Author: Eze Chinwe Patricia
Department: Vocational Education
Affiliation: Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka

The academic achievement of students in block/bricklaying and concreting in the National Technical Certificate (NTC) Examination for the past eleven years (2000-2010) in the South East Zone of Nigeria is not quite satisfactory as reported by the National Business and Technical Examinations Board (NABTEB). This poor academic achievement of students could be addressed by a change in the teachers’ method of teaching particularly from lecture method to a more activity-based and participatory method such as guided discovery which could enhance students’ participation, mastery and retention of concepts. It was against this background that the present study was carried out to investigate the effect of guided discovery on students’ academic achievement and retention of concepts in block/bricklaying and concreting (BBC) in technical Colleges in Anambra State. To achieve this objective, five research questions and five null hypotheses were raised. In addition, related literatures to the study were reviewed. A quasi experimental research design which utilized non- randomized pre-test, post-test, experimental control group design was employed. The area of the study was Anambra state. The population comprised 192 National Technical Certificate (NTC) II students in the ten technical colleges offering BBC out of which four colleges were purposively selected. Two intact classes of 56 (51 males and 5 females) and 57 (51 males and 6 females) students were assigned to both experimental and control groups respectively. Data were collected using a 65 item multiple choice test called “Block/Brick laying and Concreting Achievement Test (BCAT)”.The BCAT which was used for pre-test, post-test and delayed post-test was validated by five experts from universities and polytechnics. A reliability coefficient of 0.82 was obtained using Kuder Richardson formula 21. Both experimental and control groups were pre-tested and taught by their regular teachers for five weeks using the lesson plans prepared by the researcher. After teaching, a post-test was administered to all the students to find out the achievement level while a delayed post test was administered to find out the retention level of the students after two weeks. The data obtained were analyzed using means, standard deviation and analyses of covariance (ANCOVA) at 0.05 level of significance. The findings revealed that there was a significant difference between the mean achievement and retention scores of the experimental group taught with guided discovery (GD) and that of the control group taught with lecture method in favour of guided discovery. The result also indicated that both high and low achieving students were enhanced in their achievement but the low achieving students performed better. Based on the findings, the researcher recommended among others that BBC teachers should be encouraged to use GD teaching method in addition to lecture method in order to improve students’ academic achievement and retention of concepts. Implications of the study were discussed and suggestions for further research were made.

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