International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

An Assessment of the Role of Basic Science Education in Poverty Reduction in the Sub-Saharan Africa: Nigeria as a Case Study
Benson Adesina Adegoke

Most countries in the Sub-Saharan Africa are either underdeveloped or developing. The signs on ground (e.g. in terms of economy, agriculture, health and education) show that majority of citizens in these countries are poor. This situation should not be left unattended to. Past studies have focused on the assessment of the role of general and universal education in poverty reduction. Not much empirical evidence on the role of science education in poverty reduction in Nigeria has been documented. It is on the basis of this, that in this study, the author examined how the curriculum of Junior School Basic Science has been structured and the extent to which it can help in poverty reduction in Nigeria and indeed in the Sub-Sahara Africa. Three hundred and seventy-one Basic Science Teachers randomly selected from 103 Junior Secondary Schools in Ibadan Metropolis, Oyo State, Nigeria participated in the study. A questionnaire titled “Basic Science Education and Poverty Reduction” was used. Items contained in the questionnaire sought responses from the teachers on the extent to which the curriculum of Basic Science emphasize the applications of basic science concepts to real life situations and poverty reduction. Majority of the teachers were of the opinion that the existing science curriculum was not structured towards inculcating skills, in junior school students, for poverty reduction and solving of real life problems. The teachers suggested that the Junior School Basic science curriculum should be restructured so that pupils can acquire skills that can make them self-reliant, and contribute to economic development of their society.

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