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Pros and Cons of Studying in Nigerian Private Universities

Pros and cons of studying in Nigerian private universities. Generally speaking, the Nigerian educational sector is apparently still struggling to meet up the world’s best standards. Little wonder why most Nigerians jump at any opportunity to seek education abroad. For those who are not that privileged to do this, they are left with no other option than to make do with the educational quality that our schools can offer.

Moreover, many people who have the resources readily prefer to seek education in private schools even right from primary to tertiary level. Although, the quality of education obtainable in a few Nigerian public universities still edges what can be gotten from some of their private counterparts, yet, many students with the means opt for the pursuit of their various degrees in Nigerian private universities. This then brings us to the main aim of this article; the evaluation of some pros and cons of studying in Nigerian universities.

The Pros

Little or no interruption of the school calendar: This is one of the paramount reasons behind students’ choice of studying in Nigerian private universities. It is not new or strange that Nigerian public tertiary institutions are primarily bedeviled with the challenge of an overextended academic calendar.

Hardly would any semester get completed in most public universities without an initial calendar interruption induced by strikes, protests, or temporary closure of the school. However, students in private universities can always accurately calculate the exact day of their graduation without any fear of school calendar setbacks. This makes studying in private universities more preferable for those who can afford to do so.

The higher opportunity of gaining admission: There is really no denying that gaining admission into Nigerian private universities is a lot easier than that of public universities. This is owed to obvious reasons. The average population of candidates that apply for admission on a yearly basis in the latter is generally higher than the former. Generally, we have more Nigerian students whose parents can not afford tertiary education costs in private schools and are left to compete with thousands of their mates in securing admission to public universities.

Thereby, making the process tougher and more competitive, particularly in reputable ones that uphold respect for merits as far as admission is concerned. The situation is worse in public schools that do not uphold merits. Candidates have to maneuver their ways into the limited admission list by hook or by crook. This is quite unlike most private varsities where all a candidate needs to do is to meet a ‘relatively low’ cut-off mark and pay the required admission fees.

Safer learning Experience: Without any doubt, most students in Nigerian private universities find their learning environment very safe when compared to public universities. They hardly experience any security threats from cultists, miscreants on campus, or any other form of threat from lecturers as this is highly frowned at in their schools. Although, there may be very few private schools that are bad exceptions to this.

However, and as a matter of fact, private universities owned by different religious bodies always prioritize the preaching and the inculcation of good and godly morals into their students. Hence, eliminating room for vices within the school environment and making it very conducive for productive learning.

Better learning condition: Statistically, private university students enjoy the presence of more learning facilities as well as technological infrastructures better than their counterparts in public varsities. The simple reasons for this aren’t far-fetched. Owing to the costly fees private school students pay, it is only reasonable that their schools adequately provide necessary facilities. Scarcely would one get to any standard private university and find their students struggling for where to sit in classrooms due to limited space. Likewise, accommodation facilities are always inadequate supply than one would find in public schools.

This makes learning conditions better and more effective. In fact, the latest 2021 ranking of universities in Nigeria by the Nigerian University Commission shows that there are some private universities that outshine lots of public universities in terms of educational standards and learning facilities. More importantly, private schools use this to project positive images and make studying in their institutions desirable for students.

Healthy student-lecturer relationship: Unlike many public universities, private schools are notable for the existence of a healthy relationship between lecturers and students. For instance, lecturers are strongly prohibited from any act that can be considered a threat to students. Personally haven’t ever heard of any case where private university lecturers were accused of sexual harassment or the coercion of students into buying hand-outs. Attitudes like this are frowned at in their entirety by the school management as stiff sanctions have been put in place to discourage such practice.

However in public universities, be it federal or state-owned ones, cases like this are not strange as their students experience them often. Some of the incidences that quickly come to mind were those sexual harassment charges levied against some identified Nigerian public university lecturers which got to the media and went viral some time ago.

The Cons

Students could be at the risk of getting substandard university education quality: With the recent proliferation of private universities in Nigeria and the continuous application for new licenses to establish more, there is a huge possibility of permitting the establishment of ‘mushroom’ private varsities if adequate measures are not strictly followed.

Moreover, one can accurately tell that the central motive of most private university owners in Nigeria is profit-making. Many of them sacrifice the standard quality that university education ought to offer on the altar of profiteering. This explains why some people refer to some Nigerian private universities as ‘glorified secondary schools. Without any doubt, students who go through this kind of system would be merely churned out as ‘half-baked’ graduates, possessing no competitive edge over their colleagues from other universities.

Existence of too many restrictive regulations: In many private tertiary institutions, particularly the faith-based varsities, there exist lots of highly restrictive rules and regulations. Some of these rules are based on religious beliefs and practices, students are therefore obliged to respect them. Some of these rules include specific modes of dressing, hairstyles, haircuts, how to relate with the opposite sex, and a host of others. While the good intentions behind these rules are to inculcate good morals into the students, unfortunately, many of these students only see them as being unnecessarily too restrictive and feel ‘caged’ while on campus.

Many of them are always eager to enjoy their freedom when they are no longer within the four walls of their school. They go ahead to experiment with different dressing modes and other behavior which they were prohibited from while in school. The restrictions they were forced to comply with within school then becomes counter-productive.

Expensive Fees: This is considered one of the most frightening reasons why Nigerian students don’t bother to seek admission to private universities. Private university education is obviously not for the poor. Many students have been forced to drop out of private varsities due to their inability to cope with its relatively huge fees and other financial demands. Although this also happens in public universities, its level of occurrence in private ones is just higher.

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