Effects of School Location on Students’ Achievement in Photosynthesis Based on Concept Mapping Instructional Strategy

Emmanuel Bizimana 1 * , Dieudonné Mutangana 2, Adrian Mwesigye 3
More Detail
1 African Centre of Excellence for Innovative Teaching and Learning Mathematics and Science, College of Education, University Rwanda, RWANDA
2 Department of Biology, College of Science and Technology, University Rwanda, RWANDA
3 Department of Educational Foundations and Psychology, Mbarara University of Science & Technology, UGANDA
* Corresponding Author
Eurasian Journal of Science and Environmental Education, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp. 1-10. https://doi.org/10.30935/ejsee/12139
OPEN ACCESS   161 Views   86 Downloads
Download Full Text (PDF)


Despite years of research, students’ difficulties in understanding and retention of photosynthesis concept have persisted among secondary school students, especially in rural areas. Consequently, this study examined the effect of school location on lower secondary school students’ academic achievement in photosynthesis based on the concept mapping (CM) instructional strategy. The design of the study was a non-randomized pre-test, post-test control group quasi-experimental. The population of the study was 6,708 students from which a sample of 192 students was purposively sampled from four schools. Photosynthesis achievement test with the reliability value of 0.82 determined using the Kuder-Richardson 21-Formula was used for data collection. Data were mainly analyzed using mean and standard deviations to answer the research questions while analysis of covariance was used to test the hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. Among others, the result showed no significant difference between rural and urban students’ achievement taught photosynthesis using the CM (F(1, 91)=2.340, p=.130>.05). Based on the findings, it was recommended among other things that the CM should be adopted by biology teachers in secondary schools as an instructional strategy and that faculties and colleges of education in various schools of higher learning should ensure that CM is included as a viable alternative strategy of teaching biology.


Bizimana, E., Mutangana, D., & Mwesigye, A. (2022). Effects of School Location on Students’ Achievement in Photosynthesis Based on Concept Mapping Instructional Strategy. Eurasian Journal of Science and Environmental Education, 2(1), 1-10. https://doi.org/10.30935/ejsee/12139


  • Abamba, E. I., & Esiekpe, L. E. (2021). Comparative effects of mind and concept mappings on students’ academic achievement and retention of the concepts of radioactivity and electrolysis in senior secondary school science in Delta State, Nigeria. Vers State University Journal of Education, 24(1), 1-12.
  • Aboho, D. A., Agbidye, A., & Asooso, L. N. (2013). Developing curriculum on climate change at secondary school level in Nigeria. Nigerian Journal of Curriculum Studies, 20(2), 47-64.
  • Agaba, K. C. (2013). Effect of concept mapping instructional strategy on students’ retention in biology. African Education Indices, 5(1), 73-80.
  • Agboghoroma, T. E. (2014). Mastery learning approach on secondary students’ integrated science achievement. British Journal of Education, 2(7), 80-88.
  • Ajaja, O. P. (2013). Which strategy best suits biology teaching? Lecturing, concept mapping, cooperative learning, or learning cycle? Electronic Journal of Science Education, 17(1), 20-21.
  • Alordiah, C. O., Akpadaka, G., & Oviogbodu, C. O. (2015). The influence of gender, school location, and socio-economic status on students’ academic achievement in mathematics. Journal of Education and Practice, 6(17), 130-136.
  • Ariaga, B. A., & Nwanekezi, A. U. (2018). Concept mapping strategy and its effects on students’ performance in senior secondary school organic chemistry in the Imo State of Nigeria. International Journal of Scientific Research in Education, 11(10), 797-809.
  • Arnold, M. L., Newman, J. H., Gaddy, B. B., & Dean, C. B. (2005). A look at the condition of rural education research: Setting a direction for future research. Journal of Research in Rural Education, 20(6), 1-25.
  • Auta, A. (2015). Effects of concept mapping and inquiry strategies on achievement and creativity among colleges of education physics students in North-East Nigeria [Unpublished masters’ disseration]. Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
  • Awodun, A. O., & Oyeniyi, A. D. (2018). Influence of school location on students’ academic achievement in junior secondary school basic science in Ekiti State, Nigeria. Journal of Emerging Technologies and Innovative Research, 5(2), 23-27.
