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General News of Monday, 1 August 2022

Source: www.dailypost.ng

JAMB 2022: Mixed reactions trail low UTME cut-off marks in South-South

Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB)

University lecturers in the South-South have received with mixed feelings, the recent lowering of cut-off marks for admission into tertiary institutions by the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB).


While a majority of them have described the new JAMB decision as counterproductive and dangerous, others see it as a welcome development and inclusive.

The university teachers expressed their feelings on the new Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) benchmark in a survey conducted in the zone.

Some said that if JAMB continued on the trajectory of lowering the cut-off marks the country’s standard of education would continue to be eroded.

The JAMB Registrar, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede on July 21 announced 140 as the new cut-off marks for universities, 120 for polytechnics and 100 for colleges of education.

Prof. Monday Omoregie of the University of Benin described the lowering of the cut-off mark for university admission to 140 as ridiculous and a signal of the decline in the quality of education in the country.

He said reducing the minimum score from 200 to 180 and now to 140 by stakeholders, particularly JAMB, was counter-productive and not a welcome development.

No society grows beyond its level of education and the reduction is an indication that the system is going down.

“The cut-off mark is usually based on the level of success. So to come from down 200 to 180 to 140 is not t good at all.

“What a union like the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has been crying for is that government should invest massively in education in our country.

“There can be no substitute for that. That is how I look at it,” he said.

For Prof. Monday Igbafen of the Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, universities should be allowed to set their own cut-off marks without JAMB usurping the functions of the university Senate.

The former ASUU chairman in the university said: “I think we are going to that side now that JAMB cannot insist on what should be the cut-off mark for various universities.

“It should allow universities not even through the UTME, but their own internal examinations to admit qualified students into their systems.

“The way it is now, some of us are not surprised that JAMB is somersaulting on daily basis. There is nothing that can come out of a system that does not have regard for merit.”

According to him, the new minimum score is a confirmation that JAMB is really out to aid the decline of quality of education in the country.

On his part, a senior lecturer in the University of Calabar, Dr Paul Bukie, said that reducing UTME cut-off marks would continue to lower the academic standard in the country.

Bukie said in Calabar that the reduction was capable of producing more unserious and unprepared candidates seeking admission.

He lamented that lowering the cut-off marks of UTME to 140, 120 and 100 for universities, polytechnics and colleges of education respectively, would make students not see education as competitive.

The former ASUU chairman in the university said: “I think we are going to that side now that JAMB cannot insist on what should be the cut-off mark for various universities.

“It should allow universities not even through the UTME, but their own internal examinations to admit qualified students into their systems.

“The way it is now, some of us are not surprised that JAMB is somersaulting on daily basis. There is nothing that can come out of a system that does not have regard for merit.”

According to him, the new minimum score is a confirmation that JAMB is really out to aid the decline of quality of education in the country.

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