Crises in Nigerian Education and Ways to Overcome them
Nigeria being the most populous country in Africa, pressure on creating educational institutions for its ever growing student population is considerably high. But, what is problematic is that Nigeria cannot meet the demand of education both in quantity as well as quality. So, for a developing country like Nigeria for which “There can be no escape from poverty without a vast expansion of secondary education”, as said Unesco’s director-general Irina Bokova, and where “This is a minimum entitlement for equipping youth with the knowledge and skills they need to secure decent livelihoods in today’s globalized world”, scarcity of educational facilities is really threatening for Nigerian students.
· In 1970 the number of secondary students in Nigeria was 196 million.
· In 2009 it grew to as high as 531 million.
Whilst the country made moderately a satisfactory development in primary education sphere, scenario of its secondary and postsecondary level growth has been a bit dramatic.
· From 1970 – 2007 numbers of Nigerian students of secondary education level grew from 400,000 to 6 million.
In comparison to the increase, UNESCO’s reported “effective transition rate”, which measures probable student flow to higher level of education in Nigeria is only 44%.
In the tertiary level education also, many new demands are there which the Nigerian government is currently hard pressed to meet.
· In 2013, 1.7 million students registered for Nigeria’s centralised admissions examinations, whereas the available seats were just half million.
To deal with the crisis Nigeria takes recourse to foreign colleges and universities, as per data from the UNESCO Institute of Statistics (UIS).
· According to data from the UIS, Nigerian students flow to overseas institutions grew 71% between 2007 and 2010.
The UK Shows the Solution
Amongst many overseas destinations the UK is observed as the favourite for Nigerian students. According to the British Council there will be 30,000 Nigerian students studying in the UK by 2015. As per another report from Britain’s Higher Education Statistics Agency, the number of Nigerian students studying in the UK grew from 11,785 to 17,629 between 2008 and 2012. Currently, 42% of Nigerian students studying overseas are studying at a British institution of higher education.
Online Education from UK universities
Now, whilst Nigeria has gotten a substantial solution to its crisis in the marvellous education standard through UK higher education institutions, it should be kept in mind that costly international education is not so easy for common people of a developing country like Nigeria. British universities and higher education providers have meditated over this issue and have come up with easy-affordable distance education programmes. With online technologies employed to deliver these distance learning courses UK universities have shown a promising solution for Nigerian students belonging to the most humble economic strata.
Flexible and Affordable Online Education
With a simple computing device like desktop, laptop or tablet and an internet connection they can continue their higher studies under UK universities through online distance education. They do not even have to incur the high cost of living in a costly foreign land. In the comfort of home these students can now go on with their international higher education, and that too incurring merely just a fraction of expense compared to on-campus UK university education.
Nigeria should enthusiastically exploit the enormous advantage of these unparallel benefits on online distance learning offered by UK universities. A country that is struggling with its economic as well as educational developments must readily grab this incredible opportunity that shows a truly substantial way to address the country’s loopholes.