Challenges facing teachers in setting school based mathematics tests using bloom's taxonomy in secondary schools of Njoro District, Kenya
Nguthiru, Charles Wachiuri
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The purpose of this study was to identify challenges faced by teachers when using Bloom's Taxonomy in setting school based Mathematics tests in secondary schools of Njoro district, Kenya. The objective of the study was to find out whether teachers apply BT in setting school based Mathematics tests and to identify challenges faced by teachers when using the BT in setting the school based Mathematics tests. The assumption of the study was that unless the tests are appropriately set, the assessment and students performance would come into question. The research adopted a descriptive research design. Data was collected using teachers' Mathematics questionnaire, Mathematics BT checklist for tests analysis and an interview schedule for Heads of Mathematics departments. Stratified, purposive and simple random sampling techniques were used to identify schools, teachers and heads of Mathematics departments respectively for the study. The target population was teachers of Mathematics in 44 secondary schools in Njoro district. Sample size comprised of 12 (28%) schools, 36(25%)Mathematics teachers and 12(28%) Heads of Mathematics departments in the district. Secondary data involved the analysis of 2011 end year tests for Form One to Three and pre mock for Form Four classes. Data collected was coded and subjected to SPSS for analysis, representation and interpretation. From the correlation analysis of school based Mathematics tests, it was found out that majority of test questions in secondary schools of Njoro were skewed toward Application (28%) and Analysis (22%) skills of cognitive domain of BT. The study noted that majority of Mathematics teachers in Njoro district secondary schools have not been applying Bloom's Taxonomy concept in setting Mathematics tests. The study revealed Mathematics teachers' ignorance on use of BT concept, weak policies on setting tests and overloaded curriculum as some of the challenges faced by teachers in setting School Based Mathematics Tests using Bloom's Taxonomy. The study is useful to schools administration, Mathematics' department and Ministry of Education in understanding the importance BT and improving students' performance in Mathematics through setting standardized school based Mathematics tests. The researcher recommends among others the establishment and introduction of examination policies guiding preparation and administration of school based tests. The study forms basis for future research in other regions in the country for improved students' performance in Mathematics.