Kenyan Secondary Teachers’ and Principals’ Perspectives and Strategies on Teaching and Learning with Large Classes

Sophia M. Ndethiu, Joanna O Masingila, Marguerite K. Miheso-O’Connor, David W. Khatete, Katie L. Heath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The reality that teachers in developing countries teach large, and even overcrowded classes, is daunting and one that may not go away any time soon. Class size in Kenyan public secondary schools is generally 40–59 students per class. This article reports initial findings on teachers’ and principals’ perspectives related to large classes. We used questionnaires, interviews and classroom observation data to examine teachers’ and principals’ perspectives regarding their capacities to teach and manage large classes; what challenges large class sizes present; and what additional supports teachers and principals perceive to be necessary. Both teachers and principals reported that the current class size has a negative impact on teaching and learning. Additionally, both teachers and principals cited a need for more support in the form of (a) professional development; (b) workload reduction; and (c) increased resources. These areas of support could help to mediate the effects of large class size, including an almost sole reliance on lecturing with little teacher-to-student and studentto-student interaction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-29
Number of pages29
JournalAfrica Education Review
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Apr 7 2017

Keywords

  • class size
  • effects of large class size on teaching and learning
  • large class pedagogy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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