Autonomy, Attitude and Interest to Learn as Predictors of Academic Perfomance Among Secondary School Students In Kitui County, Kenya

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Mutinda, Moses Muithya
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From 2012 to 2018, performance in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education by students in Kitui County has been consistently low. Learner autonomy, attitude towards school, and interest in learning were all linked to academic performance in the county in this report. The study's four goals were to determine the direction and magnitude of the relationship between each predictor variable and academic performance, as well as to develop a predictive equation for academic performance using the three predictor variables. This research was focused on Vygotsky's sociocultural theory, which considers learning to be a social process that takes place within a cultural context. In the year 2019, the study used a correlational research design with 420 form three students in Tseikuru Sub County as the target population. Public secondary schools in Tseikuru Sub County, as well as form three students, were randomly selected. The number of participants per school was determined using proportionate sampling, while the study participants were chosen using simple random sampling. The information was gathered using an adapted questionnaire. The teacher's assessment records were used to obtain the students' academic performance ratings. A pilot study was conducted to allow the researcher to determine internal accuracy reliability and assess the test instruments' validity. The pilot study's findings were consistent to those of the main study. The data was analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) (Version 21). Multiple regression analysis and Pearson product moment correlation were used to test the hypotheses. Learner autonomy had a significant positive correlation with academic performance (r(175)=.28, p.05), attitude towards school had a significant positive correlation with academic performance ( r(175)=.12, p.05), and interest to learn had a high positive significant correlation with academic performance ( r(175)=.87, p.05), according to the results of this study. The study's main finding was that learner autonomy, attitude towards school and interest in learning are both positive correlates and important predictors of academic performance. It was suggested that learner autonomy be encouraged, as well as a positive attitude towards school and interest to learn among students. It was suggested that more research be done on attitudes toward teachers, learning, and attitude towards a specific topic. More research on the role of gender in mediating the relationship between autonomy, attitude towards school, and interest in learning and learners' academic performance is also recommended. In addition, the study recommends further research on whether the relationship between autonomy, attitude towards school and interest to learn varies depending on category of the school and a comparative study between poorly performing and well performing schools.
A Research Thesis Submitted to the School of Education in Partial Fulfilment of the Requirements for Award of the Degree of Master of Education (Educational Psychology) of Kenyatta University, October, 2022
Autonomy, Attitude, Interest to Learn, Secondary School, Students, Kitui County, Kenya, Academic Perfomance