As reported by punch on 29th of December 2019 the joint admissions and matriculation board (Jamb) had announced that her annual University tertiary matriculation examination (Utme) would take place between March 14 and April 4, 2020. With the form open to sale from today 13th of January 2019.
According to Nigerian scholar, 1,792,719 candidates sat for the examination in 2019. And according to a publication by Quartz Africa in 2015, only one in four, that is; 25 percent of this large number of admission seekers secure admission due to low capacity of our Universities, polytechnics and colleges of education. So, given the turn of events; how important the choices candidates make during registration (choice of school, course and subject combination) for the examination is to admission seekers, it is only right to dish out today, this article on things you should consider before picking a school and course.
1. School fees: A popular saying goes “cut your coat according to your size” and for someone like me who’s not from a family that can afford all schools in Nigeria, this come first. it is very important to take into consideration the amounts paid as fees in various schools (your course in particular) in relation to your parents/sponsor’s pocket since universities don’t pay same fees just so you know which you can afford. Even the Bible says “For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?”. Money does comes first.
2. Course: this comes second for me. Have you tried thinking about the course you have in mind? Have you taken your time to check the employment opportunities available after graduation? How many years it would take you? If it has compulsory expenses like excursions and if you can finance it? Why you picked the course and other questions?. Choice of course is one of the mistakes People make mostly due to ignorance when filling their forms. You should put your course into consideration
3. School: After picking a course, another important thing is the choice of schoo. Do you have a school in mind? Have you considered the distance of the school? How safe the environment the school is? If the school is licenced by ASUU to award degree on the course you’re opting for? How good the school is? And again, how expensive their school fees and most importantly cost of living in that area. Obviously, those are very important questions every Jambites should know. For example, university of Ibadan medicine is second to none, Oau also has a very good medical school, they should be your choice if you want to study any medical course and can compete.
4. How competitive the school you have in mind is: while I was in secondary school, most if my mates in the hostel acclaimed university of Ibadan as first choice and went ahead to pick the school, it changed over time due to the competitiveness of the institution. While it is always good to aim for the best, it is also important to note that note that admission is a case of the survival of the fittest and only the best fit will gain admission. It is therefore important that you put the competitiveness of your intended school in mind so as to know how many people you will be competing with and the requirements (I mean scores here)
5. Your academic prowess: This is very similar to the above-mentioned point. Same way all fingers are not Equal is
how different our academic prowess are. Do you have what it takes to secure admission in your school of choice with that course? Would you like to change to a less competitive school or less competitive course?. I believe this should also be given priority.
6. Catchment area of the school: Coming sixth is the catchment area because I believe this should really affect your choice of school. While few schools like the university of Ibadan has no catchment area has the whole of Nigeria as her catchment area, some schools give preference to people who are from the states they are situated or people in the geographical region the school is situated. For example, Obafemi Awolowo university gives preference to people from Southwest geographical region most importantly, people from Osun state. You should try find out the catchment area of any school you have in mind before making them your choice.
7. Right Subject combination: Each course has a specific subject combination, most medical courses require that Students take English, biology, chemistry and physics in their Utme examination and also have a credit pass in those subjects including mathematics in O level result. Also, most engineering courses require that prospective students seat for English, mathematics, physics and chemistry in their Utme and have a credit pass in those subjects too. However, given the turn of events that different schools have slightly different requirements, it is very important that you put that into consideration.
8. The number of courses your subject combination suits: while a subject combination like English, biology, chemistry and physics in jamb opens you to a lot of courses like Medicine and surgery, veterinary medicine, dentistry, physiotherapy, microbiology, botany, zoology, agriculture, et cetera, some other subject combinations does not allow that wide range of available courses. I also advise that you put this into consideration in case you would have to change your course.
9. If your school and course allows double sitting (if you plan using): it’s not bad that you have intentions of combining results but please be sure that your school and course allows combination of results. For example, The University of Ibadan does not allow double sitting for all courses under college of medicine and faculty of pharmacy. It is important to take note of that as students who combine results would be disqualified during clearance and have their admission withdrawn.
I’m Aweda Bolaji, I wish you the best as you prepare for this very important examination. Cheers to the success ahead!