Education standard in Nigeria not falling ― Don

• as Veritas varsity gets NUC nod to commence PhD in Economics, Political Science

A Professor of English Language, Veritas University, Bwari, Abuja, Gabriel Egbe, has disagreed with ‘erroneous’ belief in some quarters that standards of education in Nigeria are falling, arguing that this was a skewed assessment of education in the country.

Egbe spoke on Monday at a news conference heralding the first inaugural lecture of the University he is billed to deliver on Thursday. The theme of the inaugural lecture is “Of New Englishes and New Literacies”.

This came as the Vice-Chancellor of the University, Reverend Fr. (Prof.) Hyacinth Ichoku disclosed that the National Universities Commission (NUC) has approved the commencement of doctorate degree programmes in Economics and Political Science at Veritas University.

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Egbe, who is the first professor produced by the Catholic University located at an idyllic ambience of Bwarri, a suburb of Abuja, insisted that the standard of education in Nigeria remains intact and comparable to anywhere in the world.

He also advocated for examination students in Nigeria in the “Nigerian standard English”, stressing that the English Language is an international language not owned by any country.

He said: “As an academic, I do not believe that education standards are falling generally. People say education standards are falling because we measure standard from a very skewed perspective.

“If a child went to school in 1960 and I went to school in 2019, how do you compare the standard of 1960 to 2019, when a child is doing 19 subjects and a child in 1960 was doing three or four subjects.

“There is no basis for comparison. Unfortunately, each time we talk about the standard falling, we measure it in English. How much English is my children speaking? If they can’t speak as you are speaking we say the standards are falling.

“I can tell you that these children are speaking better than we did in our time. The problem is that they have to understand the appropriateness of language use. What time do I speak this way and how and where, so that I do not carry my internet language into the examination that is not for internet language,” he said.

Egbe, further noted that the choice of the theme of the inaugural lecture was to expose the plurality of English Language.

Vice-Chancellor of Veritas University, Prof. Ichoku, said the University would commence PhD programmes in Economics and Political Science this year, having secured the approval of NUC to run the doctorate degree programmes.

While expressing the commitment of the University to deliver quality education to the students, he noted that the University now has a student population of 2,000 with ongoing efforts to expand the facilities to make room for more intake.

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