bedrock of national development since it helps in equipping students with the requisite knowledge, attitude, competencies, and skills useful for the nation as a whole in terms of employment opportunities for the youth and a substantial impact on the society (Okoro, 2021). Education has been the instrument for economic empowerment and development of sustainable economy and plays rudimentary role in our society. One of the national educational goals is the acquisition of appropriate skills and development of mental, physical and social abilities and competencies as equipment for the individual to live and contribute to the development of the society (FRN, 2013).   The focus of teaching methods in Nigeria most especially of science now has been teaching that allows the interest and needs of students to be the center of teaching and learning. One of the popular teaching methods which makes this basic aim of education possible to reach in this modern era is the use of innovative teaching method.

Science has been regarded as the bedrock upon which the modern day technological breakthrough is built. Countries all over the world, especially the developing ones like Nigeria, are striving hard to develop technologically and scientifically. Nwagbo in Usman (2010) explained science as an intellectual activity carried out by humans, designed to discover information about the natural world in which we live and to discover the ways in which this information can be organized to benefit human race. According to Feynman (2011), science has become such an indispensable tool that no nation, developed or developing, wishing to progress in socio-economic sphere will afford to relegate the learning of science in schools to the background. The Federal Republic of Nigeria (FRN) in its National Policy on Education (FME, 2014) identified the goals of science education to include:

  1. Service studies in technology and the cause of technological advancement
  2. Acquisition of knowledge, skills, inquiry and rational mind for conduct of good life.
  • Produce scientist for national development
  1. Understanding of the physical world, the forms and conduct of life and
  2. Provide knowledge and understanding of the complexity of the physical world, the forms and conduct of life.

Science comprises the basic disciplines such as biology, chemistry, physics and mathematics. The Federal Ministry of Education (FME, 2013) identified biology among the core-science subjects offered at the Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) level, Ramalingam, (2003) defined biology as one of the branches of science that involves the study of living things ranging from microscopic cellular molecules to the biosphere which encompasses the earth surface.

Importance of biology as highlighted by Maduabum (2009) is stated as follows:

  1. Understanding and appreciating life,
  2. Bringing into focus the need to maintain good health,
  • Helping individuals to understand the parts of his/her body and their functions,
  1. Enabling one to question superstition due to sustained interest arising from comprehension of the cause of events,
  2. Promoting the individual for choice of careers,
  3. To inculcate in the individual scientific skills and attitudes in his approach to personal and societal problem,
  • Impart factual knowledge and stimulate scientific reflective thinking so as to produce a better informed individual.

Despite the emphasis on innovative approach to the teaching of science in general and biology in particular for acquisition of science process and problem-solving skills, biology is still taught by traditional methods (Thomas, 2019). The poor methods of teaching and learning of biology constitute a problem in the learners’ acquisition of functional knowledge, science process skills and development of ability to solve problem.

In solving this problem, education seek more reliable and effective methods of instruction for students, so as to produce in learner skills that will enable them to compete successfully in technological and scientific dominated society. In describing a new vision for teacher educator, Long (2018) suggest that teachers will need to be flexible, dynamic, thoughtful and able to work with change. He further suggested the hallmark of competent teachers will be the ability to reflect on teaching strategies as to meet the needs of their students. These innovative strategies have not been employed when compared with the traditional method preponderantly employed by science teachers in Nigeria (Thomas, 2019). He further reiterated that the state of biology teaching in our schools has consistently been of concern as teachers could not properly apply this innovative teaching strategy in some areas in biology.

Biology is one of the core science subjects offered in senior secondary school in Nigeria. Biology gives students a glimpse of scientific exploration and opportunity that are needed for discovering. Biology have contributed immensely towards improved quality of human life by providing information on drug abuse, biotechnology, genetic engineering and molecular biology. Various researchers have observed that there is an increasing yearly enrolment in senor secondary school examination in biology, but each year candidate achieve poorly in the examination (Nnorom, 2015; Okoye, 2010).

