This unit is additional to the previous. it also adds hints to various education methods you can adopt to enhance your teaching


Types of Teaching Methods

The Field Trip

This method involves taking learners on an excursion outside the classroom for the purpose of making relevant observation for the purpose of obtaining Technological and Vocational Information. Field trip as a method can be used in teaching Business Studies, Sciences and some art subjects like Yoruba, History, etc.

The Advantages of the Field Trip

• It allows the students to engage fully in the activities of the study.
• It sharpens the students observational abilities.

• It helps to add reality to and verify how the area of coverage operates in practice.
• Field trip is useful in developing all senses of the students.

• It provides opportunity for students to identify ways of spending leisure time profitably.

• Things that cannot be brought to the classroom can be observed and studied e. g. ecological succession, oceans, etc.

• Through direct contact with different occupations provided by field trips students learn and develop an appreciation of the “world” of work outside of the school in relation to school work.

• Experience gained during a field trip can motivate students to read about what they have observed, so as to harmonize actual field experiences with information gathered from textbooks.

 Disadvantages of the Field Trip
• Arranging a good field trip necessitates careful planning. Not only does it consume a considerable amount of time, but transportation arrangements are often difficult and may be expensive.

• Class supervision may prove difficult since students tend to move round.

• If not properly planned and organized, the field trip becomes a waste of time and resources and takes away
from valuable learning activities.

• Even after the most thoughtful preparation and planning, accidents can and do occur in field trips.

• A field trip may create conflicts with other classes.

The Individual Instructional Method

This method is a programmed instruction in which the learning programmes are presented in carefully structured steps and the steps depend on the individual student and the nature of materials to be learned. For example the pace of learning depends on individual students.

Advantages of the Individualized Instructional Method

• It allows the student to go at his own pace.
• It makes the student to participate.

• It gives the teacher quick knowledge of individual student i.e. whether the lesson is understood or not, since test is usually given at the end of every lesson.

• It can be used effectively to make up for lack of background by particular member of the class.

• It reduces a student’s anxiety as he depends on himself.

Disadvantages of the Individualized Instructional Method
• It is time consuming.
• It is highly demanding of equipments and materials.
• It requires very little or no interaction among the students.

The Laboratory Method

This is an activity method designed to be carried out by an individual student or a group of students for the purpose of making personal observations from experiments in which students can get conclusions by themselves.

 Advantages of the Laboratory Method

• Learning through this method extends and reinforces theoretical learning through reality.

• Laboratory method offers students the opportunity to develop scientific attitudes such as objectivity, critical
thinking, carefulness, open mindedness etc.

• Because the method implies learning by doing students tend to be more interested because of active involvement.

• Students become familiar with how scientific knowledge is acquired by performing experiments, recording observations and results, summarizing data and drawing conclusions.

• Through laboratory method, the student learns how to handle apparatus and other instruments, thereby
developing manipulative skills.

• Laboratory method promotes problem solving and self reliance.

• Getting involved in laboratory activities can also enable students to learn much about the inter-relationship between science and technology.

Disadvantages of the Laboratory method

• It can be expensive if separate equipment and materials have to be provided.

• It is time-consuming because of the careful planning and preparation required.

• Acquisition of skills which results from exposure to the laboratory method, is of questionable value as objectives for
some of the students who will have little use of them later.

• It is an inefficient practice of teaching where ordinary telling method or simple demonstration is perfectly adequate.

Inductive and the Deductive Methods

The Inductive Method

The inductive method of teaching begins with particular examples and from the examination of the examples, definition are established. The teacher tries to draw out from the student the already acquired knowledge. This is done through questioning. Also the teacher tries to relate the knowledge gained is one subject area to another through description of similaries.

Characteristics of the Inductive Method

• It proceeds from the known to the unknown.

• It proceeds from the particular to the general.

• It proceeds from the concrete to the abstract.
• It is an analytic method or process.

• It is a method of discovery.

The Deductive Method

In deductive method a statement or a rule or formula is given. From this rule or formula, the teacher begins to work back to a particular case. For example a formula in mathematics. That is the whole is given and the students are made to see the parts that build it up.

Characteristics of the Deductive Method

• It starts from the general rule and proceeds to the particular.

• It is a dogmatic assertion like Christian creed.

• It is a method of instruction whereby the general rule is at first vague to the pupils, but it becomes clearer after the
teacher has skillfully and fully expressed it.

• It proceeds from indefinite to definite.

Comparison between the Inductive and Deductive Methods


Open Education

Open Education is that system of education which attempts to make education accessible to all in a flexible mode such that learner

• learn at their own pace and in a place convenient for them

• use specially prepared self-learning materials

• may also make use of electronic media like radio, television, audio-visual materials, telephones, computers, etc.

This educational system opens door of educational opportunity to all and sundry, regardless of age, sec, race etc; in particular. The target groups and learners in an open educational system. One such example is the National Open University of Nigeria, Lagos.

Choices available to an Open system learner include:

• Choice of where to learn – whether at home, in the library, place of work or some other place without restriction of the formal school system.

• The choice of when to learn – as there is no imposed time for learners or time frame for completion as obtained in the formal school system.

Advantages of Open Education

• Less time is wasted. The time and the expenses of traveling to and from classroom or training centers are eliminated.
• Open education ensures that the learners avoid unnecessary information.
• Since it is an individualized instruction, it affords learners the opportunity to learn at their own pace.

• It leads to reduction in cost of accommodation.

• Trainers and lecturers have much more time to devote to other things.
• It makes education available to more people who would never have pursued formal education.

• Through open education, time off from job or duty may be reduced.
• Less pressure is exerted on school facilities. (classroom, hostels, toilets etc).
• It ensures that there is no forum for students riot as learners are not together. 

Disadvantages of Open Education

• Students miss out on the help they could have had from fellow students in a group study.
• It is difficult to evaluate learners as compared with the conventional school system.
• Where means of communication are not well developed, provision of two-way communication between learners and the open institution may be difficult.

 Criteria for Method Choice

The choice of a teaching method to be used in the classroom encounter depends on many factors. Research has shown that many factors could determine the method a teacher would choose in teaching his lesson. Afolabi (2010) reported the strength of these factors among the eleven he studied in this order;
1. the instructional materials available to the teacher
2. Teacher’s ability and knowledge of the teaching method,
3. The objectives of the lesson or topic
4. The content of the topic or lesson,
5. The attitude of the students
6.The time for the subject
7. The Learners’ activities in the lesson
8. The students’ ability
9. The population of the students
10. The teacher’s feeling or mode and
11. The school environment.

This finding shows that the instructional materials available to the teachers is the most determinant of method choice. This is followed by the teacher’s ability on the knowledge of teaching method.

These factors have close or marginal differences between each other however, the all contributed magnificently as strong factors that determine the method a teacher would use in the selection of his teaching methods


There is no end to the various ways by which human beings learn. More methods of teaching are yet to be unfolded. Teacher-dominated and students dominated approaches to teaching are two ends of the spectrum from which a balance must be struck in order to be able to evaluate teaching and learning processes. Efforts should be made to choose adequate and appropriate methods in line with the curriculum objectives.

Adapted from School of Education, National Open University of Nigeria


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