Indiscipline Among Senior Secondary School Students: The Contributions of Home Behaviour Control and Religiosity

30

Abstract

The study investigated the indiscipline of senior secondary school students and the contribution of home behaviour control and religiosity in Cross River State, Nigeria. An ex-post facto research design was adopted for the study. The population comprised 62,501 senior secondary school students in three educational zones. A multistage sampling procedure was adopted to select 1250 students from 30 randomly sampled public and private secondary schools. The Student Opinion Questionnaire (SOQ) was used for data collection. Experts in measurement and evaluation and educational psychology validated the instrument. The test-retest reliability coefficient ranged from 0.78-0.91. The data collected were analysed using one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). The results revealed that home behaviour control and home religiosity significantly influenced secondary school students' indiscipline behaviour. Specifically, students from firm homes and with high levels of religiosity generally exhibited lower indiscipline behaviour across all the dimensions. In comparison, those from lax homes and homes with low levels of religiosity manifested higher levels of indiscipline behaviour. These findings align with role theory, which suggests that individuals' behaviour is shaped by their immediate social environment. Policymakers can use these results to develop programs that promote positive behaviour by encouraging the development of a strong religious foundation in the home and promoting clear expectations and rules for behaviour.

General Information

Keywords: ANOVA; behavioural control; educational; legal; moral; personal; safety

Journal rubric: Developmental Psychology

Article type: scientific article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/pse.2024290206

Received: 20.02.2023

Accepted:

For citation: Abang K.B., Owan V.J., Ojini R.A., Otu B.D., Anagbogu G.E., Beshel C.A. Indiscipline Among Senior Secondary School Students: The Contributions of Home Behaviour Control and Religiosity. Psikhologicheskaya nauka i obrazovanie = Psychological Science and Education, 2024. Vol. 29, no. 2, pp. 76–95. DOI: 10.17759/pse.2024290206.

Full text

Introduction

The primary objective of sending children to school is to facilitate their education and foster discipline, as schools serve as pivotal institutions for knowledge dissemination and character development across cognitive, affective, and psychomotor domains, thereby offering a comprehensive educational experience [8; 19; 20; 46]. Regrettably, there is a prevailing trend of disciplinary challenges within the educational framework, notably within secondary education systems worldwide [11; 62]. A significant proportion of secondary school students exhibit a lack of reverence for authority and a deficiency in demonstrating responsibility through adherence, dedication, or allegiance to established regulations [37; 38; 59]. Scholars have conceptualised indiscipline as actions that contravene established school policies and protocols, thus impeding educational institutions' seamless and organised operation [1; 28; 33; 39]. The dimensions of school indiscipline encompass moral, personal, legal, safety, and educational aspects [1].

Moral indiscipline in schools encompasses violations of rules and regulations, particularly regarding sexual misconduct, deceit, and other behaviours detrimental to the school environment [31]. Personal indiscipline signifies a failure to exercise self-control and adhere to institutional guidelines, evident in habitual tardiness, incomplete assignments, dress code violations, class disruptions, and engagement in disruptive or unhealthy behaviours [44]. The prevalent rudeness, disobedience, and lack of respect for authority figures among students underscore the extent of personal indiscipline [44]. Legal indiscipline entails students breaching governmental or institutional laws and regulations, including theft, drug abuse, assault, harassment, cyberbullying, vandalism, and record falsification [53]. Safety indiscipline among students entails failing to adhere to safety regulations established by educational institutions or the community, endangering themselves and others by disregarding safety protocols, participating in risky activities, and neglecting precautions. Educational indiscipline occurs when students engage in behaviours that hinder academic performance, disrupt classroom dynamics, and negatively impact the learning atmosphere, such as absenteeism, tardiness, classroom disruptions, cheating, and plagiarism [9; 21; 45]. School indiscipline harms students, staff, management, and society regardless of the form [1].

In the past decade, extensive research has focused on addressing indiscipline in schools, with studies aiming to understand contributing factors. Previous research has examined the causes and types of indiscipline (e.g., [17; 43; 61), including investigations into factors specific to African schools (e.g., [4; 7; 13; 57]). Notably, studies (such as [13; 17]) have highlighted the environment and home as crucial influences on students' discipline. However, there is a dearth of quantitative research on the extent of the impacts of these factors, necessitating further investigation to quantify their effects on student behaviour. Previous research has established a link between students' indiscipline and academic performance [32; 40; 50], consistently showing that indiscipline is correlated with lower academic achievement [5; 10; 18; 36]. However, there is a gap in understanding of the factors driving students' indiscipline. While existing studies demonstrate the association between indiscipline and academic outcomes, there is limited research on the underlying causes of this association. This study addresses this gap by investigating the influence of home behaviour and religiosity on students' indiscipline. The study aimed to inform the development of effective interventions promoting school discipline by exploring the relationships among home behaviour, home religiosity, and students' indiscipline.