  • Bennell, P., & Ntagaramba, J. (2008). Teacher motivation and incentives in Rwanda: A situational analysis and recommended priority actions. Kigali Rwanda Education NGO Cooperation Platform. https://www.paulbennell.co.uk/research/teacher-motivation-and-incentives-in-rwanda-a-situational-analysis-and-recommended-priority-actions-with-j-ntagaramba/
  • Bizimana, E., Mutangana, D., & Mwesigye, A. (2022). Performance analysis of biology education under the implementation of lower secondary school biology-competence-based curriculum: Policy implications. Interdisciplinary Journal of Environmental and Science Education, 18(1), 1-12. https://doi.org/10.21601/ijese/11331
  • Bot, T., & Eze, J. (2016). Comparative effects of concept mapping and cooperative learning strategies on senior secondary school students’ achievement in mathematics-trigonometry in Kano State, Nigeria. European Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 4(1), 56-66. https://doi.org/10.30935/scimath/9453
  • Chang, C. C., Yeh, T. K., & Shih, C. M. (2016). The effects of integrating computer-based concept mapping for physics learning in junior high school. EURASIA Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, 12(9), 2531-2542. https://doi.org/10.12973/eurasia.2016.1284a
  • Cimer, A. (2012). What makes biology learning difficult and effective: Students’ views. Educational Research and Reviews, 7, 61-71.
  • Creswell, J. (2014). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed method approaches. SAGE.
  • Dashne, A. S., & Sinaa, A. A. (2019). The effect of using concept mapping strategy on the achievement of eighth-grade school students in biology subject in Erbil city. Zanco Journal of Humanity Sciences, 23(2960), 127-147. https://doi.org/10.21271/zjhs.23.5.7
  • Ellah, K. E., & Ita, P. M. (2017). Correlational relationship between school location and students’ academic performance in the English language in Nigerian secondary schools. International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications, 7(9), 381-384.
  • Etobro, A. B., & Fabinu, O. E. (2017). Students’ perceptions of difficult concepts in biology in senior secondary schools in Lagos State. Global Journal of Educational Research, 16(2), 139-147. https://doi.org/10.4314/gjedr.v16i2.8
  • Fives, H., & DiDonato-Barnes, N. (2013). Classroom test construction: The power of a table of specifications. Practical Assessment, Research, and Evaluation, 18(3), 1-7.
  • Hadiprayitno, G., Muhlis, & Kusmiyati. (2019). Problems in learning biology for senior high schools in Lombok Island. Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 1241, 012054. https://doi.org/10.1088/1742-6596/1241/1/012054
  • Harerimana, J., & Toyin, A. O. (2017). In-service education programs for secondary school teachers and students’ academic performance: A case study of Nyarugenge district in Rwanda. Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 22(2), 100-115. https://doi.org/10.9790/0837-220205100115
  • Hsieh, S. W., Ho, S. C., Wu, M. P., & Ni, C. Y. (2016). The effects of concept map-oriented gesture-based teaching system on learners’ learning performance and cognitive load in an earth science course. EURASIA Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, 12(3), 621-635. https://doi.org/10.12973/eurasia.2016.1235a
  • Huang, M. Y., Tu, H. Y., Wang, W. Y., Chen, J. F., Yu, Y. T., & Chou, C. C. (2017). Effects of cooperative learning and concept mapping intervention on critical thinking and basketball skills in elementary school. Thinking Skills and Creativity, 23, 207-216. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tsc.2017.01.002
  • Iserameiya, F. E., & Ibeneme, O. T. (2018). Effect of mastery learning strategy on junior secondary school students’ academic achievement in basic technology in Edo State, Nigeria. International Journal of New Technology and Research, 4(3), 95-101.
  • Iwanger, S. R., & Eriba, J. O. (2018). Effect of concept mapping-guided discovery integrated instructional approach on basic science students’ attitude, achievement, and retention. International Journal of Case Studies, 7(7), 44-53. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3540349
  • Jack, G. U. (2013). Concept mapping and guided inquiry as effective techniques for teaching difficult concepts in chemistry: Effect on students’ academic achievement. Journal of Education and Practice, 4(5), 9-16.
  • Joda, F. M. (2019). Effects of instructional scaffolding strategy on senior secondary biology students’ academic achievement and retention in Taraba State, Nigeria. Science Journal of Education, 2(2), 269-275. https://doi.org/10.31014/aior.1993.02.02.59
  • Joda, F. M., & Mohamed, A. A. (2017). Effect of guided inquiry teaching method on senior secondary school biology students’ academic achievement and retention in Yola Education Zone, Adamawa State, Nigeria. Multidisciplinary Journal of Science, Technology and Vocational Education, 5(1), 89-96.
