I have a dream that Nigerian universities will become among the most desirable institutions in the world. Some people may think that we cannot get to this level but if we put our acts together, we can rise on the ladder and get our glory restored. How?
We need to, first of all, change our approach to teaching-learning. We need to pay attention to skill development instead of cognition. In our higher institutions of learning today, students only learn to memorize information. Thus, it is common to see students that do not remember what they did last semester. This makes it difficult for our graduates to assert themselves in their chosen fields after leaving school. In order to avoid this, lecturers should stop spoon feeding students but rather guide them to carry out research.
If we want to truly develop skills, there is need to pay more attention to practicals (especially in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). This is where the use of modern laboratories come in. There is urgent need to equip our laboratories with modern equipment. In this way, our universities will be real centres for research. If I may ask, how many electron microscope do we have in the chemistry laboratories of our universities? How many university laboratories have twenty four hour power supply throughout the year? Students need to be exposed to the practical use of laboratory equipment.
In order to have a good output, one needs a good input. It is therefore important that admission into our universities should be (more) strictly on merit. We need to scale down the percentage of non merit admissions (based on catchment areas, ELDS, discretionary admissions). Let us admit only the best students so that we can have the best graduates.
Our universities will certainly return to the top of we can do this.
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