Gicharu, R.N., Sindabi, A.M.
Abstract: Adolescence is an important developmental period when the young person lays the foundation for adult life, it is also a very trying time for the adolescent as he experiences both emotional and physical changes that can negatively influence his life. The academic performance of adolescent students in Nakuru municipality has been deteriorating especially among the adolescent students and the purpose of this study was to investigate on whether adolescence developmental changes (emotions, social behaviour and physical growth) could influence the students academic performance in public secondary schools of Nakuru municipality. The study adapted an ex-post facto research design. Stratified random sampling was used, where form three students in four schools formed the strata and a sample of 375 students were randomly selected. Fifty one teacher counsellors were also purposively selected for this study. A 25-item survey instrument was used where the students were asked to rate each item on a strongly disagree (1) to strongly agree (5) Likert scale. The data was analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics with the aid of the Statistical Package for the Social Science (SPSS). The results of the study demonstrated that academic performance of adolescent students was significantly (p 0.05) influenced negatively by their emotional behaviour (= -0.776), social behaviour (= -0.661) and physical growth (=-0.156). The findings of this study are significant they may help teacher counsellors and school administrators improve students academic performance. It is anticipated that the Ministry of Education (MOE) policy makers may develop programmes through which students may be helped to go through adolescence smoothly and be able to achieve their academic goals.
Keywords: Academic performance, Adolescence, Adolescent, Emotional behavior, Influence