Effect of Self-Concept on Academic Performance of Students in Selected Adult Remedial Classes in Lagos State
The present work tried principally to provide answers to the following questions:- 1. Can learners' self-concept be raised through positive reinforcement of their ego? 2. Would learners with raised self-concept perform significantly better at written examinations than learners whose self-concept has not been raised? 3. Would male learners with raised self-concept perform significantly better at written examinations than female learners whose self-concept has been raised? 4. Would younger learners with raised self-concept perform significantly better at written examinations than older learners whose self-concept have been raised? Before answering these questions, it was retained that a person's self-concept is made up of four aspects namely, the social aspect, the emotional aspect, the physical aspect and the academic aspect. Since the search in the literature revealed that valid self-concept instruments have so far eluded researchers in the domain of self-concept, and since it was found that the Nigeria adult education literature shows a grave lack of information on the self-concept of adult learners and on the methods for measuring the adult learner's self-concept, an inventory called the Learner's Self-concept Inventory was constructed for the purpose of carrying out this study. This inventory which was developed with the help of three psychologists (one of whom is in the field of adult education) had its construction guided by four major theories derived from the literature that discusses the measurement of the phenomenon known as self-concept. These theories were that: 1. Self-concept is a reflexive phenomenon. 2. Self-concept operates mainly indirectly. 3. The concept of self is best elicited through the generation of a semantic field appropriate for the population to be studied. 4. A multi-scaled self-concept instrument elicits most meaningfully and most validly a respondent's concept of self. After the development of the Learner's Self-concept Inventory, this study moved into manipulating subjects' self-concept levels by positively reinforcing their ego. Three major findings emerged from the study. It was found that: 1. Learners' self-concept can indeed be raised through positive reinforcement of their ego. 2. Learners with raised self-concept performed significantly better at written examinations than learners whose self-concept was not raised. 3. Male learners did not show a significantly higher self-concept or academic performance than female learners. Finally, two theoretical implications of the findings of the present study are that: 1. There exists a positive relationship between high academic self-concept and high academic performance. 2. There exists a positive relationship between high social self-concept and high academic performance.