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Using Instructional Materials to Sustain Pss2 Secretarial Students’ Interest in Office Practice Subject at Joy Professional Academy, Kumasi Essay

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Paper type: Essay

Background to the Study A teaching method may be described as the standard procedure in the presentation of instructional materials and the content of activities. It is the way and manner in which the teacher presents his/her lesson to enable his/her students acquire knowledge in the subject under consideration. Any teaching method a teacher uses has advantages, disadvantages, and requires some preliminary preparation. Often times, a particular teaching method will naturally flow into another, all within the same lesson, and the excellent teacher can develop the skills to make the process faultless to their students.

The classification of a teaching method as being right for a particular lesson depends on many factors such as, the age and developmental level of the students, their experiences, interests and goals, what they already know, and what they need to know to succeed with the lesson, the subject-matter content, the objective of the lesson, the available number of students, time, space and material resources, and the physical setting. However, another, more difficult problem is to select an instructional method that best fits one’s particular teaching style and the lesson-situation.

There is no one right method for teaching a particular lesson, but there are some criteria that pertain to each lesson that can help a teacher make the best decision possible. Individuals learn in different ways. According to Dale (1996) from the www. dol. gov website, a person remembers 10% of what they read, 20% of what they heard, 30% of what they seen and 50% of what is seen and heard. The percentage increases for those fortunate enough to read, hear, see and do things in actual or practical experiences.

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A teacher has many options when choosing a style to teach by. The teacher may write lesson plans of their own, borrow plans from other teachers, or search online or within books for lesson plans. Teachers know that students learn in different ways. Students take in information and demonstrations of knowledge differently too. Teachers use multiple means of knowledge to help students learn and strengthen understanding. Teachers use a variety of strategies and methods to ensure that all students have equal opportunities to learn.

Teaching methods vary as to the conditions they can create and different types of learning objectives require different conditions for achievement, the choice of teaching methods should therefore be based primarily on the type of learning objective. First, a single teaching method typically cannot create all the conditions necessary for a given learning objective. Second, learning objectives involving complex skills require teaching methods that promote active learning on the part of students, while learning objectives involving simpler skills can be achieved with more passive teaching methods.

However, most teachers of Accounting have been using the lecture method to teach students various concepts and materials in accounting. Students thus become passive learners as they only become receptors of knowledge and are allowed very limited participation in the lessons. This has been one of the contributory factors of a significant number of students failing or performing abysmally in the Accounting paper. This method also suppresses the thinking abilities of the students and affects their abilities to analyse and work problems accurately.

Meanwhile, a lot of teaching methods abound and so the researcher would like to find out if the participatory method of teaching can help improve students understanding of the Double Entry Principle in accounting. Statement of the Problem Although there is a growing emphasis on accounting education and a growing awareness for students to acquire greater knowledge of the concepts in accounting, most teachers who teach the subject mostly use the lecture method in the delivery of lessons. Students thus do rote learning and find it very difficult to analyse and solve most problems in accounting. The aim f the researcher therefore, is to attempt to use the participatory method to assist students in their efforts to acquire more knowledge and improve their understanding of the complex nature of the Double Entry Principle. Objective(s) of the Study The specific objective of the study is to use participatory method in teaching the double entry principle in accounting. Purpose of the Study The purpose of the study is to find out whether the participatory method of teaching can help to improve Post Secondary School (PSS) 1 students at Joy Professional Academy understanding of the Double Entry Principle in Accounting.

Research Questions The following research questions were used for the study (1) How can the participatory method of teaching improve students’ understanding of the Double Entry Principle in Accounting? (2) Is the participatory method of teaching the best for teaching the Double Entry Principle in accounting? Significance of the Study The significance of the study are as follows: (i) This action research would help teachers teach double entry principles to improve upon the learning of accounting to PSS1 students at Joy Professional Academy, Kumasi by using participatory based method. ii) It would help teachers strive to improve their teaching methods in accounting. (iii) It would help increase the students’ level of learning and understanding. When there is an emphasis on teaching for meaning, there is student’s greater retention and an increased likelihood that the ideas will be used in new situations. (iv) It would serve as literature for review in further studies. Delimitations of the Study Due to time and material constraints, the study is limited to the Post Secondary School (PSS) 1 class at Joy professional Academy, Kumasi. Only the members in this class were used for the study.