  • Johnson, M. P. (2016). Photosynthesis. Essays in Biochemistry, 60(3), 255-273. https://doi.org/10.1042/EBC20160016
  • Kambaila, C. M., Kasali, G., & Kayamba, F. (2019). Assessing the effects of biology practical activities on academic performance of senior secondary school students. Journal of Education and Practice, 10(20), 116-121. https://doi.org/10.7176/JEP/10-14-15
  • Kyado, J. J., O. Abah, C., & Samba, R. M. A. (2019). Effect of collaborative concept mapping instructional strategy on secondary students’ achievement in difficult biology concepts. American Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities, 4(3), 434-447. https://doi.org/10.20448/801.43.434.447
  • Macmillan, M. J. (2012). School location versus academic achievement in physics: Does computer-assisted instruction (CAI) has any effect? Journal of Educational and Social Research, 2(10), 162-168.
  • Martins-Omole, M. I., Yusuf, H. O., & Guga, A. (2016). Effects of concept mapping and experimental techniques in teaching biology in secondary schools in Federal Capital Territory Abuja, Nigeria. European Journal of Education Studies, 2(6), 119-130.
  • Métioui, A., Matoussi, F., & Trudel, L. (2016). The teaching of photosynthesis in secondary school: A history of the scientific approach. Journal of Biological Education, 50(3), 275-289. https://doi.org/10.1080/00219266.2015.1085427
  • Mokiwa, H. O., & Agbenyeku, E. U. (2019). Impact of activity-based teaching strategy on gifted students: A case of selected junior secondary schools in Nigeria. Journal for the Education of Gifted Young Scientists, 7(3), 421-434. https://doi.org/10.17478/jegys.529919
  • Nasution, M. K. (2018). Student assessment and misconceptions of photosynthesis: A notion of shifting perspective. Journal As-Salam, 2(2), 106-112. https://doi.org/10.37249/as-salam.v2i2.39
  • Ndihokubwayo, K. (2017). Research on improvised experiment materials for science lesson in Rwanda [Unpublished master’s thesis]. Hiroshima University.
  • Ndihokubwayo, K., Uwamahoro, J., & Ndayambaje, I. (2020). Implementation of the competence-based learning in Rwandan physics classrooms: First assessment based on the reformed teaching observation protocol. EURASIA Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, 16(9), 1-8. https://doi.org/10.29333/ejmste/8395
  • Nizeyimana, G., & Nkiriye, I. (2015). A baseline survey on barriers to quality of basic education in Rwanda: The case study of Kicukiro, Gicumbi, and Rwamagana districts (final report, March 2015). Rwanda Education for All Coalition.
  • Nnenna, G. E., & Adukwu, B. C. (2018). Influence of gender and school location on senior secondary school student’s achievement in biology in Agbani Education Zone of Enugu State. Journal of Education and Practice, 9(21), 45-51.
  • Novak, J. D., & Gowin, D. B. (1984). Learning how to learn. Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139173469
  • Novak, J. D., & Gowin, D. B. (1994). Learning how to learn. Cambridge University Press.
  • Nsengimana, T., Habimana, S., & Mutarutinya, V. (2017). Mathematics and science teachers’ understanding and practices of learner-centred education in nine secondary schools from three districts in Rwanda. Rwandan Journal of Education, 4(1), 55-68.
  • Nsengimana, V. (2021). Implementation of the competence-based curriculum in Rwanda: Opportunities and challenges. Rwandan Journal of Education, 5(1), 129-138.
  • Ntawiha, P. (2016). Educational inputs and their implications for output in public secondary schools in Nyarugenge and Nyamasheke districts, Rwanda [Unpublished doctoral dissertation]. Kenyatta University.
  • Nworgu, B. G., Ugwuanyi, C. S., & Nworgu, L. N. (2013). School location and gender as factors in senior secondary school students’ school locatıon and gender as factors in senıor secondary school students’ conceptual understandıng of force and motıon. International Journal of Educational Research and Technology, 4(4), 71-76.
  • Nzabalirwa, W., & Nkiliye, I. (2012). A study on the socio-economic conditions of teachers in primary and secondary public schools in Rwanda: A case study of Bugesera, Nyarugenge, and Ruhango Districts. Rwandan Journal of Education, 1(1), 72-83.
  • Ogonnaya, U. P., & Abonyi, O. S. (2016). Effects of concept mapping instruction approach on students’ achievement in basic science. Journal of Education and Practice, 7(8), 79-84.
