Faculty: Education
Department: Science Education


Uwaleke, C.C;
Okoli, J.N;


The study investigated the effect of laboratory method on secondary school students’ acquisition of production skills and interest in chemistry. It was guided by five research questions and five null hypotheses. A quasi-experimental research design was adopted, specifically thepretestposttestnon-equivalent control group design. The study was carried out in Okigwe Education Zone II of Imo State. The population of the study consisted of 1766 senior secondary year two (SS2) chemistry students from 40 government owned schools in the zone. The sample size was made up of 98 SS2 students drown from two schools using multistage sampling. Modified Chemistry Production Skills Rating Scale (MCPS-RS) and Students’ Chemistry Interest Scale (SCIS) adapted from instrumentdeveloped by Enright and Powers (1987) and Vocational Interest Inventory developed by Bakare (1977) respectively were used for data collection. Both MCPS-RS and SCIS were validated by experts; twoin measurement and evaluation, two in science education and two experienced chemistry teachers. A trial testing of the instruments was conductedusing 32 SS2Chemistry students and from the data collected, the reliability coefficient was obtained. The MCPS-RS and SCIS had a reliability coefficient of 0.76 and 0.82 respectively using Cronbach alpha.The regular chemistry teachers in each of the schools who were properly trained on the use of laboratory method were involved in the teaching. The students in the experimental group were taught using the laboratory method while the students in the control group were taught using the conventional lecture method. The instruments were administered as pretest and posttest. Data obtained were analyzed using mean and standard deviation to answer the research questions while analysis of covariance was used to test the null hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. The findings of the study revealed that: There is a significant difference between the mean production skills acquisition scores of students taught how to producebleach, hard soap, liquid soap and candle using laboratory and conventional methods,in favour of laboratory method group; students exposed to laboratory method develop more interest in chemistry than those taught with conventional lecture method. The study concludes that the use of laboratory method enhances students’ acquisition of production skills and interest in chemistry. It was recommended among others that:teachers of chemistry should teach chemistry with laboratory method because this will help to enhance students’ acquisition of production skills, and self-relianceafter their secondary education; Pre-service teachers should be exposedto the use of laboratory method in their chemistry method class so that they will be able to use them in future as in-service chemistry teachers.

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