Nigeria: Why Foreign Students, Lecturers Shun Nigerian Varsities - JAMB Panel

13 December 2019

A committee on the review of admission into Nigerian tertiary institutions has recommended a new framework to globalise operations at the universities.

The Committee on Internationalization of Admissions into Tertiary Educational Institutions in Nigeria was set up by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board to ensure the tertiary education system plays an active role in internationalization, including students' mobility, partnerships and projects and joint research initiatives.

Presenting the report to JAMB Registrar Prof. Ishaq Oloyede in Abuja yesterday, the chairman of the committee, Prof. Attahiru Jega, said Nigeria scored low on internationalization by the virtue of a survey conducted by the committee in August 2019.

He said of the 194 institutions that responded, there were 1,856 foreign students out of a total of 1,132,795 students. He said there were 437 foreign academic staff from a total of 5,604 academic staff of institutions.

"Foreign students make up 0.18% in universities, 0.29% in polytechnics and 0.04% in colleges of education. The percentage of all foreign students in Nigeria's tertiary education system as at 2018/2019 session, is 0.16%. With regards to staff, the percentage of foreign academics in Nigerian universities is 0.008%, 1.64% in polytechnics and 0.18% in the colleges of education, an indication that teaching staff in the tertiary education system is largely dominated by Nigerian academics," he said.

The committee recommended that an urgent action be taken by JAMB to attract foreign students and staff by advertising for international students in foreign media, publishing information on accredited programmes and admission requirements, entrenching stable academic calendar, charging moderate fees, improving teaching quality and facilities.

It also asked JAMB to advise the federal government to ensure the safety and security of locals and foreigners, make conscious efforts to promote Nigerian culture, allow tertiary institutions to open offshore campuses under a regulatory framework, grant greater autonomy to institutions to admit foreign students in collaboration with JAMB, among others.

Oloyede pledged that the report would be thoughtfully implemented.

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