Moreover, to improve the performance of students in science especially biology, a more engaging teaching method should be employed by teachers. Teaching methods refers to the general principle, pedagogy and management techniques used for classroom instruction (Kolawole, 2017). They include activity-based method, discussion method, collaborative, expository, project method, problem based solving technique among others. Researchers have shown that most teachers continue to use ineffective and teacher centered method such as conventional method in teaching (Chukwuemeka, 2016; Ogbu, 2011). Conventional method of teaching refers to teaching using chalk and board for teachers, pen and paper for students (Nnorom, 2015). Teaching should be based on the student’s previous knowledge and connection between the experience of student and biological concept (Chukwuemeka, 2016). Berkeley (2015) noted that the teacher centered method does not promote skill acquisition, objectivity and critical thinking ability among students. There is the need for more activity oriented, students centered and innovative method that can develop in the students science process skills, which include problem based solving method and discussion method which are the striking points in which the researcher tends to identified the differences that exists between them for effective teaching and learning of biology as a science subject. This is why this research is undertaking to compare the effects of innovative strategies such as (Activity-based strategy and Discussion method) of teaching biology among secondary school students.

On one hand, activity-based strategy is innovative strategy of teaching that provides right environment to create educational settings where the student work together and learn by doing, learning by playing , learning by enjoying, learning by co-operation , learning by activity and learning without stress.

According to Churchil (2013) activity-based learning is a learning method in which students are engaged in the learning processes. In Activity-based learning (ABL) teaching method, in the words of Harfield, Davies, Hede, Panko Kenley (2017) “students actively participate in the learning experience rather than sit as passive listeners”. Harfield, Davies, Hede, Panko and Kenley (2017) by quoting Churchil (2013) say that active learning method is different from traditional method of teaching on two points. First, active role of students and second, collaboration among students. In ABL the learner examines learning requirements and thinks how to solve a problem in hand. The students do not learn about the content. Rather they learn about the process to solve the problem. As they go towards the solution of the problem, they also learn about the content (Churchill 2013). Effective teaching –learning process is not possible without students‟ motivation. Hake (2018) argues that students‟ motivation by engaging them in interactive- activities is an effective and useful method for teaching complex concepts.

The National Knowledge Commission (NKC, 2019) posits that the activity- based teaching method used in Basic Science provided students with the hope of solving practical problems using their resources. Studies have shown that students taught through the activity-based approach can retain the subject much longer than those taught without (Ozen & Ergenekon, 2011). Several researchers (Shah & Rahat, 2014; Bansal & Kumar, 2012; Choo, 2007) have highlighted the enormous benefits of using activity-based teaching methods in teaching subject matter of Basic Science. The services posited include; activity-based teaching helps students achieve desired goals set by teachers for concepts learned in social studies, encourages students to learn independently, and motivates them to learn to foster higher-order skills and creative thinking.

On other hand, discussion strategy is a technique in which a teacher leads or guides the students in groups towards expressing opinions and ideas with the view to identifying and solving problems collectively. The role of the teacher in this technique is that of a facilitator. The teacher presents the lesson topics to the learners and also creates enabling environment for them.

According to Rahman, Khalil, Jumani, Muhammad, Malik and Sharif (2016), discussion method is a teaching method that includes questioning which is similar to testing. A teacher may ask a series of question to collect information of what students have learned and what needs to be taught. Testing is another application of questioning. A teacher tests the student on what was previously taught in order to identify if a student has learned in order to identify if a student has learned in the material.  Rahman, et’al (2016) explained that discussion works on the principles that the knowledge and idea of several people are more likely to find solution or answers to specific problem or topics. Discussion enhances learning by giving the learners room to develop their communicating skills, mental skills such as critical thinking, reflective thinking and evaluating diverse opinion (Efe, 2017). The role of the teacher is that of a facilitator. The teacher encourages the learner to discover things for themselves this could increase the retention ability of students towards certain concepts.

Gender is one of the factors that might affect students’ achievement in biology problem solving. Gender is defined by Dike and Abimbola (2017) as a psychological term describing behaviour and attributes expected of individuals on the basis of being born either a male or a female. Keller (2016) writing on the nature of gender observed that, it is a cultural construct developed by society to distinguish the roles, behaviours, mental and emotional characteristics between male and female. Dike and Abimbola (2017) asserted that gender is obvious from birth and children are socialized very early into appropriate sex-typed-occupations. Hence gender differential valuation of male and female has been viewed as an integral part of the socialization process and the development of the adult male and female personalities.

