An exploratory study of Teachers' perceptions of pupil disruptive classroom bevavior in some zambian secondary schools.
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This exploratory study was designed to investigate secondary school teachers perceptions of pupil disruptive behaviour in the classroom, and to classify teachers on the basis of their beliefs en classroom discipline In order to do so, the study attempted to answer the following questions: 1, To what extent is length of teaching experience a factor in influencing the teachers' perceptions of pupil disruptive classroom behaviour? 2 Is there a correlation between teacher*s sex and perception of pupil disruptive classroom behaviour? 3 What kinds of beliefs do secondary school teachers have on classroom discipline? The study was undertaken out of the need to make known the pupil behaviours which teachers, working in impoverished classroom conditions, perceive as seriously disruptive^ Since such behaviours have a bearing on curriculum implementation and if niierarchically conceptualized, they could be of practical and theoretical value to teachers and education policy makers. The study was also prompted by the need to fill an existing gap in literature as no study of this nature, focusing ©n classroom discipline problems has been done in Zambia, A questionnaire was administered through personal contacts to 200 randomly selected teachers. In order to have a representative sample, 25 percent of the teachers in each selected school were chosen for the study using stratified random procedures on the basis of length of teaching experience and sex. Four categories of the 132 respondents were obtained. The perceptions of pupil behaviour were compared among the four categories of teachers. The Kendall Coefficient of Concordance and the Spearman Rank Order Correlation Coefficient (rho), were used for this task Presented below are the major findings of the study* !• Teachers perceive pupil behaviours in a similar way despite differences in length of teaching experience and sex. 2 An overwhelming number of teachers hold Interventionist of Authoritarian beliefs on classroom discipline These are beliefs considered to be educationally-undesirable and not in harmony with modern theories of classroom discipline and learningo It was inferred from the first finding above that no specific behaviour is peculiar to one category of teachers. Teachers appear to experience ooamon pupil disruptive behaviours irrespective of their length of teaching experience, sex and beliefs on classroom discipline. Based on the above findings, the following recommendations were made. 1« That In-service training courses for teachers with many years of teaching experience should be instituted so as to expose them (the teachers) to new ideas on discipline and learning. 2« That the Ministry of General Education and Culture should embark on courses for selected teachers in each school, in Counselling and Guidance. In light of the limitations of the study and based on the natiire of the findings, recommendations for further study were madeo
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