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IMPACT OF  STUDENTS SOCIO- ECONOMIC BACKGROUND ON THEIR ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT IN ECONOMICS

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY

In addition to being actively engaged in their children’s educational experiences, parents play a significant influence in the education and development of their children. The home environment and the educational resources available to a child are both factors that are influenced by their parents. A person’s socioeconomic status may be determined based on a number of factors, including their employment, level of education, income, level of wealth, and where they live. Sociologists often make use of a person’s socioeconomic standing as a method for forecasting behavior. (www.answers.com). Many academics have attempted to explain and examine the reasons why there are inequalities in the academic performance of pupils by concentrating on school/environment and inherited factors, but they have neglected to pay attention to the impacts of socio-economic background. According to the findings of certain studies, the academic development of children who come from households and communities with lower socioeconomic background is slower than that of children with greater socioeconomic status. (Morgan, Farkas, Hillemeier, Maczuga, 2020).

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Research also reveals that school systems in communities with poor socioeconomic level and status tend to have less resources than other communities, which has a detrimental impact on the academic achievement of pupils. (Alscens and barbarian, 2019). The house is the most important setting for kids, and it has the potential to have a significant influence on the accomplishments of pupils. (Hoover Dempsey et al, 2019; Redding, 2020;  Nyarko, 2021). In addition, the household serves as the principal location for the child’s educational experiences. Therefore, the house has an effect on the way a kid lives, the food that the child consumes, and the lifestyle that the child chooses. It’s possible that the child’s academic performance at school will be affected by the kind of family structure he or she grows up in. According to Kellaghan (2019), having successful academic outcomes is dependent on the actions taken by parents in the home. There is a strong correlation between a person’s level of education and their life chances, income, and overall well-being (Battle and lewis, 2021). Because of this, it is essential to have a solid comprehension of the factors that either help or hurt an individual’s educational success.

Educationists of today are getting more and more conscious of the need of learning about the interests, needs, and motivations of pupils, in addition to their background information. Parents play an essential part in their children’s educational development. In addition to being actively engaged in their children’s educational experiences, parents not only create an atmosphere in the house that is conducive to learning but also decide the educational materials that are accessible to their children there. Due to the fact that each student comes from a unique family and upbringing, it is imperative that instructors take the time to get to know their students on a personal level in order to impart knowledge in the most efficient manner possible. The instructor must engage in conversation with each of these distinct groups of students in order to understand and differentiate between the students’ behaviors and attitudes. Because students learn more effectively when the content of their educational experiences is relevant to their lives, it is essential for teachers to have interests in areas of study other than intellectual development. It is necessary for him to be aware of the cultural as well as financial context of his pupils (Battle and lewis, 2021).

Students come from three distinct sorts of households, which may be categorized as follows: the poor family, the affluent family, and the typical family, which is neither excessively wealthy nor impoverished (Wilson, . 2018). The researcher said that some students came from dysfunctional families with a variety of issues; the researcher also mentioned that some kids had highly educated parents while others had parents who were illiterate. It is dependent on the effect of the environment as to which of these groups exhibits a distinct attitude toward their work and which of these groups achieves varying degrees of academic success in their classwork.

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He went on to explain that children who come from low-income households do not have access to radios, computers, television sets, or libraries, and they also do not have the ability to search the internet for material that provides specific educational context. In addition, there is little to no encouragement provided by parents, difficulties in meeting the financial obligations associated with attending school, little to no time for leisure activities or supplementary education, and the majority of parents have little to no formal education. It is possible for students in higher classes to have sufficient funds to cover the cost of their school fees. Additionally, resources such as books, radios, libraries, and newspapers, to name a few, contribute to the enhancement of the students’ mental capacities. The third category of parents is considered the middle class, and the majority of them live in homes that are either owned or leased. The parents in this category allow their children some degree of independence, and the educational facilities enjoyed by them are adequate, but none of these things can compare to what upper class people have access to. These varying aspects of kids’ socioeconomic backgrounds have an effect on the mindsets they bring to school, as well as their cognitive processes, their linguistic abilities, and their academic accomplishments. It is a commonly held belief that children whose parents have a higher or intermediate socioeconomic position are better exposed to an educational environment at home due to the supply and availability of more learning resources.

