InterVoices: Revista Electrónica de Intercambio y Estudio en el Exterior
Should we be looking at Nigeria?
- Author: Lourdes Zilberberg Oviedo
- Category: Panorama internacional
A special report made by David Tobenkin published at International Educator Magazine, shows the great potentialities for International Higher Education in the African Continent.
By 2050 it is estimated that three of the top ten countries in the world (by population) will be from Africa. One of these countries is Nigeria, which is considered an awaking giant, becoming the largest economy in the continent.
Why we should be looking at Nigeria
The educated growing middle class in Nigeria (with 190 million inhabitants) is young and is looking for higher education opportunities.
It is known that the domestic higher education system is having trouble, between 2012 and 2019, only 19% of Nigerian applicants were admitted. It means that 6.3 million had to look for other alternatives in the domestic private sector or abroad.
Nigeria is the largest exporter of international students in the African Continent
In 2017-18, according to Open Doors data, 12,693 Nigerians were studying in the United States of America- USA, representing 30% of all Africans in the country.
In 2018, the Nigerian Federal State Government declared state of emergency in the Country’s Educational System and Nigeria’s National Universities Commission (NUC) launched a plan entitled: “Blueprint on the Rapid Revitalisation of University Education in Nigeria 2018- 2023”. Blueprint plan targets the following areas: university access, curriculum, educational quality, and quality of facilities. As result of this initiative, access to higher education has been increased in 20% and in April 2018, NUC announced the creation of 290 universities.
In this scenario, distance learning it is, indeed, an important alternative. MOOCs- Massive Open Online Courses and hybrid programs will help in providing higher education to the youth. Accordingly, The National Open University of Nigeria is planning to increase enrollment from 50,000 to 1 million in the next 3 years.
It is clear that Nigeria has to reinvent its higher education system, based on foreign old-fashioned models that need to be adapted to the current local needs being more collaborative and innovative.
Africa’s Education Evolution in International Educator, NAFSA- Association of International Educators (May/June,2019).
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