Theoretical grounds and literature review

Role theory is a foundational framework for this study, highlighting the significance of social roles in influencing individual behaviour and interactions. It underscores that individuals acquire and internalise social roles through socialisation, with society comprising a network of such roles [24]. The theory posits that social roles are crucial in organising society and maintaining social order. According to role theory, disciplined behaviour is a product of individuals' participation in interaction processes, with sociological perspectives emphasising the impact of these interactions on shaping individuals' actions [24].

Role theory holds relevance to this study, as it underscores the influence of social roles on individual behaviour and interactions. Specifically, this research centres on the roles of parents or guardians in shaping children's behaviour through their religiosity and household conduct. According to role theory, parents or guardians fulfil social roles characterised by specific patterns of behaviour and attitudes, which they transmit to their children through socialisation. Inadequate performance of these roles by parents or guardians may lead to failure to instil positive values and behaviours in their children, potentially contributing to students' indiscipline in school. This study aimed to enhance our understanding of how social roles influence individual behaviour and interactions by investigating the predictive roles of home religiosity and household behaviour in students' indiscipline.

Home behaviour

The role of the home in behaviour regulation involves the disciplinary approach adopted by parents [35]. Its objective is to instil in the child a sense of expected behaviours while fostering self-control and self-direction to govern their actions [36]. Isangedighi, referenced in [12], delineates parents' three primary behaviour control techniques: stern, firm, and lax. Parents who use stern behaviour control treat obedience as a fundamental virtue and curtail a child's autonomy [11; 37]. In such households, children receive explicit directives with limited room for personal initiative [9]. Consequently, under this behaviour control paradigm, children seek socialisation primarily among peers and perceive their home environment as hostile, inducing fear, dependence on parental authority, and irrational submission [16].

Firm behaviour entails employing various strategies to guide children in fulfilling their responsibilities, with disciplinary measures as a last resort [23]. Within firm home behaviour control, parents utilise explanations, discussions, and reasoning to aid children in comprehending the rationale behind expected behaviours [34]. Punitive actions are reserved for instances where a child's failure to comply with expectations appears unintentional. Firm parents adopt a democratic approach and establish boundaries for their children, engaging in reasoned discourse as they mature [29]. These parents employ judicious authority and substantial reinforcement to promote desirable behaviour [55].

According to Gittins and Hunt [25], lax home behaviour control reflects a laissez-faire approach to discipline characterised by nonchalant permissiveness. Children in such environments often engage in unrestricted behaviour due to the absence of guidance or direction, potentially leading to negative behavioural outcomes [56]. Parents consistently exhibit acceptance, benevolence, and affirmation toward their children's impulses, readily granting them considerable freedom for physical survival [12]. While these parents refrain from directing their children toward socially acceptable behaviours or imposing punitive measures, they allow them to navigate challenging situations without guidance [22].

Past research indicates that adolescents from lax parenting environments are more prone to delinquent behaviour than those from households with firm and stern parenting approaches [6; 30; 47; 48]. Shi and Zhu [53] underscored the role of behaviour control in personality development, self-esteem, discipline, and academic performance. Cutrín et al. [15] supported this notion and revealed that home behaviour control impacted antisocial behaviour. However, Wertz et al. [58] found no substantial association between the home atmosphere and adolescent antisocial behaviour. Obando et al. [44] argued that additional social factors might contribute to adolescents' antisocial conduct.

The cited studies indicate several gaps that warrant attention in the current investigation. First, while these studies imply a correlation between parenting style and adolescent behaviour, they do not specifically explore the impact of home behaviour control on students' discipline within educational settings. Second, variations in the definitions of parenting styles across studies may hinder the comparability of findings. Therefore, a new study should operationalise home behaviour control. Third, some research has suggested that additional social factors may influence adolescent behaviour [44], prompting consideration in future investigations. While certain studies associate permissive parenting styles with heightened levels of deviant behaviour among adolescents [6; 30], others (e.g., [58]) find no significant relationship between the home environment and antisocial behaviour in adolescents. Similarly, Cutrín et al. [15] establish a connection between home behaviour control and antisocial conduct, whereas Obando et al. [44] argue for the influence of other social factors on adolescent antisocial behaviour. These inconsistencies underscore further research's need to elucidate the relationship between home behaviour control and students' discipline.

