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1.1 BACKGROUND OF STUDY
Examination malpractice is the major clog on the wheel of the educational system in Nigeria. Maduemezia (2003) reported that the first examination malpractice in Nigeria occurred in 1914 during the Senior Cambridge Local Examination papers which were leaked before the scheduled date of examination. Thus, examination malpractice which started at a low trend became more pronounced in 1970, involving persons other than the candidates. Since then examination malpractice became more advanced and sophisticated. However, 1977 marked a watershed in the history of examination malpractice as there was an outcry in Nigeria on the credibility of West African Examination Council (WAEC), which was the only organ saddled with the responsibility of conducting public examination in Nigeria. Consequently, a Judicial Commission of enquiry headed by Justice Sogbetun was set up to look into the affairs of the WAEC in relation to the problems of efficient conduct of examinations and prompt release of results. The report acknowledged the excessive workload of WAEC and recommended reduction of its workload by establishing other examination bodies to take over some of its examinations.
Examination is defined as a formal test of one's knowledge or ability in a particular subject especially by means of answering questions or practical exercises. Therefore, it is through examination that students are evaluated or tested to find out the quality of knowledge they have acquired within a specific period. Thus, examination could be either internal, external, oral, written or both. Continuous assessment scores, terminal, semester, annual or promotion examinations are examples of internal examinations. (Benard,1988). The external (public) examinations include Common Entrance Examinations for admission into Secondary Schools, School Certificate Examinations which are conducted by West African Examination Council (WAEC), National Examination Council (NECO). The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) now conduct the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).
The National Teachers' Institute (NTI), National Business and Technical Examination Board (NABTEB) conduct examinations for teachers and technicians respectively. Although students' performance in examination may not be the true reflection of their ability, till date however, examination still remains the best tool for an objective assessment and evaluation of what a learner has achieved after a period of schooling/training. In fact, it is one of the most reliable indicators used to determine the extent of students' performance in a given training.
According to Awanbor (2004) therefore, defined examination malpractice as an illegal act committed by a single student or in collaboration with others like fellow students, parents, teachers, supervisors, invigilators, computer operators or secretarial staff and anybody or group of people before, during, or after examination in order to obtain undeserved marks or grades. The study in this regard wishes to determine the effect of examination malpractice on the educational system
1.2 STATEMENT OF RESEARCH PROBLEM
The education system in Nigeria has being under continuous revolution with several infrastructural development in most secondary and tertiary institution in Nigeria but the issue of examination malpractice has become a clog on the wheels of the growth and development of the educational system in Nigeria. Some of the causes of examination malpractice include; poor socio-economic background of students, peer group, the fear of failure factor and lack of confidence among students. Secondly there have been several studies on examination malpractice but not even a single study has been carried out on the effect of examination malpractice on the educational system in Nigeria; hence a gap in the literature.
1.3 AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF STUDY
The main aim of the research work is to examine the effect of examination malpractice on the education system in Nigeria. Other specific objectives of the study include:
1. To determine the effect of examination malpractices on the academic achievement of secondary school students in Nigeria
2. To determine the causes of examination malpractices in secondary schools and tertiary institutions in Nigeria
3. To investigate on the factors affecting student academic performance in secondary school and tertiary institutions
4. To proffer solution to above stated problems
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTION
The study came up with research questions so as to be able to ascertain the above stated objectives of the study. The research questions for the study are stated below as follows:
1. What is the effect of examination malpractices on the academic achievement of secondary school students in Nigeria?
5. What are the causes of examination malpractices in secondary schools and tertiary institutions in Nigeria?
2. What are the factors affecting student academic performance in both secondary school and tertiary institutions?
1.5 STATEMENT OF RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H0: Examination malpractice has no significant effect on the educational system in Nigeria.
H1: Examination malpractice has significant effect on the educational system in Nigeria
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY
The study on the effect of examination malpractice on the educational system in Nigeria will be of immense benefit to the entire secondary schools in Nigeria, the state and the federal government and other researchers that wishes to carry out similar research on the above topic as the findings from the study will educate the government on the effect of examination malpractice on the educational system in Nigeria, the study will also reveal the causes and effect and solution to examination malpractice in the Nigeria educational system
1.7 SCOPE OF STUDY
The study on the effect of examination malpractice on the educational system in Nigeria is limited to secondary schools in Benue state. The study will cover the effect of examination malpractice on the educational system in Nigeria and also the causes and effect and solution to examination malpractice in the Nigeria educational system
1.8 LIMIATION OF STUDY
Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work
1.9 DEFINITATION OF TERMS
Malpractices: It is the action of any person usually not in conformity with laid down rules and regulations whether internal or external.
Local Government Area: A group of towns and villages delimited as a result of the Local Government Edict No 13 of 1976.
Educators: As used here implies school principals, administrators and teachers sampled.
WAEC: West African Examinations Council
NECO: National Examination Council
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