Organisation of the Study This study is divided into six chapters. Chapter one is the introduction. It looks at the background of the study, the statement of the problem, the purpose of the study and significance of the study. It also briefly looks at the research questions and delimitations of the study. Chapter two is the literature review. Literature is reviewed according to the research questions. Chapter three presents the methodology used for this study. It also looks at the research design. It explains the population, sample and sampling procedure and the instruments used in collecting data for the study.

It also discusses how data was collected and analysed. Chapter four presents the intervention design and implementation of the problem identified Chapter five presents the results of the study. It also analyses the results of the study. Chapter six presents the summary, conclusions and recommendations of the study. CHAPTER TWO LITERATURE REVIEW Introduction This chapter is the review of literature. It presents the literature according to the research questions. In presenting the literature review, the researcher would like to give a brief detail about the Double entry Principle

In accountancy, the double-entry bookkeeping (or double-entry accounting) system is the basis of the standard system used by businesses and other organisations to record financial transactions. Its premise is that a business’s (or other organisation’s) financial condition and results of operations are best recorded in accounts. Each account maintains a history of changes in monetary values about a particular aspect of the business. This system is called double-entry because each transaction is recorded in at least two accounts.

Each transaction results in at least one account being debited and at least one account being credited, with the total debits of the transaction equal to the total credits. This requirement has a benefit to the bookkeeper, because the accuracy of the accounts can be checked quickly – for, when all the accounts that have debit balance are summed, they should equal the sum of all the accounts which have a credit balance. Without this requirement, there would be no quick means to check accuracy. The double entry system is the base or fabric for a full fledged financial accounting information system.

Financial accounting information system comprises all the documents, records and evidence of financial transactions between the business, its employees and the outside world. Advantages of double entry principles i. Entry for every transaction is made twice, one on the debit side and the other at the credit side. This provides an automatic check on the correctness of the records. If cash is misappropriated, other things being equal, it would be revealed by the accounts ii. A picture of the company’s financial obligations and the resources to meet them is always in focus. iii.

All transactions are suitably divided into a personal and in personal group. iv. A double entry system facilitates the setting out of the financial position of the business at any moment in time. v. The double entry system helps the business to associate each person or business with the area of operation to which he is connected with the business and the amount due on such operation. Disadvantages of double entry principles i. It is time consuming and expensive since every transaction should be recorded at least twice ii. It is complicated; it is not easy for a layman to understand and interpret an account, e. g. edger accounts and cashbook. iii. Single entry system avails itself to everyone who can read and write to keep his own records of his transactions. Double entry can be properly done only by an expert. iv. The double entry system gives an unreliable assurance that if the trial balance and the balance sheet agree at the two sides then some accuracy prevails in the recording process. Using the participatory method of teaching to improve students’ understanding of the Double Entry Principle in Accounting The quality of education depends, to a large extent, on the quality of teachers involved in its development and delivery.

A quality teacher will acknowledge the needs and interests of the pupil, permit the pupil to learn at his/her own pace, encourage learning through doing and where necessary provide remedial and enrichment instruction among others. The methods and techniques used by the teacher will help their students realise the understanding of any topic. Jones (1987) in Andersson & Bendix (2006) states that participatory teaching methods are “those which draw the student into the classroom learning process. ” A good learning experience can be borne out of the interaction between the participants freely exchanging their knowledge and ideas.

