Four Reasons Why Students Fail English and Mathematics in WAEC and NECO Exams

necoThe following are four reasons why students always fail their WAEC and NECO English and Mathematics exams.

Fear Factor

Many secondary school students have developed some element of fear about these two subjects. This is always as a result of long term negative information they get every year about the poor and low level performance in WAEC and NECO English and Mathematics results. defines fear as a vital response to physical and emotional danger—if we didn’t feel it, we couldn’t protect ourselves from legitimate threats.

This quote can be translated in the context of the threat posed by these two subjects to candidates preparing for exam. Since most of these students have lost hope and are psychologically defeated due to fear, this has affected their level of interest and passion in these subjects and major percentage of students have chosen to pass these exams through malpractice or external help.

Lack of Good Teachers in These Subjects

Another important factor that has contributed to high level of failure in WAEC and NECO English and Mathematics examinations is lack of quality, seasoned and good teachers in these subjects.

The level of corruption in our system especially in public sector has made it possible for people who are not well suited for a job to occupy the position due to personal connection or network.  Many teachers who have been employed and are teaching right now have not even taken a course in teaching practice and majority care less about their students and their inability to learn and understand the subject.

Lack of Passion

When you do not have passion for what you do, it will be very difficult to be efficient and productive. This goes a long way to explain the lack of passion many students have developed in English and Mathematics subjects. Loss of passion is the same as loss of interest and this phenomenon is always caused by factors like a bad style of teaching, fear factor, negative hype about the subjects and more.

Many English and Mathematics teachers have failed to boast their students’ morale in these subjects and have failed to teach these subjects in ways that make it fun and interactive for students to enjoy while learning.

Lack of Reading and Practice 

The last thing many students love doing is to open their English or Mathematics textbooks and practise their skills themselves. Many students consider it to be boring especially when there is lack of interest. How on earth do you expect a student who has not taken out time to learn and practise English and Mathematics on their own to come to exam after three years of senior secondary and pass WAEC or NECO English and Mathematics subjects without any external help?

For many students,  lack of money in their families have resulted to their inability to pay for extra-mural classes after school in order to learn more about the subjects they have hard time to comprehend.

Final Take

There are many other factors apart from the above listed factors, but at the end of the day it is the students that bear the hurt of any consequences that may arise. There is need for students to demand more from their schools and teachers in order to tackle these problems.

What many students have failed to understand is the power of determination and hard work.  Do you know that if you are able to pass chemistry, you can also work that hard to pass English and Mathematics?

You should not play the blaming card on anybody in as much as we all know how bad things have gone but you have to take hold of your future and set the path you wish to follow.

Note: This article is authored by ToscanyAcademy and originally published on

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