Home religiosity

Religiosity encompasses individuals' commitment to religious beliefs, principles, and practices [27]. Home religiosity, which includes beliefs about greater power and participation in faith-related activities at home, is influenced by the environment in which children grow and learn [2; 3]. The transmission of religious beliefs across generations can impact health and behaviour, with elements such as attending religious services, engaging in faith-based activities, praying, and studying religious texts being central [42; 52]. Families engaging in religious activities can positively influence children, potentially fostering discipline [14; 52]. However, empirical evidence is needed to support this assertion.

Previous research has identified parental religiosity, family relationship quality, and traditional family structure as key factors influencing offspring religiosity [26; 49]. High levels of religious engagement at home have been associated with reduced delinquency among children [52]. Studies suggest a potential link between religiosity and student discipline. For example, Yakovleva [60] reported that students from religious households were less likely to participate in cult activities. Similarly, other researchers have observed lower levels of antisocial behaviour among pupils from homes with strong religious indoctrination than among those with weaker indoctrination [41; 54].

The cited studies agree that religious practices and moral values significantly impact students' discipline and likelihood of engaging in antisocial behaviour. However, there are discrepancies in the findings, with some suggesting that students from homes with strong religious indoctrination exhibit lower levels of antisocial behaviour, while others suggest the opposite. Thus, further research is necessary to clarify the existing arguments about the role of home religiosity as a predictor of students’ discipline. This study addresses this gap by examining the influence of parental behaviour control on students' discipline.

Hypotheses

Ha1: Home behaviour control significantly influences students' indiscipline behaviour in secondary schools.

Ho1: Home behaviour control does not significantly influence students' indiscipline behaviour in secondary schools.

Ha2: Home religiosity significantly influences students' indiscipline behaviour in secondary schools.

Ho2: Home religiosity does not significantly influence students' indiscipline behaviour in secondary schools.

Methods

Research design

We utilised an ex post facto design, which examines preexisting relationships between variables. Due to ethical and practical constraints, manipulating independent variables such as home behaviour control and religiosity is unfeasible. The ex post facto design allows us to observe the effects of these variables on student indiscipline within natural settings. Furthermore, this approach facilitates the establishment of cause-and-effect relationships by comparing disciplinary behaviours across households with varying levels of behaviour control and religiosity.

Study participants

The population of this study comprised 82,306 senior secondary school students (Males = 42,661; females = 39,654) in the Cross River State, Nigeria. A total of 40,146 students (males = 20,519; females = 19,627) were in public secondary schools, while 42,160 (males = 22,142; females = 20,018) were from private secondary schools. The population distribution of the study participants based on education zone in the state was as follows: Calabar Zone = 17,381 students; Ikom = 12,914 students; and Ogoja Zone = 11,865 students. A multistage sampling method was employed to select the study sample. Initially, schools were stratified across three education zones: Calabar, Ikom, and Ogoja. Subsequently, 6% of the public and private schools in each zone were randomly chosen. This process resulted in the selection of nine schools in Calabar (4 public, 5 private), 11 in Ikom (5 public, 6 private), and 10 in Ogoja (4 public, 6 private), for a total of 30 secondary schools (17 private, 13 public). In the second stage, students were stratified by class, focusing on the SSI and SS II classes. Within each stratum, 2% of the student population was sampled, totalling 1250 students. The sample distribution included 507 students from Calabar (245 public, 262 private), 405 from Ikom (207 public, 198 private), and 338 from Ogoja (156 public, 182 private), comprising 1250 students (608 public, 642 private). A breakdown of the participants' demographic variables is presented in Table 1.

Table 1. Sample distribution of the study

Variable

Levels

Sample distribution across the three education zones

Calabar (n = 507)

Ikom (n = 405)

Ogoja (n = 338)

Total

 

 

Public

Private

Public

Private

Public

Private

Sex

Male

115 (46.94)

125 (47.71)

100 (48.31)

97 (48.99)

73 (46.79)

89 (48.90)

599 (47.92)

 

Female

130 (53.06)

137 (52.29)

107 (51.69)

101 (51.01)

83 (53.21)

93 (51.10)

651 (52.08)

 

Total

245 (48.32)

262 (51.68)

207 (51.11)

198 (48.89)

156 (46.15)

182 (53.85)

1250 (100.0)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Age

< 15 years

31 (12.65)

67 (25.57)

32 (15.46)

78 (39.39)

16 (10.26)

42 (23.08)

266 (21.28)

 

15-18 years

116 (47.35)

108 (41.22)

133 (64.25)

97 (48.99)

93 (59.62)

103 (56.59)

650 (52.00)

 