Participatory teaching methods can increase both the teachers’ and students’ motivation, as the awareness of what is going on in the classroom increases through interaction. According to Jones (1987) participatory teaching methods include, for example, brainstorming to create ideas spontaneously, directed dialogues as examples of problem solving, small group discussions for preparing food for thought for the whole group, role playing as a stimulation, games as thematized interaction, panel discussions for airing ideas, debates for learning argumentation, and Socratic dialogues as a way to explore the theme further.

Scharff and Brown (2004) add learning communities to participatory teaching methods as a way to integrate together students with heterogeneous backgrounds. In theory of situated learning both learners and teachers are considered to form a community of practice together (Wenger, 1998). Similar to apprenticeship, the learner participates in the community, first to learn legitimate ways to communicate within it, and gradually to participate as a full-fledged member in transferring knowledge and skills. The situated learning approach enlightens us on the idea that learning is a two-way process of interaction.

The way and manner a teacher would deliver his/her content to his/her students would be informed by the kind of teaching method he/she is using at the particular point in time. Factors like the size of the class, the objectives of the lesson, the time allocated for the lesson, the nature of the topic being treated and its content, among others would help the teacher to know which teaching method to use (Baffour-Awuah, 1992). Perrott (1988) commented on teachers’ characteristics that promote teaching and learning as follows: teachers should be enthusiastic, businesslike and task oriented.

She said further that teachers should be clear when presenting instructional content. She added that teachers should also use a variety of instructional materials and procedures and should provide opportunities for students to learn the instructional content. Farrant (1982) said that to promote effective teaching and learning in schools, the teachers should be knowledgeable or qualified and be able to adopt the appropriate instructional methods to bring about desired objectives.

The best teaching method for presenting the Double Entry Principle in Accounting According to Baffour-Awuah (1992), there is nothing like the best teaching method for teaching one or all topics in any subject. It needs a combination of two or more methods for one to teach effectively. Francoise et al (1995) suggested that instructional choice can improve comprehension and memory of concepts and procedures while affording students an opportunity to develop their thinking skills, principles and concept demanded by the accounting students.

Cooper and Mucks (1989) described group learning as a structural systematic instructional strategy in which small groups work together towards a common goal. When establishing a basis for constructing an appropriate response to the afore-mentioned description, it is important for an instructor to use group learning in the teaching and learning of accounting. Feldman and Dow (1997) supported the idea that group activities that enhance students’ communication and interaction encourages more active learning environment.

Larson (1990) revealed that the educational philosophy behind the development of accounting is that learning occurs most effective when students are actively involved. He said the goal is for students to use much of their study time as possible in active behaviour such as answering questions and solving problems. The above statements suggest that to promote effective teaching and learning in school, teachers should involve students actively in lessons especially concerning problem solving and workings on class exercises.

Tamakloe et al (1996) said that it is important to note that the rate of learning of the average student is not the same as that of the very fast learner, or the one who learns at a slow pace. They said this calls for the recognition of the potent role which individual differences play in the learning process. They have suggested that programmes of learning should be designed to cater for individual dispositions so that each student can learn at his own pace. Teachers, of course, aim at the best possible product, such as students passing their exams and getting a degree.

Students, nowadays, are both customers and users of teaching. The students know their own rights, and capabilities or limitations, and the value of this should be put in to use in getting the students involved during the teaching/learning process (Vuokko and Berg, 2007). According to Andersson and Bendix (2006) in university traditions, students are usually approached as teaching subjects. Smith (1999) disclosed that good relationship between students and instructors and the establishment of conducive environment in the classroom have the tendency of improving students’ performance in accounting for the objectives to be achieved.

This framework recognizes the need to first establish the learning objective and the material needed to accomplish the objectives. Brunner and Piaget (1993) who advocated for learning by discovery believed that students learn best when they have the opportunity to discover for themselves what they do not know. Hence, concrete learning should precede abstract learning. Farrant (1982) stressed that motivational methods can bring about desired objectives. He therefore mentions motivational techniques such as awarding arks and praise, and giving special gifts like books and sweets, doing practice and repetition and individualised learning are important in promoting effective learning. Ehiametalor (1990) suggested that to improve upon the performance of the students, the presentation of accounting information should be followed by assignments. Moore (1989) maintained that teachers should be enthusiastic in their teaching, because enthusiastic teachers produce higher academic achievers all things being equal.

