EFFECT OF PUNISHMENT AND REWARD ON ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS. A RESEARCH PROJECT TOPICS ON GUIDANCE AND COUNSELING
This study examined the effect of punishment and reward on academic performance of senior secondary school students in Shomolu local government area of Lagos State. Five research questions were formulated to guide the study. Through the process of simple random sampling, a total of two hundred (200) students from five (5) senior secondary schools were selected to participate in the study. The major instrument used for collecting data was a questionnaire tagged EPRAP. The data collected were analyzed. Chi square was used to test the hypotheses. Findings showed that punishment has significant effect on the academic performance of students. It was also discovered that intrinsic reward has no effect on the academic performance of students. Research also showed that extrinsic reward has a significant effect on the academic performance of students. From results findings, it was recommended that students should focus more on self motivators rather than on gifts and awards. Also, teachers, and parents should use all forms of punishment and reward systems appropriately as over use frequent reliance on any of them may reduce the effectiveness.
Motivation itself is a hodge-podge- a term of very complex dimensions. It is known to include the rewards and punishments among many other interacting drives, forces and incentives which affect or influence student’s learning. ‘Extrinsic’ forms of motivation like rewards and punishments have always been used by lectures/ teachers educators to correct or stimulate certain forms of behaviors. Yet, what their effects and consequences are, whether they facilitate or hinder learning and to what extent, how they operate to increase, if at all, the efficiency of learning and many such allied questions have remained largely unanswered. Or, their answers have generally been improvised, for the most part, from intuition, conjecture or just intelligent guess- work rather than on research findings. The purpose of this paper, therefore, is to examine these questions in order to discover (uncover, to be more specific) the effect of punishment and reward on the academic performance of students. For purposes of analysis, rewards will include intrinsic and extrinsic rewards. Also, punishment will include corporal punishments, Expulsion and suspension.
1.1 Background of the Study
Students are priceless assets and most essential elements in education. It is absolutely necessary to direct students to exhibit acceptable attitude and behavior within and outside the school. In an attempt to achieve an organized and peaceful school environment and maintain law and order, school management specifies rules and regulations to guide the activities of members of the educational organization. Student’s discipline is a prerequisite to almost everything a school has to offer students (Selfert and Vornberg, 2002). Seifert and Vornberg further linked discipline with both the culture and climate of the school thus. In schools where discipline is a serious problem, for example, where students bully others, parents tend to transfer their children to ‘better’ schools, and because the well behaved usually perform well (Rigby, 2000), their transfer can affect the overall performance of that school. Troublesome students can sometimes make teachers react emotionally to the extent of using punishment. But punishment, instead of curbing behavior, can aggravate it (Dreikurs, Grunwald and Pepper 1998). Currently, schools have different types of reward and penalty policy in place, but almost all of them have one common goal which is to motivate students to learn. Educators nowadays are aware that giving penalties are counterproductive.
Punishment is the use of physical or psychological force or action that causes pain in an attempt to prevent undesirable behavior from recurring. Scolding, threats,deprivations, and spankings are all forms of punishment. Back in the nineteenth century, Froebel wrote that the use of punishment was a good way for adults to make a child “bad”. If the goal for child is the development of morality, of making good choices on his /her own, then punishment should not be involved .conditions should be created that not only allow but strongly induce children to be or become moral and disciplined individuals who can make good choices on their own(Bettelheim,1985;Ramsburg,1997).