Becker & Tomes (2020), who assert that it has become well recognized that wealthy and well educated parents ensure their children’s future earnings by providing them with a favorable learning environment, better education, and good jobs, lend support to this notion. They state that it has become well recognized that wealthy and well educated parents ensure that their children will earn more in the future. In contrast to this misconception, children whose parents have a poor socioeconomic position may not have access to additional learning facilities; as a result, the ability to climb to the top of their educational ladder may not be particularly straightforward for them (Drummond & Stipek, 2019).

While discussing their research on “low income parents’ beliefs about their role in children’s academic learning,” Drummond and Stipek. (2019) mentioned that a few of these parents indicated that they believed their responsibilities were limited to meeting their children’s basic and social-emotional needs, such as providing clothing, providing emotional support, and teaching appropriate social manners. The primary purpose of this study is to investigate the degree to which students’ socio-economic circumstances influence the academic success they achieve.

1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

Students’ histories, particularly their socioeconomic and social histories, have been acknowledged as variables that impact both their lives and their academic accomplishments. It is common for teachers to have insufficient knowledge on the background of their pupils. Additionally, it is difficult for them to question about the socioeconomic background of the individual. The findings indicate that many pupils, despite having access to additional lessons, do appallingly in school, whereas the students in their cohorts who have less or no opportunities for extra instruction perform far better (Battle and lewis, 2021). Additionally, it is challenging for instructors to understand the issues of emotional instability, tension, animosity, and anxiety that kids bring from their impoverished environments. Because of this, it is very necessary to carry out an in-depth investigation of the correlation between the academic accomplishments of pupils and the socio-economic conditions of their families.

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1.3  OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

The broad objective of this study is to investigate the impact of  students socio- economic background on their academic achievement in economics. This broad objective can be broken down into the following specific objectives;

  1. To examinethe factors that influences the student’s academic achievement in economics.
  2. To evaluate relationship between parents’ occupation and Students’ academic achievementin economics.
  • To find out the relationship between the home environment and Students’ academic achievementin economics.

1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS

The following questions have been prepared for the study:

  1. What arethe factors that influences the student’s academic achievement in economics?
  2. Is there a relationship between parents’ occupation and Students’ academic achievementin economics?
  • Is there arelationship between the home environment and Students’ academic achievement in economics?

1.5  SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

The result of the relationship between the socio-economic background and students’ academic performance will help to make useful recommendations to improve the teaching profession if need be.

The teacher would be able to take new dimensions to teach those less privileged from poor background if all these problems are identified, known and taken note of. For instance, an extra lesson could be given by the teacher to some sections of the class that are weak academically in certain aspects of their learning.

Even instructional materials like television, radios, field trips and different programs might be provided for all the students and it will give those that come from poor environment some of the experiences which those students who come from rich environment have. Therefore from this type of study it can be noted that continual educational decisions could be made about students from, various social classes, cultural and economic background.

1.6  SCOPE OF THE STUDY

This study will examine the factors that influences the student’s academic achievement in economics. The study will also evaluate relationship between parents’ occupation and Students’ academic achievement in economics. Lastly, the study will find out the relationship between the home environment and Students’ academic achievement in economics. Hence the study will be delimited to Rivers State.

1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

Like in every human endeavour, the researchers encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. Insufficient funds tend to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire, and interview), which is why the researcher resorted to a moderate choice of sample size. More so, the researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. As a result, the amount of time spent on research will be reduced.

1.8  DEFINITION OF TERMS

Socio-economic status: These are the various social strata or position of people in the society. It indicates the different standard of living in the economy.

Academic achievement: performance outcomes that indicate the extent to which a person has accomplished specific goals that were the focus of activities in instructional environments, specifically in school, college, and university