Continuous assessment is an academic issue, which has been emphasized recently by the Federal Ministry of Education, the need for the introduction of continuous assessments is reflected in various sections of the New National policy on Education. This study therefore investigated what is really meant by continuous assessment and weather it has any positive or negative effect on the academic performances of students in Home Economics in secondary schools at Fegge in Onitsha South local Government Area of Anambra State. The study also went further to find out to what extent the teachers and students’ like to take part in continuous assessment and also to find out whether continuous assessment pose any problem to both the teachers and students. In this study, the design of the study used was questionnaire design, since it would directly; more than any other design elicit the opinion of the respondents. The instrument for data collection was questionnaire; it was structured in such a way to consist of both open ended and close ended question in the presentation and analysis of data. The coding and scoring procedure used was tally method to drive at the scores and the findings were made and discussed, from the findings, the researcher made some recommendation that will enable the Federal ministry of Educational and teachers then gave suggestion for further research.
Background of the Study:
Many educationists have defined continuous assessment in dierent ways. The handbook on continuous assessment (FMEST, 1999) defined continuous assessment as a mechanism whereby the final grading of students in the cognitive, effective and psychomotor domains of behaviour take into account in a systematic way, all his performance during a given period of schooling. Adebib (1999) saw continuous assessment as a systematic and objective process of determining the extend of a student’s performance in all the expected changes in his behaviour. This is assessment of the students. Ezewu and Okoye (1999) defined continuous assessment as a systematic and objective process of determining the extent of student’s performance in all the expected changed in his behaviour from the day he/she enters upon a course of study. From the above definitions one can define continuous assessment as a system of assessment which is carried out as predetermined intervals for the purpose of monitoring and improving the overall performance of students and of the teaching learning environment.
In all secondary schools, continuous assessment accounts for thirty-percent (30%) of a student’s performance in each subject, while in higher institutions, like the polytechnic allow forty-percent (40%) and University allow thirty-percent (30%) for in-course assessment. The concept of continuous assessment is not new in education. In developed countries like United States, Canada, Australia and England, continuous assessment is inbuilt into the teaching learning process, that is why it is one of the distractive features of the new National Policy on Education. In Nigeria, there are dierent views about the concept to the extent that some of them are misconceptions. According to Okpala, Onocha and Oyedeji (2005) continuous assessment is not continuous testing of the cognitive ability of students. What is practiced in many schools is continuous testing where teachers administer tests on student on a fortnightly or monthly basis. This approach does not differ from the old system of assessment. The mode of interpretation does not take into account other factors that may aect the students and the learning processes.
Furthermore, the affective and psychomotor domains are usually neglected. The current continuous assessment technique is meant to replace the former one-short and end-of-term or year examination that was being alleged to be responsible for law performance of students in our schools. Yet despite all these, this study will like to find out the effect of continuous assessment on academic performance of students in Home Economics in Secondary Schools at Fegge in Onitsha South Local Government Area of Anambra State.
Statement of the Problem:
There are various problems encountered by the teachers and student of Home Economics during the time of continuous assessment in Secondary School at Fegge in Onitsha South Local Government Area of Anambra State. These include insufficient supply of home economics equipment by the schools or the government. Lack of Home Economics Lab, teachers lacking enough training. Others include lack of finance, poor curriculum and crowded time table, these are some of the problems encountered by the teachers and students of Home Economics at the time of continuous assessment in Secondary Schools at Fegge Onitsha South Local Government Area of Anambra State.