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In Nigeria today as more than ever before there is greater demand for highly creative and innovative teachers who can lead the students onto paths of meaningful learning. An effective and efficient teacher is also one of the factors that will contribute to effective instruction in education. The achievement of effective and efficient teaching and learning in schools has been one of the perennial problems in education. Other problems include the nature of the curriculum, controversial nature of the subjects and poor methods of instruction.

One of such subjects that is difficult to teach is religious studies. Religious studies before lay emphasis on factual examination oriented approach and religious dogmas. Today, it has become a matter of investigation and experimental rather than indoctrinations. Several factors have been attributed to the controversial nature of the subject. They include:

- The nature of the subject

- Confusion arising from the values of the theological idea

- Theological values that characterized the contemporary thought about religious (Cox 1966),

- The scope, meaning and concept of religious studies (Wester Hoff 1978).

According to WesterHoff (1978), though the name Religious Studies has been used most frequently, there is no complete or consistent agreement on what the word mean or what it refers to. Today, there is less concurrence than ever before.

In schools today, there are still different terminologies for the subject. Some prefer Religious Studies. In some cases they are used interchangeably. Scott (1980) says that no consensus exists today on the nature, scope and role of Religious Studies. The above named scholar believe that current search to identify revolves around different usage of key terms like Religious Education, Religious Knowledge Religious and Moral Instruction. Other problem is that since Religion deals with values, judgments and feelings, everyone in the society will agree with it. The implications of the above is that the controversial nature of the subject, lack of consistent linguistic discourse and the unstable pattern of conversation currently going on in the field have contributed to making the subject difficult and technical.

Teague (1984) also speaks on the poor methods of communicating/teaching the subject. During the National Conference of the National Association of Bible Knowledge Teachers of Nigeria (NABKTN) held at Bauchi State Polytechnic in 1989, it was revealed that there had been a serious reduction in the enrolment of students in the subject at secondary schools level and tertiary institution of learning. A survey carried out at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile- Ife (1995-2006) also revealed the same low enrolment as is shown in table 1. Other findings revealed that religious thinking among individual student is confusing and inarticulate. It was also found that simple lessons taught were not being retained for a long time by students (Sofowora 1994). Teague (1984) shows that the serious problem facing the teaching of the subject is lack of modern relevant instructional materials and textbooks.

The importance of modern technologies in Religious Studies cannot be under estimated. The application of relevant and modern technologies may help to solve some of the identified problems faced in the effective teaching of the subject. It is therefore an age long belief in Educational Technology that modern technologies are essential for effective and efficient teaching and learning. However, Sofowora (2002) shows that not all media materials that are available are technically suitable for use in teaching. He emphasized the need for training teachers in the art and craft of design selection production and use of appropriate needs. The required skills in the area mentioned above can only be acquired through Educational  Technology. One of the major concerns of Educational Technology is the quest for effective instruction which is reflected in its definition. The United State Commission in Instructional Technology (1970) described Educational Technology as: the systematic way of designing, carrying out and evaluating the total process of learning and teaching in terms of specific objectives based on research in human learning and communication, by employing a combination of human and non human resources to bring about effective instruction (p. 5).

Ogunmilade (1984) stated that Educational Technology can help to rectify the imbalance in the process of teaching and learning. It is with this recognition that the Federal Government established the defunct National Educational Technology Centre, Kaduna that has now metamorphosed into an arm of the National Open University Nigerian Abuja (NOUN).

According to Sofowora (2001) instructional media enhances comprehension, retention and recall. He is also of the opinion that when information is difficult to explain verbally and where specific procedure will need to be performed; the use of instructional media will not only illustrate the teacher’s concept but add emphasis to the essential point, the use of instructional media will not only illustrate the teachers concept but add emphasis to the essential point. Akanbi (2007) explained that children learn in 2 ways orally and visually. Many of them learn more rapidly where oral teaching is linked with visuals or concrete things they can see, touch or handle. Akanbi also further explain that a teacher cannot be certain that his/her verbal description will convey the correct meaning especially if the teacher finds it difficult to compare the concepts being described with those things the students already know. According to the above scholar, this can be corrected if relevant instructional media is used. The implication of all this is that Religious Studies cannot be effectively taught if teacher are not skilled in the art and craft of designing, development and production of education media.

