1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The role of science and technology in a nation’s development can not be over-emphasized. Science and Technology have become the basic tools for the development of modern society; a measure of the development of a nation can be ascertained from the quantity and quality of its basic and applied scientific output J.C. Amazigo (2005).
The development of a nation depends largely on the level of scientific and technological literacy (Ivowi 1993, Okebukola 1999 and Ukpene (2005). Science is indispensable to the technological development of any nation. According to Okecha (1993), science has helped in the development of Modern technology through the application of its principles to Modern invention.
A nation that neither develops a scientifically literate citizenry nor attracts its best minds to the basic sciences and technology is doomed to remain underdeveloped no matter its natural resources. Any nation with ambitions for development must have its home grown expertise in science and technology.
Nigeria’s policy makers and scientific and technological communities appear to understand and may be accept these basic axioms but they have not taken adequate evolutionary steps to identify, solve and address the major factors militating against the teaching and learning of Science and Technology.
For about two decades now, it had become clear that Nigeria’s educational system had been deficient in the production of adequate number of competent man power in science and technology to man Nigeria schools, colleges, universities and industries.
Students’ performance in sciences in both Junior School certificate examination (JSCE) and senior school certificate examination (SSCE) results for more than 20 years have persistently been poor in public examinations conducted by examination bodies like NECO, WAEC, NABTEB and JAMB.
A number of teaching methods have been used by science and technology teachers in the past. Such methods as discussion, questioning, guided discovery, exposition, etc. studies have shown that these methods have not yet yielded expected results (Abimbola and Okebukola 1998 and 2001, Inomiesa and Unuero 2003, Ukpene 2004 and WAEC Chief Examiners’ report 1998, 1991, 2002 and 2003.
Efforts must be made by the science teachers and technology teachers to make students acquire meaningful learning in science and technology by making the teaching of science and technology subjects exciting, purposeful and participatory. This calls for the use of an instructional method that would make students develop adequate assimilation and understanding of the concept taught and acquire process skills in science and technology