Whitehead (1991) suggested that to improve the ability of students in schools, students should concentrate on areas in which they are least competent. He said the competencies required of the accounting students are the ability to master the processes involved which include the ability to explain concepts. Davidson (1994) charged all stakeholders in education to lay a strong foundation in education to enable students do well in school. Borich (1988) also suggested that the teacher could concentrate on the middle level or average students while giving individual attention to the weak students.

He recommended that the above average students could be encouraged to work ahead of their colleagues. Finally, accounting students need to apply accounting principles and concepts in tackling accounting questions. Johnstone and Biggs (1998) mention problem-based learning, identification of problem-solving skills, critical thinking skills and case method as ways to develop accounting studies. CHAPTER THREE METHODOLOGY Introduction This chapter presents the methodology used for the study. It also looks at the research design. It explains the population, sample and sampling rocedure and the instruments used in collecting data for the study. It discusses how data was collected and analysed. Research Design The research design used for the study was the evaluative study. This method sought to make judgement about the effectiveness and relevance of the participatory method of teaching in Accounting. Population The population was made up of students of the PSS 1 Accounting Class and teachers in the school who taught Accounting. This population was chosen because they would be able to provide the researcher with the relevant data needed for analysis. Sample and Sampling Procedure

The sample for the study was made up of twenty five students drawn from the PSS1 Accounting Class. The simple random sampling method which is a probability sample in which each population element has a known and equal chance of being included in the sample was used to select the respondents. It also helped the researcher to identify and enumerate the finite population. Instruments The researcher used questionnaires, interviews and observations as its key instruments in the study. Questionnaires Questionnaire was used to obtain information from a number of the students and teachers who were sampled for the study.

The items in the questionnaires were written in a clear language to enable respondents understand and answer the questions objectively as possible. The choice of the questionnaire for the study was that the researcher did her internship in the school in which the research took place and so the identification of the population for the study was not difficult. The only weakness was that it some of the respondents did not return their questionnaire for the analysis of data. Interview schedules Students and teachers’ views on the double entry principle in accounting were sought.

The interview sought to find out students perception, interest, attitude and their performance in accounting. It also sought to find students views on the various methods employed during the teaching of the subject Observations Personal observations were carried out during the one year internship programme. The purpose was to find out how students behave towards the teaching of accounting and how to improve upon students’ performance in the subject. Again, it was aimed at observing methods and strategies employed during the teaching of accounting.

In addition, the researcher also observed the relationship between the teachers and students during accounting lessons. Data Collection Procedures Data was collected through questionnaires and interviews. Data was also collected through books, journals, and articles written by specialist in the fields of education mostly especially on teaching methods. Data Analysis In an effort to make the presentation of the findings succinct and comprehensive, the data was organised into tables and the results were analysed using mean mark.

The difference in mean mark helped the researcher to make meaningful conclusions for the study. CHAPTER FOUR INTERVENTION DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION Introduction This chapter presents the intervention design and implementation for this study. Intervention Design The following factors are the interventions designed to use the participatory method of teaching to improve students’ understanding of the Double Entry Principle in Accounting. The participatory method of teaching involves teaching methods that involves learners or students in the teaching/learning process.

There are a lot of participatory teaching methods but the ones the researcher used were: (i) The Activity Method (ii) The Demonstration Method (iii) The Discussion Method Implementation of the Intervention Designs (i) The Activity Method This is a way of working that allows investigation, experience or study in which the student is allowed to develop and express his own ideas, thoughts and activities. This method is learner-centred in that it lays more emphasis on the active participation of the student with a minimum intervention or interference by the teacher.

