Influence of perceptual learning style preferences and self -efficacy on mathematics achievement among secondary school students in Nyamira North Sub-County, Kenya
Kwamboka, Mose Everlyne
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This study was undertaken to find out how perceptual learning styles and self-efficacy influence mathematics achievement among secondary school students in Nyamira North sub-County. The research problem addressed in this study was to find a solution towards secondary school students' poor mathematics achievement in Nyamira North District. Visual, auditory, and kinaesthetic learning styles, which are in the category of perceptual learning style, were selected because they represent the primary means of receiving information through one's senses before interpretation. Self-efficacy and how it influences mathematics achievement was investigated. Descriptive and correlational research designs were adopted in this study. The population was 1981 students, 69 mathematics teachers, and 38 schools. Quantitative data were collected from 311 (186 girls and 125 boys) form three students from 26 schools of Nyamira North sub-County. Purposive sampling was used to sample Nyamira North sub-County as the location of study. Since schools in the sub-county are of different groups, stratified sampling was used for these various groups. Simple random sampling was used within sub-groups. Students who. were involved in the study were obtained through systematic sampling. The study was based on Bandura's Social Cognitive Theory (1977) and Neil Fleming's Visual, Auditory, and Kinaesthetic (VAK) Theory (1995). Learning styles test, selfefficacy questionnaire, and document analyses were the instruments of data collection. Descriptive statistics used ihcluded measures of central tendencies, distributions, and percentages. Piloting was conducted before the actual study in two secondary schools. Split-half technique was used to determine reliability of the instruments which found a correlation coefficient of 0.80. Data collected were coded and analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software. The results indicated a significant variability in learning style preference at 0.05, it also revealed that learning styles have no contribution towards the performance of mathematics hence the null hypothesis was accepted. Self-efficacy has an influence on mathematics achievement hence the null hypothesis was rejected. The findings also indicated that self-efficacy was a major predictor of mathematics achievement in secondary schools since 90.4% of the variance in mathematics achievement was explained by self-efficacy. The result of the findings may be significant to teachers, students, the Ministry of Education and scholars. It is expected that the findings of this study may serve as a basis for making recommendations on how to improve mathematics achievement and learning in secondary schools. The study recommends further research to explore and quantify effects of other variables such as teaching strategies, classroom practices, and assessment practices on mathematics achievement.