> 18 yrs

98 (40.00)

87 (33.21)

42 (20.29)

23 (11.62)

47 (30.13)

37 (20.33)

334 (26.72)

 

Total

245 (48.32)

262 (51.68)

207 (51.11)

198 (48.89)

156 (46.15)

182 (53.85)

1250 (100.0)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Class

SS1

90 (36.73)

110 (41.98)

82 (39.61)

81 (40.91)

59 (37.82)

77 (42.31)

499 (39.92)

 

SS2

70 (28.57)

90 (34.35)

65 (31.40)

62 (31.31)

56 (35.90)

44 (21.18)

387 (30.96)

 

SS3

85 (34.69)

62 (23.66)

60 (28.99)

55 (27.78)

41 (26.28)

61 (33.52)

364 (29.12)

 

Total

245 (48.32)

262 (51.68)

207 (51.11)

198 (48.89)

156 (46.15)

182 (53.85)

1250 (100.0)

Note: Percentages are in parentheses

 

 

 

 

 

A power analysis, conducted using G*Power assessed the representativeness of the sample. The objective was to determine the sample size necessary to detect a medium effect size (0.25), with a desired power of 0.80 at a significance level of 0.05 for a one-way ANOVA omnibus test with three groups. The results (see Figure 1) indicate that a minimum sample of 156 respondents is required to achieve 80% confidence in accurately rejecting or accepting the null hypothesis. Given that our sample of 1250 respondents is eight times larger than the minimum requirement, this sample is deemed sufficient.

Fig. 1. Power analysis results showing the sample size requirements for different effect sizes

Instrumentation

The Student Opinion Questionnaire (SOQ) was developed as a data collection tool with expert input and guided by a literature review. Its creation addressed the absence of a suitable instrument tailored to the study's context in Cross River State, Nigeria, aiming to ensure data relevance, validity, and reliability. Rather than using existing instruments, a tailored design was preferred to avoid potential inaccuracies and ensure alignment with the study's objectives. The questionnaire consisted of four sections—A, B, C, and D. Demographic data, including class and school type, were collected in Part A. Part B featured ten 4-point Likert-type scales measuring home religiosity and assessing the frequency of observed behaviours. Respondents indicated the frequency with which they observed each behaviour, with response options ranging from "frequent" to "never." Some sample items in this section include “my family engages in religious practices (e.g., prayer, meditation) together at home”, “religious symbols and artefacts (e.g., scriptures, religious decorations) are displayed in my home”, “I feel a sense of belonging to a religious community within my family” and “discussions about religious beliefs and values are held in my household.”

Part C consisted of ten items designed to measure home behaviour control. This section presented scenarios likely to occur in the home, and respondents were asked to indicate how their parents would react to each scenario from three available options. The respondents' answers across the ten items classified their home behaviour control as stern, firm, or lax. Part D comprised twenty 4-point Likert-type items evaluating indiscipline behaviour, categorised into five subscales. The first subscale evaluated personal indiscipline behaviour, including rudeness and disobedience. The second subscale assessed students' involvement in legal indiscipline, such as cheating and fighting. The third subscale gauged moral indiscipline behaviour, such as sexual offences and deceit. The fourth subscale examined students' safety-related indiscipline behaviour, encompassing bullying, smoking, and similar actions. Finally, the fifth dimension evaluated indiscipline in education, such as truancy and class skipping.

Validity and reliability

Six experts (three in educational psychology and three in tests and measurements) reviewed preliminary versions of the SOQ. Face validity was ensured through a surface-level evaluation of the questionnaire's content to confirm that the scales accurately measured their intended constructs. The experts meticulously scrutinised the research instrument, eliminating unclear or ambiguous items and replacing them with more appropriate items. Quantitative content validity analysis determined the level of agreement among experts and the average proportion of expert responses regarding each item's clarity and relevance. The analysis produced acceptable values for the items, with item content validity indices (I-CVIs) ranging from 0.71 to 0.99 for clarity and from 0.74 to 0.99 for relevance. Three items with I-CVIs less than 0.80 were revised for clarity, relevance, or both. The scale content validity indices for clarity and relevance ranged from 0.92 to 0.95 and 0.90 to 0.97, respectively. Following revisions to the three items with weak I-CVIs, the final version of the instrument was compiled. The researchers piloted the Students' Opinion Questionnaire (SOQ) to gauge its reliability. They employed the instrument with 100 senior secondary I and II students from nonparticipating schools in the research area. Two weeks later, the same students completed the questionnaire again. The researchers analysed the data from both administrations and conducted a correlation analysis to assess the test-retest reliability of the questionnaire scales. The results indicated acceptable reliability, with coefficients ranging from 0.56 to 0.91.

