Wendy Ujagbor, Nigeria

Wendy Ujagbor,

Nigeria

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HIGHER EDUCATION IN NIGERIA

Education is a critical element of human development, and it is essential to the growth and development of any country. In Nigeria, there are three different types of education: Elementary, Secondary, Tertiary Education with the sole aim of providing the foundation for gaining basic knowledge, giving a certain level of exposure in the STEM world, and promoting our rich cultural heritage.

Asiyai and Oghuvbu (2009) defined quality education as a measure of how good or bad the products of higher institutions in Nigeria are in terms of academic performance and meeting established standards.

In Nigeria, the courses/programs in high demand include Information Technology, Project Management, Medicine and Surgery, Computer Science, Finance, Petroleum Engineering, and Electrical & Electronics Engineering. The learning delivery mode most common is On-Campus learning.

I grew up in a country where On-Campus learning has always been our go-to-mode in the higher institution. The high number of students delegate-to-lecturers per course has been an issue over the years in our higher institutions. The capacity to keep up with the impaction has decreased drastically. COVID-19 has come as a blessing in disguise – as this has allowed the introduction and appreciation of E-learning using Google Classroom, ZOOM & YouTube.

Other challenges hindering the full implementation of quality education in Nigeria are:

A. Poor Policy Implementation

The poor-quality delivery is responsible for the appalling low performance of graduates of the higher institutions in Nigeria and the alarming rate of examination malpractice. Factors include government underfunding of education and injudicious utilization of available funds.

B. Lack of ICT Facilities

Curriculum content could be enriched through search from the internet by teachers. It has been linked consciously to higher efficiency, high productivity, higher educational outcomes, including cognitive, creative, and innovative thinking (Olatoye, 2011).

C. Teaching staff union disputes

A significant hurdle to the higher education quality in Nigeria is the constant staff union disputes and the consequent closings of the institutions. The severance of academic programs affects students’ learning outcomes.

D. Materials and Resources

The lack of human and material resources such as science laboratories, workshops, students’ hostels, libraries, electricity, etc., will affect the quality of higher education.

E. Brain Drain

Brain drain has led to a decline in research outputs from higher institutions in Nigeria, vis-à-vis the disappearance of research centers in Nigerian universities.

F. Insufficient funds

Government underfunding of education and injudicious utilization of available funds.

G. Internet access in rural areas

 

RECOMMENDATION
I strongly recommend the following:
To the higher education policymakers,

  • The Nigerian government should place a high premium on education by meeting up to the recommended 26% educational spending designated by UNESCO to help revitalize the higher education
  • A well-equipped environment should be made for the staff through improved conditions of service, provision of basic infrastructures, research centers, virtual libraries, information communication technologies, and internet connectivity.
  • Higher institutions in Nigeria should set up internal quality assurance and monitoring of lectures to improve delivery quality.
  • Lecturers and non-lecturers should be motivated to be more dedicated, devoted, committed, and efficient in their
  • Higher institutions in Nigeria should employ more lecturers to match the students’ numbers.

FIELD SCARCITY IN THE NIGERIA LABOR MARKET

In Nigeria, employment is slowly shifting away from the following fields as they are falling in its importance:

  1. The Manufacturing industry lacks high-skilled laborers, innovation, and the platform to prosper
  2. Agricultural industry: Farmers have little access to credit and capital, agricultural inputs, and weak technical knowledge to leverage new technologies and farm practices to increase efficiency. Also, there is recently a lack of good roads and insecurity issues plaguing farmers on their farmlands.
  3. Medicine & Surgery (Doctors): The Nigerian doctors are migrating to foreign countries where they are more valued, and their welfare is adequately taken into consideration and reimbursed

SWOT ANALYSIS OF NIGERIA’S JOB MARKET

STRENGTHS
  1. Nigeria has potentials for growth and durability, enriched with oil and gas resources, which generated over 90% of the foreign exchange earnings for the economy (The Business Trade and Investment Guide, 2009).
  2. Nigeria can diversify and help earn foreign exchange in the field of exports. The country obtained membership of the African Growth and Opportunity Act of the USA. This strength on the global platform will automatically give a boost to all other businesses in
  3. A friendly environment for agriculture and the generous hydrocarbon endowments have enabled Nigeria to sustain robust growth, develop a strong balance of payments and external position and keep the public debt low.
WEAKNESSES

Some of the factors responsible for hindering the competitiveness locally and globally are:

  1. Lack of power supply and financial resources hinder the country’s productivity and competitiveness. These factors have forced manufacturers and entrepreneurs to either close their businesses, relocate, or have insufficient capital or fund to start a business or to keep it
  2. To globalize their businesses, companies must ensure to incorporate new advanced technology. The country relies on the production and exportation of oil and gas, causing a fall in earnings due to the economic boom-and-bust situation over the years. The Nigerian government needs to diversify its economy and export
OPPORTUNITIES
  1. With the high population density, there are limited products and services to meet the As this poses an economic problem, new businesses tend to arise in several sectors or industries.
  2. Another opportunity for investors is to form good mutual relations by enhancing its export base, diversifying its economy, exchanging goods and services, and even low-income laborers. The influx of expatriates would provide more opportunities and bridge gaps in acquiring modern skills for local employees or laborers. It will allow competitiveness; product markets will increase with time while making companies more innovative, resilient, and
THREATS
  1. Inflation, deregulation, corruption, lack of security, and fuel scarcity have occurred in Nigeria with no means to tackle them. It has led to the falling of reputation of local and multinational It also thwarts productivity and becomes a hindrance in the way of improving market competitiveness.
  2. Weaker forex and low purchasing power holding the Nigerian companies back have created a gap between the inadequate capital to invest and short of material resources, resulting in low products and Bad governance has stifled the ability to put systems in place to embrace growth and stability.

REFERENCES

Ahmed, M. S. (2005). Is Globalization capable of raising living standards through international trade in Nigeria Retrieved 29 July 2010, from http://www.hollerafrica.com/showArticle.php

Carlsson, M.; Dahl, G.B.; Öckert, B.; Rooth, D. The Effect of Schooling on Cognitive Skills. Review of Economics and Statistics, 2015, 97(3), 533-547

Imhonlele, A. (2010). Nigerian Entrepreneurs urged to take advantage of Growth Act. Retrieved 29 July 2010, from Based Management. (2010). SWOT Analysis. Figure 1. Research framework THREATS 0565 (Online) 104 Retrieved 8 November 2021.

Ise Olorunkanmi, J. O., Rotimi, M. E., Adebola, G. O., Lawal, A. I., Henry, N. L. C., & Adebisi, T. (2021). Challenges in Nigeria’s education sector and the migration of Nigerian postgraduate students to South African universities. Cogent Social Sciences, 7(1), 1890897. https://doi.org/10.1080/23311886.2021.1890897 [Taylor & Francis Online], [Web of Science ®], [Google Scholar]

Solimeno, A., Mebane, M. E., Tomai, M., & Francescato, D. (2008). The influence of student and teachers’ characteristics on the efficacy of face-to-face and computer- supported collaborative learning. Computers & Education, 51(2008), 109–128. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2007.04.003 [Crossref], [Google Scholar]

UNESCO Institute for information technologies in education. (2020). 1.37 billion students now home as COVID-19 school closures expand, ministers scale-up multimedia approaches to ensure learning continuity. https://en.unesco.org/news/137-billion-students-now-home-covid-19-school- closures-expand-ministers-scale-multimedia [Google Scholar]

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