The study examined poor equipped language laboratory as determinant of academic failure in oral English among secondary school students in Ogun State, a case study of four selected private and public schools in Ogun State. The study employed the survey design and the purposive sampling technique to select 450 students across S.S.S 1-3. A well-constructed questionnaire, which was adjudged valid and reliable, was used for collection of data from the respondents. The data obtained through the administration of the questionnaires was analyzed using the Pearson correlation analysis.
The results showed that there is positive and significant relationship language laboratories and adequately equipped (r=0.772; p<0.05). a positive and significant relationship exists between Language laboratory equipments and Oral English (r=.896; p<0.05). a positive and significant relationship language laboratories and academic performance (r=0.772; p<0.05). a positive and significant relationship exists between statistically significant differences and academic performance (r=.896; p<0.05).
The study concluded that poor equipped language laboratory are crucial factors and strong determinant of academic failure in oral English among secondary school students in Ogun state.
The study suggested that; Government should as a matter of urgency direct her attention to the provision of language laboratories in primary and secondary schools; Oustanding oral english teachers should be sent out on training outside the country (english speaking country) to see and learn how Language Laboratories are used; Regular training an re-training programs should be organized to sharpen the skills of teachers to ensure better performance.
1.1 Background to the Study
The benefits of language laboratory cannot be over emphasized without defining language and its importance. In order to use a language laboratory, students must be conversant with the term ‘language’ and its usefulness in learning. Language is the method of human communication either spoken or written consisting of the use of words in a structured and conventional way. It is also the development, acquisition, maintenance and the use of complex systems of communication (Atolagbe, 2008; Flora, 2009). Osisanwo (2012) defined language as the human vocal noise or the arbitrary graphic representation of this noise used systematically and conventionally by members of a speech community for purposes of communication. Human language is the most useful tool of communication to mankind (Atolagbe, 2008). Okoh (2006) averred any definition of language must first consider it as a means of communication. It is not debatable that language has so many uses and importance as it cuts across all fields of study or occupation such as the language of publishing, language of medicine, language of business etc. Language learning is not similar to learning other subjects. It is not confined to writing an examination and getting a degree or award, the four skills have to be practiced, to acquire a sensibility for the sounds and rhythm of a language, a person must hear the best samples of a spoken language.
Language is a compulsory subject to be taken seriously at any level of education, However, the federal government has seen to it that not just English language but other languages such as Spanish, French etc. can be learned through various means. Although, there is still one major issue the government has failed to address and this is the issue of the poorly equipped language laboratories. Government should as a matter of urgency direct her attention to the provision of language laboratories in primary and secondary schools, the ministry of education should consider allocating funds as well as the maintenance of language labs. The need for having a language lab is being widely recognized by the English language Academia, schools and colleges across the country are opening up to the idea of establishing language labs for the future benefits of their learners. If all these problems can be solved only then can we think of implementing language lab in our curriculum. In the current digital age where we are all connected regardless of geographical distance ,advancement of technology has made it possible for students/non native speakers to learn languages correctly through audio and visual aids .As we live in a multilingual and multicultural world, Language laboratories can greatly help students learn languages of their choice at their own pace as it is a student- centered approach to learning ,they can record and assess their performance to make sure they are paying attention to all aspects of phonetics such as stress , pronunciation, accents etc.