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This study is on strategies for improving low academic performances in English language in secondary school. The total population for the study is 200 staff of selected secondary schools in Igbo Osogbo local government of Osun State. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made up principals, vice principals administration, senior staff and junior staff were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies



1.1Background of the study

The modern trend in education and the complex nature of learning and instruction have made the role of the teachers more challenging. This new role does not just involve the more transmission of information to students but it involves looking at the problems associated with learning and instruction. The National Policy on Education (NPE, 2004) in Nigeria emphasized that our children should be educated properly so that they can acquire skills and competencies that would enable them function well and solve problems in the society. The accomplishment and realization of these important educational goals in Nigeria lies in the new trend in the educational approaches. These new approaches to learning and instruction expose the students to conceptualize and effectively manage their own learning and thus reinforce their learning and transfer their training in practical situations. Despite the new approach to learning and instruction, English language at the Senior Secondary School level in Nigeria has been plagued with poor results and low achievements. Annual results from West African Examinations Council (WAEC) reveal woeful performances from the students who have made enrolment for English language examinations a yearly ritual. It is worrisome to note too that the performance of these students has continued to deteriorate year after year. It is understood that if the situation in English Language remains like this, it will affect both the economic and technological growth of the state. This is because a good mastery of English language is mandatory on all students in order to do well in other secondary school subjects. Students who are handicapped in English language are therefore likely to be handicapped in the acquisition of skills in arts and technological related subjects.


This research as stated above concerns itself with the study of strategies for improving low academic performance in English language by suggesting possible solution to the following questions:

  i) What are the attitude/feelings of the students towards the studying of English language?

 ii)  What account for the decline in performance in the subject (English language)?

iii)   Do they have enough material and human resources for the teaching and learning process?

 iv)  Do they understand the subject very well?

 v)   Does the Senior Secondary School Certificate (SSCE) syllabus have either a positive or a negative effect on the student performance?


Objectives of the study are;

1.   To find out the types of facilities available in the secondary schools for teaching English language.

2.   To identify the methods of teaching used in teaching English language.

3.   To identify the extent to which teachers are motivated to teach English language.

4.   To identify strategies for improving the low academic performance of students in English language.


For the successful completion of the study, the following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher; 

H0: there are no types of facilities available in the secondary schools for teaching English language.

H1: there are types of facilities available in the secondary schools for teaching English language.

H02: there are no methods of teaching used in teaching English language.

H2: there are methods of teaching used in teaching English language.


This research work intends to investigate the student achievement in the subject. The research will be significant in the following ways:

                  i)   The findings of the study will shade light on the nature, contents examination and performance level of the SSCE examination.

                ii)  The findings of the study will contribute meaningfully to knowledge of teaching and learning English language especially with the role of English in the day-to-day communication.

             iii)  The findings of the students will also benefit Ministry of Education in Nigeria by recruiting qualified teachers in order to improve the performance of the students


The scope of the study covers the strategies for improving low academic performance in English language in secondary school. The researcher encounters some constrain which limited the scope of the study;

 a) AVAILABILITY OF RESEARCH MATERIAL: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study     

b) TIME: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.

c) Organizational privacy: Limited Access to the selected auditing firm makes it difficult to get all the necessary and required information concerning the activities. 


Performance: This relates to the execution carried out or putting into effect the task, job or operation.

 Teacher: A professional trained to impart knowledge to pupils/students.

  Assessment: Evaluation or estimation of the nature, value or quality of something or a subject.

 Effectiveness: It is the ability to determine appropriate objectives, that is, the degree at which School’s goals are met within established resources “doing the right thing.”

  Indiscipline: This can be described as a mode of life not in conformation with rule and non-subjection to contain. The term connotes the regulations capable of obstructing the smooth and orderly function of the school system

 Reading: Is the process of receiving and interpreting information encoded in language form via the medium of print.

Writing: Writing is the process by which an author uses his mental ability to put words to paper as well as the result of that process.

 Speech: Expression of or the ability to express thoughts and feelings by articulated sounds.

  Mother Tongue: This is the original and first language of an individual which they acquire from their parents.

  L2: This is language two. This is a second that is learnt as a second language in addition to their mother tongue.

FGN: Acronym for Federal Government of Nigeria.

Curriculum: Curriculum is the subjects comprising a step by step guide of a course of study in a school.


This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows

Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study. Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature. Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.  Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study    

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