Factors that Influence the Performance in General Knowledge in Art of Senior High School Students in Abura Asebu Kwamankese District in the Central Region

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The study assesses the factors that influence academic performance in General Knowledge in Art among Visual Arts, General Art and Home Economics students in the Abura-Asebu Kwamankese District of Central Region, Ghana. The study adopted the descriptive method of qualitative research with interview, observation and questionnaire administration to identify the factors that influence Senior High School students‟ academic performance in General Knowledge in Art in Abura Aseibu Kwamankese District. Using the purposive and simple random sampling techniques, a sample of three schools; 128 respondents comprising 119 students and nine teachers were selected for in-depth study. Of three schools (coded A, B and C) sampled, the study found that the reasons for School A‟s success at WASSCE is as a result of the availability of teaching learning resource, high teacher competency, experienced teachers; and the attraction and admission of high performance BECE applicants into the Visual Arts and Art-related departments. Students in this well-endowed school have clear advantages over their colleagues in Schools B and C which are less endowed and therefore attract average and low performing candidates. Significantly, the performance of students in Schools B and C was found to be the same. While the personality behind the name of a school influences academic achievement of its students, the study revealed that the communities in which a school is located and educational opportunities they have also directly influence the academic performance and achievement of its students. Environmental factors, lack of studio facilities, and differences in teaching methodologies seem to have some influence on students‟ learning and performance in the final examinations. However, findings suggest that the identified differences between the schools have to be iv resolved through adequate resourcing, infrastructure, teacher competency, good BECE entry grades, experience and qualified teachers in order to address the differences and enhance academic achievement for students across the country.
A Thesis submitted to the School of Graduate Studies,Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Kumasi, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts in Art Education, August-2012