  • Okorie, E. U., & Ezeh, D. N. (2016). Influence of gender and location on students’ achievement in chemical bonding. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 7(3), 309-318. https://doi.org/10.5901/mjss.2016.v7n3p309
  • Olarewaju, A., & Awofala, A. (2011). Effect of concept mapping strategy on students’ achievement in junior secondary school mathematics. International Journal of Mathematics Trends and Technology, 2(3), 11-16.
  • Olusola, R., & Omotade, A. (2014). Impact of school location on academic achievement of science students in senior secondary school certificate examination. International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications, 4(9), 4-7.
  • Olutola, A. T. (2016). Assessing students’ performance in senior school certificate multiple-choice test in biology. Liceo Journal of Higher Education Research, 12(1), 11-20. https://doi.org/10.15415/iie.2016.41001
  • Onuoha, J. C., Ejimonye, J. C., & Eneogu, N. (2016). Effect of concept mapping instructional strategy on students’ achievement and interest in economics in secondary schools in Enugu Education Zone. Transylvanian Review, 24(8), 1222-1230.
  • Qarareh, A. O. (2017). The effect of using concept mapping in teaching on the achievement of fifth graders in science. Studies on Home and Community Science, 4(3), 155-160. https://doi.org/10.1080/09737189.2010.11885314
  • REB. (2015). Ordinary level mathematics and science syllabi. Rwanda Education Board.
  • Ronfeldt, M., Kwok, A., & Reininger, M. (2014). Teachers’ preferences to teach underserved students. Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, 51(9), 995-1030. https://doi.org/10.1177/0042085914553676
  • Rubagiza, J., Umutoni, J., & Kaleeba, A. (2016). Teachers as agents of change: Promoting peacebuilding and social cohesion in schools in Rwanda. Education as Change, 20(3), 202-224. https://doi.org/10.17159/1947-9417/2016/1533
  • Sakiyo, J., & Waziri, K. (2015). Concept mapping strategy: An effective tool for improving students’ academic achievement in biology. Journal of Education in Science, Environment and Health, 1(1), 56. https://doi.org/10.21891/jeseh.06591
  • Sakiyo, J., & Waziri, K. (2016). Concept mapping strategy: An effective tool for improving students’ academic achievement in biology. Journal of Education in Science, Environment and Health, 1(1), 56-62. https://doi.org/10.21891/jeseh.06591
  • Schmid, R. F., & Telaro, G. (2018). Concept mapping as an instructional strategy for high school biology. The Journal of Educational Research, 84(2), 78-85. https://doi.org/10.1080/00220671.1990.10885996
  • Sing, I. S., & Moono, K. (2015). The effect of using concept maps as study tools on achievement in chemistry at the tertiary level. Journal of Education and Practice, 6(15), 106-116.
  • Tumwebaze, P. (2016, July 6). Performance: Why distance to school matters. The New Times. http://www.newtimes.co.rw
  • Udoh, A. I., & Udo, M. E. (2020). Effects of blended learning and expository instructional strategies on senior secondary school students’ performance based on the concept of atomic. International Journal of Multidisciplinary and Current Educational Research, 2(5), 361-371.
  • Umar, O. J. (2017). A comparative study of facilities and students’ performances in biology in urban and rural schools: A case study of Adavi Local Government Area of Kogi State. International Journal of Education and Evaluation, 3(6), 1-6.
  • Umar, U. S., & Samuel, R. I. (2018). School location as a correlate of students’ achievement in basic science. International Journal of Innovative Education Research, 6(3), 14-17.
  • Wasonga, V. E. (2015). Effects of concept mapping based instruction on students’ achievement in physics in public secondary schools, Nairobi County, Kenya [Unpublished masters’ dissertation], Kenyatta University.
  • Woldeamanuel, Y. W., Abate, N. T., & Berhane, D. E. (2020). Effectiveness of concept mapping-based teaching methods on grade eight students’ conceptual understanding of photosynthesis at Ewket Fana Primary School, Bahir Dar, Ethiopia. EURASIA Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, 16(12), 1-16. https://doi.org/10.29333/ejmste/9276
  • Yusuf, M. A., & Adigun, J. T. (2010). The influence of school sex, location, and type on students’ academic performance. International Journal of Educational Sciences, 2(2), 81-85. https://doi.org/10.1080/09751122.2010.11889992
  • Zeidan, A. (2010). The relationship between grade 11 Palestinian attitudes toward biology and their perceptions of the biology learning environment. International Journal of Science Education, 8, 783-800. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10763-009-9185-8