Implementation of the Activity Method The researcher selected the sub-topic “Recording transactions in the assets and liabilities accounts” under the Double Entry Principle and all the materials and teaching aids like charts and prepared questions for the group. The researcher prepared the environment (i. e. the classroom) where the lesson was held to facilitate teaching and learning. The researcher gave the exact and clear instructions to the students as to how to go through the lesson. This was done during the introduction of the lesson.

The rule or instruction for the double entry concept states that every debit entry in the book of accounts must have a corresponding credit entry and vice versa. The rule for entering transactions into the assets and liability accounts was explained to the students. The rule for entering transactions in the assets accounts states that: (a) to increase an asset, debit the accounts and (b) to decrease an asset, credit the accounts and while the rule for entering transactions in the liability accounts states that: (a) to increase a liability, credit the account and (b) to decrease a liability, debit the account.

The students were grouped into five groups with five members in each group for the activities. Each group was given a prepared question and was told to discuss and enter the transaction into the appropriate accounts correctly showing the double entry effect of each transaction. For example, the questions that were given are as follows: a) Kwame started business with cash GH? 400 b) Paid loan from outside party by cash GH? 20 c) Introduced capital deposited into the business bank account GH? 100 d) Purchased stock in trade on one month’s credit for GH? 30 from Ato e) Bought a motor van GH? 0 paying by cheque The researcher moved among the groups to guide and supervise their work. The researcher called the group leader to present the solution of each group on the chalkboard. Students were then asked to give their opinions on each solution that had been presented. They discussed the solutions that had been presented. The researcher was alert to any unexpected situation that occurred in the course of the lesson and gave prompt solutions to them. The researcher concluded the lesson by reviewing it through questioning and also allowed the students to give a verbal summary of what they did.

The researcher gave students assignment on the sub-topic to do at home and present it to her for marking the next day. The advantage of the activity was that it makes learning more interesting, enjoyable but not passive and boring to the students. It encourages pupils to be creative, curious, develop initiative and to discover new knowledge. It also helps to reinforce and revise what is being taught. However, its disadvantages are that it is time consuming and also requires a hardworking and resourceful teacher to handle this method effectively. (ii) The Demonstration Method

The demonstration involves showing, telling and doing something can be observed by an individual or group of learners. In demonstration, the teacher is the principal performer or demonstrator while the students are his/her audience. It is usually the major part of all the learning activities which facilitate learning by doing. Implementation of the Demonstration Method The researcher gave the sub-topic “Account” to the students. She introduced the lesson by telling the students the objectives of the demonstration in order to motivate them to participate in the lesson. The researcher gave an overview of the main steps of the demonstration.

This was to allow the students have an idea of what was to be learnt. Steps 1. (i) The definition of the term “account” was written on the chalkboard (ii) The simplest form of the account was given to the students as the ‘T’-account. It has two sides; the left-hand side and the right-hand side. The left-hand side is debit (Dr. ) side and the right-hand side is the credit (Cr. ) side. The title which is centred at the top of the account gives the particular name of account. (iii) The example of the account format was written on the chalkboard for the students to see as: Machine Account Dr. Cr. 2.

The students were shown how to record transactions at the appropriate sides of the respective accounts. For example: Kofi Atta’s Account ? ? Loan 500,000 Purchases 2,000,000 The demonstration method assists in making the results of difficult activities readily available and also can be used to verify observations made previously by students. It also helps students to think and apply what they have learnt in a demonstration to new situations. However, the demerits are that it can result in students initiating a practice without understanding its basis. It also requires much planning and preparation by the demonstrator. iii) The Discussion Method This method involves the exchange of ideas, facts and opinions about a topic between individuals or group of students under the guidance of the teacher. The main mode of interaction between the students is by verbal or oral communication. The discussion was done by the whole class. Implementation of the Discussion Method The researcher mentioned the topic to be discussed to the students. The topic that was for the discussion was “Ledger,” one of the sub-topics under the double entry system. The researcher announced the procedure for conducting the discussion to the students.