However, Awoniyi (2011) found out that female students perform better than male counterpart in science. While Okeke (2011) noted that there is no significance difference in the achievement score of male and female students in both chemistry and biology examinations. This shows a contradiction in the findings of researchers on science achievement. Jegede & Fatoke (2014) pointed out that there is no gender difference in the achievement of male and female students in science subjects; however, a good teaching strategy may be gender friendly to ensure that both boys and girls benefit equally from the teaching strategy. Therefore there is need to determine the effect of problem-solving and discussion teaching method on student’s achievement in biology in senior secondary schools in Pankshin Local Government Area of Plateau State.

This study is therefore an attempt to fill the foregoing gaps mentioned above in the use of traditional methods in science teaching. In other words, the paradigm shift away from teaching to an emphasis on learning is to encourage power to be moved from the teacher to the student (Mokiwa 2014). This development is in contrast to traditional forms of teaching in which an educator lectures, or otherwise relays information to students who are expected to absorb what they are told. In activity-based learning, an educator serves the function of a facilitator, assisting students through the learning process, and providing them with guidance. Various actions and tasks can be used in this type of programme, allowing students to become directly involved in the learning process rather than remaining passive. This is often accomplished through the creation of different activities and projects that students work on as they learn. 

It is upon this background that the researchers deems it fit to investigate into the effects of activity-based teaching strategy and discussion method of teaching on secondary school student’s performance in Biology in Pankshin Area Directorate of Education.

1.2       Statement of the Problem

The yearning for quality and effective instruction delivery has been a long standing objective of science education. The emerging concern for the poor achievement of students in school science and its resultant consequence on the production and development of future scientist, engineers and technologies had led to the search for instructional strategies that promote effective and improved science learning. Consequently, biology as a science instruction has become a focus of research for two or more decades. Biology knowledge is vast; its scope in each discipline is on the increase. Science educators specifically biology teachers have come to realize that trying to teach biology as a list of facts to be memorized rather than understood is a futile exercise.

It was observed that there is a dearth of empirical studies focusing on instructional strategies that can enhance teaching and learning of concepts in science. Academic achievement of students in science has been persistently low, biology inclusive WAEC Examiners’ reports indicate that students are not favourably disposed towards scientific and skillful concepts biology. The report identified drawing of poor biology diagrams, poor understanding of biology concepts and poor performance on questions related to biology drawings, genetics etc as candidate’s weakness in biology, invariably leading to their poor achievement in the subject. The need to redress this alarming academic problem necessitated exploring the effects of activity-based teaching strategy and discussion method on students’ achievement in biology.

1.3       Purpose of the Study

The primary purpose of this study is a comparative study on the effects of activity-based teaching strategy and discussion teaching method on secondary school student’s academic performance in biology in Pankshin Area Directorate of Education. Specifically, the study intends to ascertain the:

  1. Influence of teaching method on the achievement of students in Biology.
  2. Effects of activity-based teaching strategy on performance of students in Biology.
  3. Effect of discussion method of teaching on the performance of students in Biology.

1.4       Research Questions

The following research questions guided the study:

  1. Is there a difference in the mean achievement scores of students taught Biology using activity-based teaching strategy and those taught using discussion method?
  2. What is the effect of activity-based teaching strategy on performance of students in Biology?
  3. What is the effect of discussion method of teaching on the performance of students in Biology?

1.5       Research Hypotheses

The following hypotheses guided the conduct of the study:

HO1: There is no statistically significant difference in the mean achievement scores of students taught Biology using activity-based teaching strategy and those taught using discussion method.

HO2: There is no statistically significance difference in the mean achievement scores of male and female students taught Biology using activity-based teaching strategy and discussion teaching methods.

HO3: There is no statistically significant interaction of gender and teaching methods on student’s achievement in Biology.

1.6       Significance of the Study

This study is built on the framework that the findings will have both practical and theoretical significance. The study will benefit students, teachers, school administrators, curriculum planners and the examination bodies into a better understanding of the impact of activity-based teaching strategy on students’ academic performance and retention in biology. It will reflect on both positive and negative impacts of this innovative teaching strategy on students’ academic attainment.

