Botswana teachers's level of needs satisfaction as predictors of students' mathematics performance in 2015 TIMSS
PublisherUniversity of Botswana, www.ub.bw
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For any nation, poor and deteriorating performance in mathematics by her learners in an age where skills in Science and Technology are necessary for economic growth spell doom to her development hopes and efforts. Countless factors have been analyzed to explain why some students attain higher levels of academic achievement than other students. The decline of Math performance in senior secondary schools in Botswana has been of a great concern to the nation at large. Among the attributory factors to this poor Math performance, scrutinizing teachers’ influence have lagged behind. The purpose of this study therefore, was to determine how the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory acted on teachers to predict students’ Math performance in Botswana. The four driving objectives of the study were; firstly to establish the influence of teacher’s characteristics, secondly to find the relationship between Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs on teachers and thirdly the extent at which the needs predict students’ performance when teacher’s characteristics are controlled and finally to find out the best predictor of teacher’s needs on students math performance. The study was quantitative in nature and adopted a correlation research design. Secondary data analysis was used from the Botswana data of 2015 Trends in Mathematics and Science Study. TIMSS employed a two-stage random sampling method and the sample was made up of 160 schools, 169 teachers and 5964 students. TIMSS teacher questionnaires were used as a method of data collection. Consent from relevant authorities, confidentiality and privacy were assured and data was used for the intended purpose. The Statistical Packages for Social Sciences was used to analyze data. Validity as well as the Reliability was assured from the Cronbach’ test. Factor analysis was used to derive the independent variables (teacher’s needs) whilst the Pearson product moment correlation coefficient, One Independent T-Test, One-Way ANOVA and the Hierarchical multi regression methods were used to test the hypotheses. The findings of this study showed that Teacher’s background characteristics positively influenced students’ performance except teachers’ gender. Teachers’ needs had a positive tatistical significant relationship with students’ Math performance. As they all predicted performance, the basic needs were the best predictors of students’ Math performance. Based on these results, appropriate discussions and recommendations were made.