The researcher then initiated the discussion and guided students to come out with a definition of a “ledger. ” After the definition of a ledger, the researcher asked the students a series of questions to help them out with the features of a ledger. The researcher led the students through questioning to come out with the functions of the ledger. This stage was very interesting as students came out with several functions of the ledger. The researcher ensured that the students talked about the topic and did not deviate from it. The researcher asked leading questions to come out with the classifications of the ledger.

Students were able to come out with these ledgers. The researcher wrote all the important points in the course of the discussion on chalkboard for the students to see and understand what is being discussed. The researcher ended the discussion by summarising all the main points, facts and opinions mentioned in the discussion. The researcher asked the students questions to review their understanding. The merits of the discussion method is that it helps students to explore for answers to problems and it also the students to get clearer views on the ideas they express as it clarifies their thinking.

CHAPTER FIVE RESULTS OF THE STUDY Introduction This chapter presents the results of the study. It also discusses the results of the study. This study was to find out how the use of the participatory method of teaching could help improve students’ understanding of the double entry principle in accounting. The study reveals the pre and post intervention results when the various intervention strategies were implemented. Table 1: Results of the students with the use of the Activity Method No. of Students Mean Mark Difference in Mean BeforeAfter 255. 087. 041. 96

From Table 1, the mean mark of the students in series of exercises conducted for the students before the use of the activity method was 5. 08. The mean mark of the students after the use of the method was 7. 04. When the two marks are compared, the mean difference between the two scores was 1. 96. This indicated that the use of the activity method had a greater influence on the understanding and performance of the students in the various tasks. Table 2: Results of the students with the use of the Demonstration Method No. of Students Mean Mark Difference in Mean BeforeAfter 2535. 4862. 426. 76 From Table 2, the mean mark of the students in series of exercises conducted for the students before the use of the demonstration method was 35. 48 while the mean mark of the students after the use of the method was 62. 24. The mean difference between the two scores was 26. 76. This indicated that the use of the demonstration method had a greater influence on the understanding and performance of the students in the various tasks. Table 3: Results of the students with the use of the Discussion Method No. of Students Mean Mark Difference in Mean BeforeAfter 2544. 8069. 8425. 4 From Table 3, the mean mark of the students in series of exercises conducted for the students before the use of the discussion method was 44. 80 while the mean mark of the students after the use of the method was 69. 84. The mean difference between the two scores was 25. 04. This indicated that the use of the discussion method had a greater influence on the understanding and performance of the students in the various tasks. Discussion of the Findings The objective of the study was to use the participatory teaching method to enhance students’ understanding of the double entry principle.

The mean mark of the students in the assessment tasks before the use of the intervention strategy (activity method) was implemented was very low. This however, had increased by a significant (greater) margin. This meant that the students had showed much improvement and understanding of the topic that they had being taught. The activity method helped the students to be able to undertake the various activities that were presented to them. With respect to table 2, the story was not much different. The students’ mean mark had increased by a margin of 26. 76.

This showed that the method used in delivering the lessons to the students was very effective. From table 3, the pre-intervention mean mark of 44. 80 had increased to 69. 84. The discussion method had helped to improve upon the performance of students in using the double entry principle in accounting. The adoption of all the intervention strategies contributed effectively in diverse ways to help achieve the objectives of the study. For instance, student’s response to questions showed that their improved performance in the various forms of assessment indicates that each of the intervention designs played a vital role. CHAPTER SIX

REFLECTIONS, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS Introduction This chapter presents the reflections, conclusion and recommendations for the study. Reflection In reflecting upon this study, the researcher has come out with the following comments. The methods used by the researcher developed in students the spirit of co-operation among the students particularly during the use of the class discussion and the activity teaching methods. It was also revealed that the combination of different teaching methods during

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