The State of Tertiary Institutions In Nigeria And The Way Forward – Discuss Nigeria
Posted On Nov 30, 2016
In its report, UNESCO states that more than 50,000 Nigerians studied abroad in 2012. Most of these students choose the UK and the US. Nigerian student enrollment in the latter destination has increased more than 25% in the past five years, due to lack of confidence in the educational system. This confirms the pitiful state and degradation of the Nigerian Educational system.
Little wonder foreign corporations and multinationals (like Shell, Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Texaco etc) prefer to hire graduates (Nigerian and others) from foreign institutions from Europe, America or other parts of Africa (like South Africa and Ghana). These corporations do not have confidence in our educational system. Obviously, challenges of the education sector in Nigeria is visible to the blind and audible to the deaf. We need solutions to salvage this situation we are in. What needs to be done?
In a tweetchat on Saturday 26th of November; online platform; Discuss Nigeria had Dr. Dipo Awojide discuss the way forward for Tertiary Educational institutions in Nigeria. Dr Dipo was of the opinion that Nigeria’s education system has been degraded due to neglect, corruption, lack of visionary leadership, amongst other critical factors. Not to dwell so much on the challenges.
The chat was focused on solutions and the way forward. Basically, the modalities of admission criteria and processes in the Nigerian higher education sector is a farce. The system and process of admission is not transparent, neither is it adequately structured. The system and process of admission is not transparent, neither is it adequately structured.
The system favours certain class of Nigerians who can buy their way through. Admission racketeering abound. The system also favours some citizens well above others, whereas there should be a level playing field for all. Catchment area, State of origin, educationally disadvantaged States and all that crap needs to be jettisoned. These should be replaced with an adequately transparent process and a level playing field for all.
A lot of people blame the Governments. Some say why not blame the lecturers too? Of course, there’s enough blame to go around. Ultimately, it is the role of the State or Federal Government who own these institutions to ensure staff development. A mediocre lecturer cannot impact maximum knowledge. You cannot give what you don’t have.
Having said that, lecturers themselves need to recognise the importance of personal/professional development. A lecturer cannot teach with notebooks from 1985 and textbooks from 1970 and blame that on the Federal Government.
And at this point in time, with about 300 Universities and Polytechnics across Nigeria, I believe we have enough. We need to stop creating new Federal or State Universities/Polytechnics. Invest in & fix the existing schools. We need to sort out staff welfare and infrastructural decay. We need to revamp the curriculum too. We need the Ministry of Education to come up with sound, and fit-for-purpose policies, and implement these. We need to invest in employ-ability/enterprise skills development,in curriculum refresh & research development. We need to invest in mental health support for students, and encourage Faculties to forge links with industry. We need to revamp Vocational Schools, improve assessment & feedback process & ensure students have a VOICE. We are yet to see or hear about any significant improvement or attempted improvement since May 29 2015. I hope President
Muhammadu Buhari takes the Nigerian education sector serious. I hope our State Governors see Education as a priority. I hope future State Commissioners, and Ministers of Education are not appointed based on political patronage. We’d be able to transform the higher education sector in Nigeria in the next decade if we implement these recommendations.
Dr Dipo Awojide (@ogbenidipo on Twitter), who’s passionate about the development of Nigeria’s education sector, has been awarded the Nigerian (UK-Based) Student President in the Nigerian UK-Based Achievers Award in year 2013. Dr. Awojide is currently a Lecturer in Strategy at Nottingham Business School and he is a member of the British Academy of Management and the Africa Academy of Management.
The platform that organised the chat, Discuss Nigeria holds chat on challenges facing the Nigerian society, with hopes of find lasting solutions to these challenges (and sending the recommendations to necessary authorities for implementation), every Friday by 6pm, via its Twitter account; @Discuss_NGR