Ethical considerations

Ethical clearance was not mandated for this study per national and institutional regulations. The Nigerian Code of Health Research Ethics exempts survey-based studies from such clearance. Despite this exemption, the researchers took measures to ensure the participants' well-being, safeguarding against physical, emotional, or psychological harm. Written informed consent was obtained from all participants prior to their inclusion in the study. Participants were informed of the study's objectives, their right to withdraw, and potential risks and benefits of participation. The participants were assured of the privacy and the confidentiality of their personal information. The selection process was fair and devoid of discrimination against individuals or groups.

Data collection and analysis

The researchers visited each of the 30 selected secondary schools and, upon obtaining permission from the principal in each case, convened the respondents in a classroom with the assistance of teachers to administer the instrument. The researchers thoroughly explained the expectations to the students before distributing a copy of the questionnaire to each student, ensuring the retrieval of all the completed questionnaires. Due to the respondents' careful and mature handling of the instruments, there were no instances of attrition, resulting in a 100% retrieval rate of the administered instruments. A one-way analysis of variance was performed to test all the hypotheses at the 0.05 level of significance.

Results

Normality test

A normality test was conducted to assess the suitability of the parametric tests, considering associated assumptions. All variables' normality was evaluated using skewness, kurtosis, the Shapiro‒Wilk test, histograms, and Q‒Q plots. The results in Table 2 indicate that all the variables were normally distributed. Skewness and kurtosis values are close to zero, suggesting approximately symmetric distributions with minimal tail weighting. However, home religiosity shows negative kurtosis, indicating a flatter distribution, while the personal dimension of indiscipline behaviour exhibits positive kurtosis, suggesting a slightly more peaked shape. Additionally, the p values of the Shapiro‒Wilk normality test exceeded 0.05 for all the variables, indicating an approximately normal distribution.

Table 2. Descriptive statistics and normality tests for the variables in this study

Variables

HBC

HR

PD

LD

MD

SD

ED

OIB

Mean

30.92

29.38

10.98

10.10

10.50

9.72

10.69

52.00

Std. Deviation

3.37

3.86

4.91

4.93

4.36

4.13

3.80

19.91

IQR

4.59

5.34

6.55

6.79

5.65

5.59

5.03

26.02

Skewness

0.01

-0.04

-0.16

0.00

-0.02

0.00

0.03

0.06

SE of Skewness

0.07

0.07

0.07

0.07

0.07

0.07

0.07

0.07

Kurtosis

-0.03

-0.24

0.05

-0.20

-0.01

-0.03

-0.05

-0.08

S.E. of Kurtosis

0.14

0.14

0.14

0.14

0.14

0.14

0.14

0.14

Shapiro‒Wilk

1.00

0.89

0.95

0.85

0.76

0.99

0.87

0.69

P value of Shapiro‒Wilk

0.99

0.39

0.11

0.65

0.93

0.95

0.82

0.51

Note: HBC = Home behaviour control; HR = Home religiosity; PD = Personal dimension; LD = Legal dimension; MD = Moral dimension; SD = Safety dimension; ED = Educational dimension; OID = Overall indiscipline behaviour

Fig. 2. Histograms showing the normality distributions of the variables

Fig. 3. Q‒Q plots showing the normality of the distribution of the variables.

After reviewing Figures 2 and 3, the data for this study's independent and dependent variables appeared normally distributed. The histograms in Figure 1 exhibit a bell-like shape, which indicates approximately normal distributions for all variables. Similarly, the Q‒Q plots in Figure 3 demonstrate a nearly straight pattern for the data, further suggesting normality for each variable. Therefore, the evidence suggests that the data may be normally distributed for this study.

Hypothesis 1

This hypothesis investigated whether home behaviour control significantly influences students' indiscipline behaviour in school. We performed a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) comparing these groups across five dimensions of indiscipline behaviour: personal, legal, moral, safety, and educational. The results, detailed in Tables 3 and 4, indicate that indiscipline levels were highest among students from homes with lax behaviour control. In contrast, lower levels were observed in those with stern and firm behaviour control. This trend remained consistent across all dimensions assessed.

