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1.1   Background of the Study

Education is a means through which young and old members the society are taught about the expected behaviour of the society and the rules of polity, the values, skills attitudes and knowledge that equip the individual to achieve personal and society development and progress. Ozigi (1998)

According to Danladi (2006), education is a process of teaching and learning in which students acquire practical knowledge, value and skills for effective participation in the society. He further said asserted that , the process of acquiring the relevant knowledge, attitude, values and skills must be made as concrete as possible for easy learning.

History of Financial Accounting

There is no accurate record as to when accounts started, but available information suggests that record keeping is as old as man. The starting point can be linked to the merchants in the Babylonian and Assyrian civilizations, about 4000 years B C. The strategy for keeping records then was to make marks on the wall, stone, papyrus or wax tablets, it was highly primitive.

The history of accounting is not complete without mentioning the name of an Italian monk and Mathematician LUCCA PACIOLO. In 1494, the crucial event in accounting was the introduction of double entry book system in Italy described as “Italian Method”. In his famous treatise Summa De. Arithmetical Geometrical Proportion et proportionalita in 1994 in Venice. Reverend father Lucca Paciolo by giving insight into the reasoning behind accounting records. He postulated that all entries must have a double- entry one a debtor, and one a creditor. Even though during this period the records were prepared to show statement for the business rather than the owner, but the yearly preparation was still lacking.

After paciolo, a Dutchman advocated the profit and loss account at yearly interval. The level of civilization and technological advancement helped in the development of modern method of accounting.

During the industrial revolution there was need to sophisticated accounting methods. Different professional bodies were formed e.g. ICA Scotland in 1854. ICA England and Wales in 1880, etc. With the development of new methods ownership was separated from management. Since the discovery of the double entry principle, there has been tremendous development in accounting theories and methods. The introduction of micro and mini computers have brought enhanced performance but the fundamental principles remain unchanged.

In Nigeria, record keeping has antecedents in the ancient kingdoms and Empire and prominent then was the periodic contributions which were recorded on the wall. But the granting of royal character to Royal Niger Company was the turning point period in record keeping. The governing accounting principles in Nigeria as almost the same as the one’s in Britain.

In 1965, the institute of chartered Accountants of Nigeria was established and affiliated with the professional institutes in Britain and USA. Many Nigerians came back as professional accountants and became members. The institute was charged with the responsibilities of regulating accounting procedures and practice in Nigeria.

In 1982, Nigeria Accounting standard Board was established to set standards to guide accounting operations. Members include Accounting Teachers Association, Chamber of Commerce, Central Bank of Nigeria, Finance Ministry of Nigeria, etc.Now in Nigeria/ there are two recognized bodies namely institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria  (ICAN), Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANA)

1.2   Statement of the Problem

The primary objective of financial accounting in the secondary school curriculum is to prepare the students for Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination (SSCE) which will enable the holders pursue further education or to go into lower clerical work in the office. It is as a result that the government, teachers and parents have been given support to ensure that student’s performance in both internal and external examination has improved.

However, the researcher through discussion with some of the financial accounting teachers in secondary schools and through interaction with some of the students offering financial accounting at secondary school level realized that financial accounting has not recorded a remarkable success. Many of the students that offered the subject in SSCE have failed woefully. Some of them that secured clerical job have not been able to adjust to the practical working of financial accounting and finally some of those that gained admission for further studies have not been able to cope up due to their poor foundation in financial accounting.

For example WAEC (2010) analysis of percentage performance of candidate in ten popular subjects in WAEC for 2008,2009 and 2010 revealed 52.48%,58.21% and 51.85% respectively, failed financial accounting. However, of recent the reverse is the case since there is low enrolment of students for accounting in Senior Secondary and low number of accounting teachers in Senior Secondary. It is as a result of this problem that the researcher intends to investigate on the Cause of student failure in financial accounting.

1.3 Purpose of the Study

The aim and objective of the study is to find out the causes of student’s failure in financial accounting at SSCE level in Government Secondary Schools in AwkaEtiti Local Government Area of Anambra State, Nigeria.

Therefore, the study intends to:

  1. Assess the effectiveness of teacher’s attitude on students academic performance in financial accounting.
  2. Assess the method used by financial accounting teachers as it affects the learning of financial accounting in secondary schools.

iii.    Determine peer groups and parental influences and their effects on the learning of financial accounting in secondary schools.

  1. Evaluate the impact of available infrastructural facilities as they affect the learning of financial accounting in the secondary schools

1.4   Research Questions

Based on the specific objectives, the researcher deducted the following research questions:

  1. To what extent does the teacher’s attitude affect student’s performance in financial accounting?
  2. To what extent does the method used in teaching financial accounting affect the learning of financial accounting in secondary schools?
  3. To what extent does peer groups and parental influence affect the learning of financial accounting in secondary schools?
  4. To what extent do available infrastructural facilities affect the learning of financial accounting in secondary schools?

1.5   Basic Assumptions

The following assumptions were made for the study:

  1. That all teachers teaching financial accounting are professionals
  2. That the secondary school syllabus in financial accounting is adequate for purpose of achieving its objective

iii.    That the students entry behaviour in accounting is adequate to enable them cope with instruction in financial accounting.

  1. That the West African Examination Council (WAEC) and the National Examination Council (NECO) syllabus in financial accounting cover adequately the area required to benefit students

1.6   Scope ofthe Study

This study is meant to analyze the causes of student’s failure in financial accounting at SSCE level in AwkaEtiti Local Government. This study is limited to Government owned Secondary Schools in AwkaEtiti Local Government Area of Anambra State


1.7   Significance of the Study

        Since the research contributes to development of knowledge, as such, interested students or researchers who may want to carry out similar study will find this work very worthwhile. Similarly, this study will also be helpful to policy makers in formulation of educational policy in near future. In the same vein Federal and State Ministry of Education and other institutions within the study location will benefit from this study by identifying the Causes of student failure in financial accounting at the SSCE level in AwkaEtiti local Government Area of Anambra state.

Thus using such information to current imbalances by proper funding of educational sector. It is hoped that the study will serve as an open door policy to government for finding solution to the failure of financial accounting.

Conclusively, this study wishes to create awareness among parents, state and federal government in the need to sensitize, providing conducive atmosphere for proper learning and fabulous performance where necessary.


1.8   Operational Definition of Terms

FinancialAccounting: is the field of accountancy concerned with the preparation of financial statements for decision makers, such as stakeholders, suppliers, banks, employees, government agencies, owners, and other stakeholders. It is also reporting of the financial position and performance of a firm through financial statements issued to external users on a periodic basis.

IndustrialRevolution: is the totality of the changes in economic and social organization that began about 1760 in England and later in other countries, characterized chiefly by the replacement of hand tools with power-driven machines, as the power loom and steam engine, and by the concentration of industry in large establishment.

Bookkeeping: is the recording of financial transactions. Transactions include sales, purchases, income, and payments by individual or organization. Bookkeeping is usually performed by a bookkeeper. Bookkeeping should not be confused with accounting. The accounting process is usually performed by an accountant.

ParentalInfluence: is the effect of parents have on their children. The parent-child relationship is the most important relationship the child has. Different parental styles lead to various ways the interact with their children and is an important component that shapes the child’s views about themselves and their world. Parents must be aware of the way they influence their children every day.

SSCE: Senior school certificate examination

ICAN: Institute of chartered accountant of Nigeria

ANAN: Association of national accountant of Nigeria


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