CONTINUOUS ASSESSMENT AS A GOOD PREDICTOR OF ACTUAL PERFORMANCE OF STUDENT IN ACCOUNTING EDUCATION
Background of the Study
Continuous assessment is one of the new concepts introduced in the Nigeria educational system with the new national policy on education in short it is an interval part of the new system of education otherwise known as the 9-3-3-4 system. Assessment is an essential element in the educational process. A teacher must make some measurements of the extent to which the learning experiences of students have enabled them, achieve the stated objectives of the course of study.
Ohunche and Odili (2001) defines assessment as an involving the determination for the value and work of a thing implies making decision. The changing needs and attitude of individual children call for a continuous evaluation of such needs and trials in order to enable the children understand themselves better. Their teachers to improve on their teaching methods, the parents and guidance understood the children, so that educational vocational and personal social decision can be realistically made on them. Scholars have looked at the issues of the attitude of students towards assessment in educational system and have seen that the success education will ever offer is seriously tied to the facilities relevant to it. According to Peretomode (2007) stock of educational facilities in public school system in Nigeria is enormous even at the present state of their insufficient and inadequacy. They represent substantial financial outlay to the tax payer. Establishing new educational facilities is no longer that easy because of the current state of economic depression and constantly raising costs. Edem (2008) seeing the importance and position influence of school facilities to educational achievement of students said. It is the duty of the ministry or the board of education to make furniture’s, equipment, books and expendable materials available to schools. Their inadequacy constitutes another source of frustration and disillusion among teachers. African leaders earnestly desire good education programmes for their people, but in many cases the resources are so merger that little progress can be made.
According to Inyong Abia (2002) continuous assessment are the pivot on which the wheel of teaching and learning process rotates. As cited by Inyang Abia (2004) the use of continuous assessment is the most significant aspect of influence for students effective performance. According to Bayo (2005) the availability of continuous assessment in learning process have the potency for motivating and focusing learners attention on the lesson being presented.
According to Obi (2003), a good continuous assessment can make the following contributions. Promote the development of ready skills and encourage long term habits through ready, listening and etc those learning habits from the key to continuous success in school and to the personal encouragement of leisure this throughout line. Assessment is not merely testing. Osokoya, (2006), it is a process through which the quality of an individual work or performance is judged. Mwebaza(2010). In relation to school setting. Greaney (2001) defines assessment as any procedure or activity that is designed to collect information about the knowledge, attitude, or skills of the learner or group of learners. Thus, in the context of education, assessment can be defined as a predetermined process through which the quality of a student’s performance in the three domains of educational objectives (cognitive, affective, and psychomotor) is judged. Assessment of students learning of curriculum contents in the area of knowledge, skills, and values is a major pre-occupation of many educational reforms. This is because results from such assessment not only provide feedbacks regarding the educational progress of students but remain the authentic yardstick for gaining the effectiveness of the teacher, the quality of instruction and in part the functionality of any curriculum reform. Continuous assessment as an assessment carried out in an ongoing process. Mwebaza (2010) is an objective judgment considered an important part of structured assessment purposely designed and administered to enable the teacher to evaluate some aspect of a students learning of a specific time.
There has been an increasing criticism in the educational field on high stakes examinations of having harmful effect on student learning and that it should be reduced to a minimum. Harlem and Crick(2003); Morrison and Tang, (2002); Black(2001). Black and William (2000) indicated that formative assessment, if properly implemented in schools, is a powerful means to improve student learning. In the international scenarios, formative assessment has already been practiced in schools in various western countries including Australia, Canada, Denmark, England, Finland, Italy, New Zealand and Scotland. OECD, (2005).
Notably, the education policy makers in Zambia had acknowledged the inherent benefits of continuous assessment in improving educational quality as reflected in the 2002 Education Reforms. The educational reforms’ recommendation that continuous assessment be introduced as an integral part of the examinations results was not implemented at the primary school level due to a number of reasons, one of which was public apprehension. In particular, the competencies of teachers in carrying out objective assessment and the perceptions of teachers towards assessment is coupled with managing large class sizes at primary school level. Ministry of Education(2001). The introduction of an Outcomes Based Curriculum in 2001 and the demand for more comprehensive assessment systems that impact positively on learning achievement, has prompted educational policy to re-affirm the importance of School Based Continuous Assessment in enhancing education quality.
