Teachers’ Use of Humor in Teaching and Students’ Rating of Their Effectiveness

Lazarus Ndiku Makewa, Elizabeth Role, Jane Ayiemba Genga


The purpose of this study was to investigate the extent to which teachers use humour in teaching in Migori district, Kenya, and students’ ratings of their teaching effectiveness. Purposive and random sampling procedures were used in the selection of the sample for the study. Students and teachers in 6 secondary schools in Migori District participated in the study. Data was collected using questionnaire. Three hundred and eleven students (159 male and 152 female) responded to the questionnaire designed to be used by students, which surveyed the students’ opinion of their teachers. Thirty-five teachers also responded to the questionnaire that was designed to survey the humour style that is common among them.

In this study, the data collected was analysed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS). Inferential and descriptive statistics were used. The level of significance used in the study was 0.05. The results indicate that the use of humour in teaching is generally good and that there is a significant, moderate relationship between the use of humour and students’ rating of teachers’ effectiveness. The results also indicate that the most commonly used styles of humour among the students are the positive styles of humour (Affiliative humour and Self-enhancing humour).

In conclusion, teachers who use humor in teaching are generally rated effective in terms of motivation, creation of engaging lessons and anxiety reduction in students. The teachers are also rated effective in terms of stimulation of thought and interest in students and fostering of a positive teacher-student relationship.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ije.v3i2.631

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