Table 3. Group means and standard deviation of home behaviour control

Indiscipline

Home behaviour control

N

M

SD

Personal

Lax

Stern

Firm

Total

496

505

249

1250

13.99

9.82

7.33

10.98

3.00

5.17

3.85

4.91

Legal

Lax

Stern

Firm

Total

496

505

249

1250

11.98

10.04

6.48

10.10

3.78

5.62

3.08

4.93

Moral

Lax

Stern

Firm

Total

496

505

249

1250

13.09

9.84

6.67

10.50

3.23

4.56

1.80

4.13

Safety

Lax

Stern

Firm

Total

496

505

249

1250

11.39

9.76

6.33

9.72

3.33

4.62

1.80

4.13

Educational

Lax

Stern

Firm

Total

496

505

249

1250

12.57

10.54

7.25

10.69

2.19

4.44

2.07

3.80

Total

Lax

Stern

Firm

Total

496

505

249

1250

63.02

50.01

34.08

52.00

10.67

22.99

11.04

19.91

Table 4 shows that the calculated F value for each dimension of indiscipline behaviour was greater than the critical F value of 3.00 at the 0.05 significance level, with 2 and 1247 degrees of freedom. These results rejected the null hypothesis, whereas the alternative hypothesis was upheld. Therefore, home behaviour control significantly influences students' overall indiscipline behaviour and the five dimensions of indiscipline behaviour.

Table 4. One-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) of the influence of home behaviour control on students' indiscipline behaviour in school (n = 1250)

Indiscipline

Source of variation

SS

Df

MS

F

Personal

Between groups

Within group

Total

850.271

21604.188

30105.459

2

1247

1249

4250.635

17.325

245.348*

Legal

Between groups

Within group

Total

5024.886

25344.007

30368.893

2

1247

1249

2512.443

20.324

123.620*

Moral

Between groups

Within group

Total

7198.024

16504.456

23702.480

2

1247

1249

3599.012

13.235

271.925*

Safety

Between groups

Within group

Total

4225.261

17080.071

21305.331

2

1247

1249

2112.630

13.697

154.241*

Educational

Between groups

Within group

Total

4703.037

13366.147

18069.185

2

1247

1249

2351.519

10.719

219.386*

Total

Between groups

Within group

Total

142269.8

352977.2

495247.0

2

1247

1249

71134.905

283.061

251.306*

Note: * Significant at the 0.05 level, critical F = 3.00, df = 2, 1247.

 

We conducted Fisher's least significant difference (LSD) post hoc test to conduct multiple pairwise comparisons, addressing the limitation of the omnibus nature of ANOVA and identifying specific sources of variation. The LSD analysis results are summarised in Table 5 and indicate significant differences between groups for all dimensions and total indiscipline scores. Notably, all comparisons yielded p values less than 0.05, indicating statistical significance. The mean differences varied across dimensions, with students experiencing firm home behaviour control displaying lower indiscipline behaviour in school than those with lax home behaviour control across all dimensions. While differences between firm and stern home behaviour control were generally smaller, they remained statistically significant, suggesting that strict or stern home behaviour control may effectively deter indiscipline behaviour, particularly in dimensions such as legality.

Table 5. Fishers' LSD test of multiple comparisons analysis of the influence of home behaviour control on students' indiscipline behaviour in school

Indiscipline

Home behaviour control

MD

SE

t

p

Personal dimension

Firm

Stern

4.17

1.10

14.18

.013

 

Lax

6.66

1.09

18.43

.000

Stern

Lax

2.49

1.55

6.91

.032

Legal dimension

Firm

Stern

4.16

1.29

14.87

.000

 

Lax

7.72

1.28

22.47

.000

Stern

Lax

3.56

1.82

10.40

.012

Moral dimension

Firm

Stern

4.46

0.84

19.60

.009

 

Lax

7.63

0.83

27.29

.000

Stern

Lax

3.17

1.18

11.36

.017

Safety dimension

Firm

Stern

4.63

0.68

24.13

.010

 

Lax

8.15

0.67

34.51

.000

Stern

Lax

3.51

0.96

14.92

.015

Education dimension

Firm

Stern

2.76

0.68

12.67

.026

 

Lax

6.05

0.67

22.61

.000

Stern

Lax

3.29

0.96

12.33

.021

Total indiscipline

Firm

Stern

13.01

15.93

13.01

.000

 

Lax

28.94

15.79

25.93

.000

Stern

Lax

15.93

22.49

15.93

.000

 

Hypothesis 2

This hypothesis examined whether home religiosity significantly influences students' indiscipline behaviour in school. The statistical technique employed was one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA), and the results are presented in Tables 6 and 7. Table 6 demonstrates that indiscipline behaviour is inversely correlated with home religiosity. Students from low-religiosity homes exhibited higher levels of indiscipline, followed by those from moderately religious homes and those from highly religious homes. Table 7 shows that the computed F values for each dimension of indiscipline behaviour exceeded the critical F value of 3.00 at the 0.05 significance level, with 2 and 1247 degrees of freedom. Consequently, the null hypothesis was rejected, indicating the significant influence of home religiosity on students' indiscipline behaviour in school.