1.2  Statement of Problem

The importance of CRS in the present social, political and religious crisis in Nigeria cannot be over emphasized. Nevertheless, the trend of poor academic achievement among students’ over the years seems to be on the increase. It may be due to teachers’ use of lecture method of teaching which has been the prevalent mode of lesson presentation in secondary schools in Nigeria This method is teacher-centered and does not inspire and motivate students’ interest towards the learning of the subject in senior secondary schools. The students may end up therefore having low interest which could lead to poor achievement in CRS in schools. There appears, to be no available empirical study on the importance of CRS training of secondary school teachers in teaching and learning

1.3  Purpose of the Study

Specifically, the study was designed to;

Determine the effect of CRS on students morale in the society Determine the effect of role-play method on students’ academic achievement in CRS.

Determine the influence of gender on students’ achievement in CRS.

Find out the influence of gender on students interest in CRS.

1.4  Significance of the Study

The study would be beneficial to students, teachers, religious instructors, curriculum planners, educational administrators, researchers and textbook authors.

To students, the study would help to improve their understanding of CRS and thus adjust properly in the society through active participation in the classroom leaning which stimulate their interest and change the negative perceptions they already have in learning CRS and this invariably help them to develop the affective domain of knowledge in secondary schools. They would equally perform better in internal and external examinations without depending on examination malpractice which have been the problem in the educational sectors. This is because the student stands a chance of becoming masters on their own through involvement in different roles in the classroom.

The findings of the study would help teachers to have an insight into the meaning, application and problems of using role play method of teaching and thus change their method when the need arises for proper students’ achievement and interest in CRS in secondary schools. The relevance of effective method in the implementation of Christian religious studies in secondary school would be made known to teachers as they are the chief implementer of planned curriculum of schools. This could be done by teachers observing the students performing their roles and equally identifies the individual’s problem in using the method in the teaching and learning of CRS in secondary schools.

Religious instructors and bodies are not left out as they would understand the best way to educate children in the principles and practice of Christianity which invariably will promote peace and harmony as well as co-existence in the Nigerian society. Curriculum planners or designers would be made to understand curriculum problems that affect the application of effective teaching method like Role-play in the implementation of CRS curriculum in secondary schools

The findings of the study would expose the educational administrators to the importance of conducive environment in teaching and learning and thereby put these environmental conditions such as classroom building, learning materials, quality library etc, in order for proper implementation of Christian Religious Studies curriculum. They would equally be meant to understand the interactional effects of gender and role-play method and thus help teachers to initiate change where appropriate. The findings of the study as well as the concepts, theories and methods would be reference materials for researchers especially those that specialize in Christian Religious Studies. Finally, the textbook authors on education would benefit from the study by updating their knowledge on the techniques and besides disseminate the findings through textbooks they publish.

The larger society would equally benefit from this study. This is because, the effective teaching and learning of CRS will bring desirable change in behaviour of students and this invariably would help to reduce high level of religious intolerance, hatred, killing, conflict, terrorism, militancy, and other insurgences that is ravaging Nigerian society

1.5 research question

1.  How does CRS affects students morale in the society

2.  Does students gender influences students’ achievement in CRS?

3.  Does gender on students interest in CRS?

1.6 Hypotheses

1.  CRS does not significantly influence student’s morale in the society

2.  Gender on students’ does not significantly influence achievement in CRS.

3.  Gender does not significantly influence students interest in CRS.

1.7 delimitation of the study

The study covered co-educational senior secondary schools in Uyo local government area offering CRS.

1.8  Limitation of the study

       It was also difficult to gather materials especially relevant and current information related to the study variables, since the study is not common. This caused scarcity of relevant research materials from local journals, the researcher had to rely greatly on the foreign materials in order to put up this work.

       Another difficulty faced was limited time given to researcher to complete the study. Limited fund was also a constraint to this work.

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