Organisation of Dual Mode Distance Education institutions in Nigeria: present and future

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Commonwealth of Learning (COL)

PCF5: Cross-Cutting Theme // The challenges of mass access to university education in Nigeria are escalating by the day. It is becoming clearer everyday that going strictly by the use of brick and mortar institutions and limiting learning to the four walls of the lecture room, not much may be done within the coming decades to provide sufficient classroom space, accommodation and facilities for all those intending to acquire university education in the country. For example, the Population Reference Bureau, 2007 showed that 34% of Nigeria’s population put at about 140million are aged 10 to 24. This is about 47million. The total number of secondary school students preparing for university admission between now and the next four to five years will come from this figure. Yet for a period of one decade now, Nigerian universities had been able to take among themselves, only between 24% (in 1998) falling to 5% in 2002 and rising to 8% in 2004 of all applicants for placement in Nigerian universities. The high and discriminatory fees charged by overseas universities had hit Nigeria most hard thus reducing the number of Nigerian students who could go out as private students. Nigeria believes that her “development will not be saved by oil & gas or solid minerals but rather the application of the benefit stream arising from resource exploitation in the development of human capital” (FGN, 2006). Education, particularly at the tertiary level, is central to the accomplishment of this belief. Nigerian youth want to go to the university but there is just no space in the existing universities to take those who are qualified for admission. It is projected that by 2009, just a year from today, about 10,535,618 qualified candidates will be rejected or denied admission into any of the 91 conventional universities in Nigeria because of lack of space rather than lack of ability of the candidates. Table 1 below tells part of the story. // Paper ID 19

Distance Education (Dual Mode),Higher Education