JIS News

Teachers and students of secondary schools have welcomed the publication of three handbooks on economics, geography and sociology by the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN), which will help in preparations for the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE).
Sociology teacher at Clarendon College, Jodie Titus, speaking to JIS News at the launch held recently at STATIN’S Cecelio Avenue offices, described the material in the handbook in her subject area as “relevant”, noting that “it covers, basically, all of module one in the sociology syllabus.”
Noting the challenges, which some students face interpreting and applying statistics to their coursework, she commended STATIN for making the publications “student friendly” and “age appropriate”.
“I think that the students will find it relevant, especially as regards the fertility rate, the mortality rate, the calculations.they have brought it down to (the students’) level. I think it will aid in research,” Ms. Titus told JIS News.
Sixth form student at Clarendon College, Chevelle Buckley, said the sociology handbook is “good’ for upper school students doing School-based Assessments (SBAS), “because most of the information… in the syllabus is covered in the book.”
Economics and Principles of Business teacher at Camperdown High School in Kingston, Sharmalee Frankson, believes that, in utilising and applying the handbooks’ contents, students “will improve their overall studies” and be able to “enhance their grades.”
Sixth form student at the East Kingston-based school, Rohan Watson, who is studying sociology and geography, was highly appreciative of the publications, stating that “we (can) get good information about the subjects…that we might be having problems with.”
“These publications (will be) very good in helping us (to) compile our (research), and understanding everything that we are studying,” Rohan added.
The publications, the brainchild of STATIN’s Director General, Sonia Jackson, will help to address the need of students for statistical data in undertaking SBAs and other academic requirements in the specific subject areas.
Representatives of 12 high schools, who attended the launch, were presented with copies of the handbooks and accompanying compact discs.
Chairman of STATIN, Professor Gordon Shirley, who delivered the main address, noted that “the goal, really, is to ensure that the performance in these areas is enhanced by the quality of the data and information that is available at STATIN, and by trying to put it into a form that is more user-friendly for our students.”
“What I would encourage you (STATIN) to do… is to establish a new study, which will look at the performance in the economics, sociology, and geography (examinations). The jump that you will see this year and the jump that you will see when you put out the other handbooks will, I am sure, be a direct reflection of the contribution that has been made through these handbooks,” Professor Shirley stated.

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