Effect of Formative Evaluation on Academic perfomance in mathematics: A case of upper basic schools in Lusaka District

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Ntahontuye, Jean Bosco
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This study set out to evaluate and determine the effect of formative evaluation on academic performance in Mathematics in upper basic schools of Lusaka District.The study used a quasi-experimental non-equivalent design. Under this design, the classrooms were used as they were without any manipulation of the subjects. This design is not true experiment because no randomization was done and not all plausible extraneous and confounding factors were controlled. The sample was composed of 138 subjects, some of whom belonged to experimental and control groups, 42 pupils for each group, 37 pupils were used for data triangulation purposes and 9 mathematics teachers in upper basic schools.Data were collected from the pupils through pre-test, two post-tests and triangulation test. The researcher taught eighth graders for the whole term II, 2008 school year.Semi-structured interviews with mathematics teachers were also conducted. In addition, parents whose children participated in the study were given a questionnaire to fill in so as to collect information on pupils' home background factors before administering the treatment. Data analysis was done through Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS).The findings of the study supported the alternative hypothesis which stated that "Regularly conducted formative evaluation has significant statistical effect on pupils'academic performance in Mathematics". Post-test I t-value was 11.590, p-value.0001 and effect size 0.78. Post-test II t-value was 10.017, p-value .0001 and effect size 0.57. These results were obtained when experimental and control group were tested on t-test. At the level of significance 0.05, the null hypothesis was rejected.When experimental and triangulation groups were tested on t-test, t-value was 4.002,p-value .0001 and effect size 0.32, again alternative hypothesis was accepted.Qualitative data obtained from mathematics teachers, indicated that performance in Mathematics was poor in their respective schools. It was shown that teachers underwent training which included formative evaluation procedures in their preservice training but they could not use them due to the devastating factors which undermined their efforts such as poor conditions of service and low salaries, large classes and work load.The recommendations to key players in education were also made in line with the findings of the study. The main emphasis was laid on how schools formative evaluation can be supported in order to enhance academic performance in Mathematics.
Academic- Perfomance