FACTORS INFLUENCING SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS' ATTITUDE TOWARDS THE STUDY OF PHYSICS IN IMENTI SOUTH DISTRICT, KENYA
Mbaabu, F. N.; Gatumu, H. N. and Kinai, T.
Journal Title:Journal of Research in Education and Society
The study was conducted in January and February 2011. It aimed at investigating the factors that were considered to influence students' attitude towards the study of Physics in secondary schools in Imenti South District, Kenya. The factors under consideration were perceived adequacy of physics laboratory equipment, perceived teacher competence, the influence of calculations in the physics curriculum and sex differences in students' attitude. The study sample consisted of 120 students. These were drawn from four secondary schools sampled through stratified random technique. Descriptive survey design was used. Two instruments were used for data collection. These were a students' questionnaire and a laboratory equipment checklist. The questionnaire was administered to the students at one sitting in each of the schools. The observation checklist was filled by the laboratory assistant in each of the schools. Each of the independent variables had its items scored separately. A single attitude score was thus obtained for each attitudinal object per student. The research findings revealed that students have a positive attitude towards physics, perceive the physics' teachers as competent and they perceive the physics laboratories as well equipped. It was recommended among others that teachers teaching physics and mathematics should work in consultation with each other so as to help the students in appreciating the role of mathematics in physics and girls should be helped to interact with ladies who have excelled in physics so as to boost their attitude towards physics.