THE vice chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Professor Idowu Olayinka, has advocated a policy that will incentivize studying mathematics in Nigerian universities, saying the problems facing mathematics scholarship is Nigeria is the thinking that those who study the subject will end up as teachers.
Professor Olayinka made the remarks at the 75th Interdisciplinary Discourse of the Postgraduate School of the institution delivered by former president of African Mathematics Union (AMU), Professor Aderemi Kuku, entitled ‘Higher Education in Mathematics, Science and Technology’.
He said proper career counseling is needed at the secondary school level to properly guide and expose students to opportunities available in studying mathematics.
In his lecture, Professor Kuku called on the federal government to stop the brain drain in Mathematics, Science and Technology and turn brain drain to brain gain by speaking to Nigerian scholars abroad to return to develop the country.
He said Nigeria must invest in the production of easy-to-understand mathematics textbooks, noting that “our school teachers are not able to write innovative books because they do not understand what they teach.”
Kuku urged the federal government under President Muhammadu Buhari to inculcate scientific culture through the popularisation of science and technology and putting round pegs in round holes to bring the desired development to the country.
He described the science and technology policy of the federal government as superb, but noted that it needs to be reviewed and implemented before Nigeria can have meaningful development.