Effect of Computer Aided Instruction on Students’ Academic and Gender Achievement in Chemistry among Selected Secondary School Students in Kenya
Julius, Judith K.
Twoli, Nicholas W.
Maundu, John N.
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The role of computers in classroom instruction is gaining prominence in developing countries especially in Kenya for Science subjects, in particular Chemistry subject whose performance has been low. This paper presents a section of a study in Kenya which investigated the effect of Computer Aided Instruction (CAI) on students’ achievement in Chemistry as compared with Conventional Instructional Methods (CIM). This study was prompted by the emergence of IT resources mainly in courtesy of the government and some nongovernmental organization (NGO). The study targeted 15 secondary schools with computer laboratory in Tharaka Nithi County, Kenya. A total comprising of 174 Form Two Chemistry students from Four secondary schools with computer laboratory were purposively sampled. The four schools were randomly assigned to either Experimental or Control groups. The Experimental groups were taught with CAI while Control groups were taught with CIM (Conventional Instructional Methods) on the topics “Atomic structure, Periodic Table and Chemical families” for six weeks. Data was collected using Chemistry Achievement Test (CAT). The CAT was administered before and after treatment (CAI) to both Experimental and Control groups. The content validity of the CAT was checked for by a panel of secondary school Chemistry teachers who were not from the schools under study. The researcher administered the CAT instrument (pre-test and post-test) with the assistance of Chemistry teachers in the sampled schools. Data was analyzed using both descriptive and inferential statistics. The differences between the group means was analyzed using t-test, Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) and Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA). The statistical significance was tested at α = 0.05. The study posted a significant difference in academic achievement in Chemistry between the CAI and CIM groups, with students of CAI group obtaining higher Chemistry scores than students of CIM group. The study further revealed a significant gender difference in Chemistry academic achievement in fovour of girls. Based on these findings, it was therefore recommended that Chemistry teachers should adopt use of CAI in their teaching for improvement of students’ academic achievement in Chemistry and in particular, the girls.