Table 6. Group means and standard deviation of the variable for home religiosity

Indiscipline

Home Religiosity

N

M

SD

Personal

Low

Moderate

High

Total

268

278

704

1250

15.00

12.39

8.89

10.98

1.54

4.19

4.86

4.91

Legal

Low

Moderate

High

Total

268

278

704

1250

11.17

10.72

9.45

10.10

1.75

4.01

5.89

4.93

Moral

Low

Moderate

High

Total

268

278

704

1250

12.23

12.06

9.23

10.50

2.28

4.69

4.40

4.36

Safety

Low

Moderate

High

Total

268

278

704

1250

11.73

11.47

8.27

9.72

3.02

3.71

4.07

4.13

Educational

Low

Moderate

High

Total

268

278

704

1250

12.89

11.31

9.61

10.69

1.93

4.02

3.84

3.80

Total

Low

Moderate

High

Total

268

278

704

1250

63.02

57.95

45.46

52.00

5.30

15.82

22.18

19.91

 

Table 7. One-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) of the influence of home religiosity on students' indiscipline behaviour at school (n=1250)

Indiscipline

Source of variation

SS

Df

MS

F

Personal

Between groups

Within group

Total

7963.84

22141.62

30105.46

2

1247

1249

3981.92

17.76

224.26

Legal

Between groups

Within group

Total

707.785

29661.11

30368.89

2

1247

1249

353.89

23.79

14.88

Moral

Between groups

Within group

Total

2607.61

21094.87

23702.48

2

1247

1249

130.804

16.916

77.07

Safety

Between groups

Within group

Total

5407.83

17897.50

21305.33

2

1247

1249

1703.915

16.916

118.72

Educational

Between groups

Within group

Total

2226.97

15842.21

10869.16

2

1247

1249

1113.487

12.704

87.65

Total

Between groups

Within group

Total

72524.22

422722.80

495247.00

2

1247

1249

36262.111

338.991

106.97

Note: * Significant at the 0.05 level, critical F=3.00, df=2,1247.

Further analysis of the factors' influence was conducted using Fisher's LSD multiple comparison analysis, and the results are detailed in Table 8. The table indicates that students with high levels of home religiosity tend to display significantly lower levels of indiscipline behaviour across all dimensions than do those with low or moderate levels of home religiosity. Significant differences in mean scores were observed between the low- and high-home religiosity groups for the personal, legal, moral, safety, and education dimensions, with total indiscipline scores yielding p values less than 0.05. Similarly, significant differences were found between the moderate and high home religiosity groups for the legal, moral, safety, and education dimensions, along with total indiscipline scores, with p values less than 0.05.

Table 8. Fisher’s LSD multiple comparison analysis of the influence of home religiosity on students' indiscipline behaviour in school

Indiscipline

Home religiosity

MD

SE

t

p

Personal dimension

Low

Moderate

2.62

1.53

6.49

.036

 

High

6.12

1.50

18.69

.000

Moderate

High

3.50

0.94

10.49

.018

Legal dimension

Low

Moderate

4.55

2.05

10.94

.013

 

High

5.82

2.01

16.69

.003

Moderate

High

1.27

1.27

3.69

.048

Moral dimension

Low

Moderate

2.40

1.46

5.66

.041

 

High

5.23

1.43

14.72

.008

Moderate

High

2.83

0.90

8.08

.028

Safety dimension

Low

Moderate

6.12

1.24

34.20

.000

 

High

9.32

1.22

62.12

.000

Moderate

High

3.20

0.76

21.61

.022

Education dimension

Low

Moderate

2.93

1.10

8.25

.024

 

High

4.63

1.08

15.56

.011

Moderate

High

1.70

0.68

5.79

.042

Total indiscipline

Low

Moderate

5.67

29.24

5.67

.007

 

High

18.18

28.71

18.18

.000

Moderate

High

12.79

18.04

12.79

.000

 

