An analysis of the causes of grade twelve pupils’ low performance in literature in english in selected secondary schools of Lusaka district of Zambia.

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Akakulubelwa, Akakandelwa
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The study investigated the causes of low performance among twelfth-grade students in Literature in English within three selected secondary schools in Lusaka District. Three objectives were addressed: to review the performance of pupils in Literature in English at School A, B and C of Lusaka Central Zone from 2020 to 2022; to establish the views of teachers, examiners, and learners on factors contributing to pupil’s low performance in Literature; and to determine the challenges and prospects of literature as a subject in secondary schools. The study's ontological aim was to ascertain the reality of teaching literature in secondary schools by examining factors influencing low performance. Employing a qualitative approach, the research utilized a descriptive research design and collected primary data through questionnaires and interview guides. The study's paradigm was constructivism, aiming to construct views on literature through qualitative research. Purposive sampling was employed, selecting ten teachers/examiners and thirty students from three schools in Lusaka Central Zone. Thematic analysis was used to analyze gathered data, addressing three objectives: reviewing pupils' performance in Literature in English from 2020 to 2022, exploring stakeholders' views on factors contributing to low performance, and determining literature's challenges and prospects in secondary education. The study revealed a pattern of low academic performance in English literature compared to other elective subjects like Additional Mathematics and Physics. It identified challenges such as lack of motivation, inadequate learning resources, absence of visual aids, and insufficient counseling contributing to poor performance. Additionally, factors such as absenteeism, disinterest, peer pressure, academic procrastination, time management, and academic overload were found to affect performance adversely. Despite adherence to recommended teaching schedules and qualified instructors, variations in teaching effectiveness, novel selection, and delivery methods were observed among schools. Novel selection criteria were based on recommendations by the Examination Council of Zambia, novel availability, and complexity. The study recommended incorporating visual aids in teaching literature and providing motivation to both teachers and students to enhance academic performance.