The effects of market- led textbooks policy on teaching and learning biology in secondary schools in Tanzania: acase of Mbulu District

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Date
2012
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Publisher
University of Dar es Salaam
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of market- led textbooks policy on teaching and learning biology in selected secondary schools in Mbulu district. The research aimed at: assessing characteristics of biology teaching and learning in context of the implementation of textbooks commercialization policy; and examining teachers’ and students’ perception on the relevance of the commercially produced biology textbooks in teaching and learning. Finally, identifying the constraints faced by teachers and students in using commercially produced and distributed biology textbooks. This study utilized qualitative research approach and employed a case study design. The sample comprised of 84 respondents from both government and private secondary schools. Data were collected through interview with 20 biology teachers and physical administration of questionnaires to 64 students. Also observations and documentary review were used to supplement information collected though interview and questionnaires. Data collected at one point of time from different respondents were organized into patterns that emerged during the analysis. Data were contently analyzed and some direct quotations were reported. Findings revealed that teaching and learning of biology subject in the context of textbooks commercialization policy were characterized by inclusion of multiple textbooks which contain simplified contents that attract students to spend most of their time. Lecture and group discussion were dominant teaching and learning strategies. Commercially produced biology textbooks save teachers time for teaching as it is used as source of notes and questions. Teachers as opposed to students perceived that biology textbooks do not matched with the content evaluated by NECTA. Teachers and students perceived that commercially produced biology textbooks do not cover the up-to-date concepts and principles; poor quality of illustration, oversimplified contents and complex language. Major constraints were unaffordable high price of textbooks in the market; students were confused by use of multiple textbooks and shortage of biology textbooks in schools. It was concluded that textbooks need to involve depth contents according to the current syllabus. Instructional strategy need to be learner- centered and production of new biology textbooks need to cover up- to- date contents, quality illustration and user friend languages to ensure effective provision of educational goals for improvement of students’ performance. The study recommended that ministry of education and TIE to produce textbooks which are good in quality according to syllabus.
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Keywords
Effects of market, - led textbooks policy, teaching and learning biology, secondary schools in Tanzania, Mbulu District
Citation
Patrice, P V(2012),The effects of market- led textbooks policy on teaching and learning biology in secondary schools in Tanzania: acase of Mbulu District , master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Available at()