Discussion

The first finding indicates the significant influence of home behaviour control on students' indiscipline behaviour. The finding highlights that students from lax households display heightened levels of indiscipline, followed by those from stern homes, while students from firm households exhibit lower levels of indiscipline. This observation is consistent with role theory [7], which posits that individuals conform to the roles and expectations established within their immediate environment, including family and social networks. In lax households, unclear boundaries and expectations may result in students lacking behavioural structure and discipline. Conversely, overly stringent rules in stern households might provoke rebellious behaviour. However, students from firm households adhere to clear, consistent rules and expectations, leading to diminished indiscipline. These findings suggest collaborative efforts between teachers and parents to establish clear household rules and boundaries, fostering positive classroom behaviour. Strategies include setting consistent consequences for misbehaviour and encouraging parental monitoring. Educators can also engage students in discussions to underscore the significance of rules and boundaries in promoting positive behaviour and academic achievement. These findings are consistent with prior research demonstrating that adolescents from lax (Laissez-faire) family styles exhibit notably greater engagement in delinquent behaviour than do those from firm and stern households [6; 30; 47; 48]. They also align with Gittins and Hunt's [25] findings that indiscipline behaviour largely stems from home behaviour control, particularly when ideal practices are not implemented. However, they contrast with the results of [58], which suggest that home climate lacks a significant association with adolescent antisocial behaviour.

The second hypothesis reveals the significant influence of home religiosity on students' undisciplined behaviour. Specifically, students from households with low religiosity exhibited heightened undisciplined behaviour, while those from highly religious homes displayed lower levels. This observation underscores the pivotal role of home religiosity in shaping students' behaviour, with high religiosity linked to reduced undisciplined behaviour and vice versa. This outcome aligns with role theory principles, suggesting that individuals tend to conform to roles and expectations within their immediate environments, such as family and social networks [16]. One plausible explanation for this association is that religious beliefs and practices provide individuals with a sense of structure and discipline. For instance, religious teachings often emphasise moral values and ethical conduct, guiding individuals in decision-making and behaviour aligned with societal norms. These findings suggest that educators can collaborate with parents to foster a robust religious foundation in the home, fostering positive behaviour in the classroom. Strategies include encouraging parents to involve their children in religious activities such as attending services, praying, or meditating. Similarly, Nnadozie et al. [41] reported that adolescents with highly or moderately religious parents were less likely to engage in premarital sex than were those with low-home religiosity, indicating a correlation between religiosity and disciplinary behaviour.

Limitations and Prospective Research Directions

This study's findings on parenting styles and their impact on students' indiscipline have significant implications, yet several limitations affect the generalizability of the results. First, the subjective nature of the outcome variable, indiscipline behaviour, may introduce biases. Future research could employ multiple measures, including observations and self-reports, to enhance reliability and validity. Objective measures such as physiological assessments could offer more precise evaluations. Second, the sample's lack of representativeness may restrict generalizability. Diversifying participants and conducting multisite studies across different cultures could provide broader insights. Third, inadequate control over extraneous variables may compromise internal validity. Future studies could employ rigorous designs, such as randomised controlled trials, and consider potential confounding variables in analyses. Finally, the cross-sectional design limits causal conclusions. Longitudinal designs and experimental manipulations of home behaviour control are suggested for exploring causal pathways.

Conclusion

This study assessed the impacts of home behaviour control and religiosity on student indiscipline. We found significant influences of both factors on student behaviour, consistent with role theory, which posits that immediate social surroundings influence behaviour. Specifically, students from firm homes and high religiosity levels displayed lower indiscipline, contrasting with those from lax homes and low religiosity levels, who showed higher levels of indiscipline. These findings have implications for policy, research, and practice. Policymakers can develop programs promoting positive behaviour by fostering a strong religious foundation at home and establishing clear behaviour expectations. Researchers can further explore the social environment's role in behaviour formation and underlying mechanisms. Educators can collaborate with parents to set clear behaviour rules and encourage religious practices, fostering positive classroom behaviour. Understanding the social environment's influence aids in promoting positive student behaviour and academic success.

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Information About the Authors

Kingsley B. Abang, PhD in Psychology, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Educational Foundations, University of Calabar, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3740-9198, e-mail: bekomabang@gmail.com

Valentine J. Owan, Postgraduate Student of Research Measurement and Evaluation, Department of Educational Foundations, University of Calabar, Founder of the Ultimate Research Network, a Multidisciplinary Research Initiative, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5715-3428, e-mail: owanvalentine@gmail.com

Richard A. Ojini, PhD, Lecturer in the Department of Educational Foundations, University of Calabar, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2658-5513, e-mail: dr.richardojini@gmail.com

Bernard D. Otu, PhD, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Educational Foundations, University of Calabar, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6072-9619, e-mail: otu-bernard@yahoo.com

German E. Anagbogu, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Educational Foundations, University of Calabar, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6165-9317, e-mail: anagbogug@gmail.com

Cecilia A. Beshel, PhD, Senior Lecturer, Department of Continuing Education/Developmental Studies, University of Calabar, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3636-4864, e-mail: beshelakpana@gmail.com

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