NUC disagrees with NBTE over top-up degree programme for polytechnic graduates
For years, there have been calls from stakeholders to end the disparity between higher national diplomas (HND) offered by polytechnics and bachelor degrees offered by universities.
A bill was passed at the ninth national assembly in 2021 to end the dichotomy but it was not signed into law by the last administration.
The NBTE, which regulates technical and vocational education, has unveiled what it describes as a one-year top-up programme which offers a platform for HND holders to level up towards obtaining a bachelor’s degree.
But in a statement on Saturday, the NUC disowned the NBTE scheme.
“Even though agitation continues to grow for the abolition of the dichotomy in Nigeria, there is, at the moment, no law that has removed the dichotomy between a university degree and the HND,” the regulator said.
“The place of technical education, the world over, is unique.
“The university degree awarded by the Nigerian university system or any cognate institution is not the same as the HND awarded by polytechnics in Nigeria.
“In the Nigerian higher education space, the processes, contents and methods required for the acquisition of a university degree are substantially different from those needed for HND programmes.”
At the post-graduate level, the requirements for admission into any master’s degree programme for HND holders are, among others, the acquisition of a relevant postgraduate diploma (PGD) from a recognised university.
NUC said beneficiaries of the NBTE’s top-up programme will be subjected to these admission requirements, should they desire to further their studies in the Nigerian university system.
“The unsuspecting general public and all relevant ministries, departments, and agencies should note that the NUC is not a party to and, indeed, disavows the so-called top-up scheme, being concocted by the NBTE,” the commission said.
“In light of the above, the advice of the NUC is that the NBTE should focus on its core mandate and desist from introducing programmes outside its jurisdiction, and not supported by any law in Nigeria.”