A standardized test is any test that is administered and scored in a consistent manner to ensure legal defensibility. Standardized tests are often used in education, professional certification, psychology, the military, and many other fields Kazin (2010).Comparing the two types, standardized tests are widely used, fixed in terms of scope, difficulty and format, and are usually significant in consequences. Standardized tests are usually held on fixed dates that determined. Even though there is little variability between different copies of the same type of standardized test, still there is variability between different types of standardized tests. Ancient Chinese are the first nation used a nationwide standardized test which was called the “Imperial Examination”. This test was established by Sui Dynasty in 605 AD. The main purpose of this examination was to select able candidates for specific governmental positions.
One of the functions of a school is the certification of the individual learner under its embrace. Idowu & Esere(2009). To effectively carry out this role, assessment of one kind or the other is a prerequisite. Assessment is a means whereby the teacher obtains information about knowledge gained, behavioural changes and other aspects of the development of learners. Oguneye (2002). It involves the deliberate effort of the teacher to measure the effect of the instructional process as well as the overall effect of school learning on the behaviour of students. Assessment covers all aspects of school experience both within and outside the classroom. It covers the cognitive as well as the affective and psychomotor aspects of learning.
In Nigeria, Educational Planners and Administrators are now more conscious than ever before of their role in the nationwide scheme of curriculum innovation. Not only have new courses been introduced and new contents injected into existing subjects, a fundamental change in the system of assessment of students’ performance has also emerged through the formalization of continuous assessment as a major component of evaluation process. Oyesola, (2006); Idowu & Esere(2009).
The repeated emphasis being placed on continuous assessment is a clear evidence of its importance. The National Steering Committee on Continuous Assessment in Nigeria Schools led by E.A Yoloye (2004) regards continuous assessment as a method of ascertaining what a child gains from schooling in terms of knowledge, industry and character development, taking into account all his/her performances in tests, assignments, projects and other educational activities during a given period of term, year, or during the entire period of an educational level. Ipaye (2002). It is also a method of using the recorded performances of each pupil to help him or her improve on his or her achievement through guidance. According to Ezewu and Okoye (2001), continuous assessment refers to a systematic and objective process of determining the extent of a student’s performance in all the expected changes in his behaviour, from the day he enters upon a course of study and a judicious accumulation of all pieces of information derived from this purpose with a view to using them to guide and shape the student and to serve as basis for making important decisions about the child. In other words, continuous assessment should be systematic, comprehensive, cumulative, and guidance oriented.
Conceptually as well as in practice, continuous assessment provides feedback to children and teachers. Such feedback provides information which is used for purposes of improving on the child’s performance or modifying the content, context and methods of teaching, as well as in making a variety of other decisions.
The National Policy on Education (2004) defined Continuous Assessment as a mechanism whereby the final grading of a student in the cognitive, affective and psychomotor domain takes account, in a systematic way of all is performances, during a given period of schooling.
Wikipedia (2015), define Financial Accounting (or financial accountancy) as the field of accounting that is concerned with the summary, analysis and reporting of financial transactions pertaining to a business. This involves the preparation of financial statement available for public consumption. Stockholders, suppliers, banks, employees, government agencies, business owners and other stakeholders are example of people interested in receiving such information for decision making.
The performance level of students in senior secondary schools in Continuous Assessment and SSCE (WAEC) are based on different grades. The pattern of grading in Nigeria SSCE is such that distinction grade is represented by A, Credit grade is represented by C4 and C6 the ordinary pass is represented by D7 and E8 while failure represented by F9. Adeyemi (2010) mention that it is only the grades of distinction and credit that are required for Nigeria University Admission and candidate must have at least credit in five subjects in a related area including English language in order to qualify for admission.
In order to assist the students, teachers should improve the teaching/learning situation for better and consistent performance of student in senior secondary schools in Ikere Local Government area of Ekiti state, it is therefore necessary to find out the relationship between Continuous Assessment and students performance in SSCE financial accounts.
Statement of Problem
The research work is designed to investigate continuous assessment as a good predictor of actual performance of student in Accounting Education. This study will examine the problem of the implementation of the continuous assessment in Accounting Education encountered by lecturers in College of Education Ikere Ekiti, Ekiti State.
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