Relationship between Problem Solving Approaches and Academic Performance: A Case of Kakamega Municipality, Kenya

Collins K. Matemba, Jane Awinja, Kenneth O. Otieno

Abstract


The problem of poor performance of students in public secondary schools in the national examination continues unabated despite numerous efforts and resources put into education development. The study sought to determine the relationship between problem solving approach and academic performance and to establish gender differences in the problem solving approaches among secondary school students in Kakamega Municipality. Correlation research design was adopted for the study. Using stratified sampling, six schools consisting of one boys school, one girls school, three public co-educational schools and one private co-educational school were sampled. Proportionate and simple random sampling was used to select a total of 200 students comprising of 113 boys and 87 girls. Questionnaires, observation check lists and Focus Group discussions were used to collect data. Quantitative data collected in the field was analysed using descriptive and inferential statistics, while qualitative data from Focus Group Discussion was analysed qualitatively. The differences between groups on studied variables were tested using t-test while correlation was used to test the null hypothesises at a significance level of .05. There was no significant relationship between problem solving approaches and academic performance while gender had no affect on problem solving. It was recommended that counsellors and secondary school teachers should train students in positive problem solving skills and an ideal environment should be created for students to acquire positive problem solving skills. 


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ijhrs.v4i4.6499

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