The findings of the study will benefit the students because it will enable them to use activity-based learning approach and discussion method for problem solving, learning in higher education, succeeding in their future careers, and living their daily lives. It will also enable the students to construct mental models that will allow for higher-order performance such as applied problem solving and transfer of information and skills.

The findings of the study would inform Biology teachers on the effectiveness of activity-based learning and discussion method as well as their striking differences and qualities, thereby shaping their teaching strategies from traditional teacher-learner interaction to hands-on activities to promote active students participation.

The study will instill in the school administrators body of knowledge on the importance of innovative strategies (activity-based learning approach and discussion method of teaching) which will enable them to organized workshop/seminars for biology teachers for effective implementation of these approaches of learning strategy.

Curriculum planners would utilize the information from the findings of the study in curriculum planning. The information could help the curriculum planners to determine the adequacy of activity-based teaching strategy aspect of senior secondary biology curriculum.

Finally, this study will benefit examination bodies on how to define their roles in guiding and given insight to contemporary reading contents so as to help students perform better in their academic pursuit.


1.7       Scope and Delimitation of the Study

The study was carried out in Pankshin Area Directorate of Education in Plateau state. The zone was used on the fact that literature search by the researcher revealed that no such study has been carried out in this area. Senior secondary school class two students (SS 2) will be used in the study. The choice of the population was based on the fact that the state and the zone in particular is educational less developed as reflected on the students’ WAEC and NECO achievement in biology in the background of the study.

The problem investigated in this study will be restricted to basic biology concepts covering topics found in the biology curriculum. The sub-sections of biology to be covered in this research study are as follows:

  1. Supporting tissues in plants.
  2. Feeding mechanisms in some animals

The study will also be limited to the effects of activity-based teaching strategy and discussion teaching method on secondary school student’s academic performance in biology.

1.8       Operational Definition of Terms

Terms that are related to the study are defined below in order to remove somatic ambiguity in their usage.

Comparative: It refers to measurement or judgment by estimating the similarity or dissimilarity between one thing and another.

Effects: It simply refers to a change which is a result or consequence of an action or other cause. In this study, it implies to the striking changes observed among Biology students when taught using activity-based teaching strategy and discussion teaching method.

Activity-Based Teaching Strategy: It refers to a method that is adopted by a teacher to emphasize his or her technique of teaching through action in which the learners take interest comprehensively and realize effective learning practices. In this study, it refers to a method employed by biology teachers in teaching and learning of biology in secondary schools.

Discussion teaching method:  It refers to varieties of forums for open-ended, collaborative exchange of ideas among a teacher and students or among students for the purpose of furthering students thinking, learning, problem solving, understanding, or literary appreciation.

Teaching: It refers to the concerted sharing of knowledge and experience, which is usually organized within a discipline and, more generally, the provision of stimulus to the psychological and intellectual growth of a person by another person or artifact. In this research, teaching is considered as the act of imparting biology instructions via activity based teaching strategy and discussion teaching method to the learners in the classroom situation.

Teaching method: It refers to the principles and strategies used by teachers to enable student learning.

Student: Is something or someone that is consider to learning. In this research, it refers to a secondary school biology learner.

Students’ academic performance: It refers to the extent to which a learner has attained their short or long-term educational goals. In this study, it refers to those goals that have been attained by biology students through the use of activity-based teaching strategy and discussion teaching method.

Senior secondary schools: It refers to school for pupils between the ages of 11 or 12 and 17 or 18 that student attend in the three highest classes before college. In this research, it refers to the level of education use by the researchers to effectively impart biology concepts through the use of activity-based teaching strategy and discussion teaching method.

Biology: It simply refers to the science that studies life, and living things, and the evolution of life. In this research, it refers to the foundational aspect of science education that deals with the impartation of the basic knowledge needed to understand science by senior secondary school students.

  • Format: ms-word (doc)
  • Chapter 1 to 5
  • With abstract reference and questionnaire
  • Preview Table of contents, abstract and chapter 1 below

₦ 3,000

This Complete Project Material is Available for Instant Download Immediately After Payment of ₦3000.



Bank Name: United Bank of Africa (UBA)
Account Name: chianen kenter
Account Number: 2056899630
Account Type: savings
Amount: ₦3000