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1.1       Background of the study

The general societal expectations on a university student are high, under normal circumstance; an average undergraduate student should face academic studies with ease.  He should be able to pass his courses without embarking on any form of examination malpractice because of his numerous experiences in public examinations he has passed through before gaining admission.  In Nigeria, university students are expected to be sound academically. They are expected to have sat for the Senior Secondary School Certificate Examinations (SSCE) as an achievement test and pass at the minimum requirement and have also presented themselves for Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) Examination as a selection test and pass at acceptable cut-off point before being offered admission into the University (Salim 2006).

Despite these public examinations that Nigerian undergraduates do go through; academic performance among university students are far below expectations most especially in the last one and half decades. Many students hardly pass all their first year courses, majority of those who successfully do so, have poor grades. Greater percentage of university graduates in Nigeria today fall below Second Class Upper division; the number of spillover students in various departments are on a high increase. The situation is now worse as those who even manage to graduate are not productive in the labor market because they fail to meet the expectation of the employers (Ajaja 2010).

It is obvious that no one is happy with this scenario.  No parent will actually want to send his child to the university to come out with a third class or a pass degree or spend more than the stipulated number of years for his/her course of study. Though this scenario has been going on for some more than a decade, frantic efforts were made in 2005 when the then President of Nigeria, President Obasanjo recommended that further screening be concluded on candidate who sat and score in the university matriculations examination at the approve points usually 180-200 points depending on the university where admission is sought. The then Nigerian President made the recommendation with the hope that the Post-JAMB screening exercise would restore the past glory of tertiary education in the country and would make university education only for those who want it and need it (Ebiri, 2006).

Post-JAMB screening exercise was first organized for the students who were admitted into Nigerian university system in the 2005/2006 academic session. The Post-JAMB screening exercise was faced, and is still faced with numerous oppositions. These came from students, parents, and ward who could not guarantee their admission. JAMB officials were also not happy for they felt Post-JAMB might expose their shortcoming (Ifedili &  ifedili, 2010).



1.2       Statement of the Problem

Despite stringent measures and strategies employed by the Nigerian government to ensure that educational standards are maintained at least at university level, students whom after passing through all these vigorous examinations still performs far below expectations. For instance, in the most recent convocation ceremony i.e 2009 of the Federal University of Technology, Yola, out of 189 students that graduated from School of Technology and Science Education (STSE) only 47 bagged Second Class Upper Division and 1 (one) student with First Class.  This implies that only 25% of the students actually graduated with satisfactory results and will not face challenges of discrimination in the labour market where Second Class Upper division and above is more marketable. This also shows that 75% of the students had academic challenges as undergraduate students. The high rate of poor academic achievement among undergraduate is not unconnected with the channel through which they found themselves into the University System. Ebiri, (2010) observed that using JAMB as a yardstick for admission of students into Nigerian universities has led to intake of poor caliber of candidates who are characterized by high failure rate, increase in examination malpractice, high spillovers and the production of poor quality output that are neither self-reliant nor able to contribute effectively in the world of work.

Ironically, as the demand for University Education now is higher than ever before the quality of students admitted, and graduates produced in Nigerian Universities today is on high decline. With the introduction of Post-JAMB as a means of improving the quality of students admitted into the University system which will also improve the quality of graduates produced, this study therefore grew out of curiosity to find out how Post-JAMB has influenced academic achievement of undergraduates students since its inception in 2005/2006 academic session.

To the best of my knowledge, no study in the literature at my disposal has been carried out to compare the academic achievement between undergraduate students admitted through Post-JAMB scores and JAMB scores in Federal University of technology, Yola. The statement of the problem therefore seeks to evaluate academic status of the product of Post-JAMB and JAMB to ascertain the superiority of one over the other in the quality of students admitted.

1.3       Purpose of the study

The purposed of this research work is to find out the most effective and efficient way of improving the quality of graduate trainee from Nigerian Universities, by offering admission to only qualified candidates who can guarantee the most desired quality of graduates need in Nigeria that can compete favorably with the outside world.

Precisely, this research set to do the following:

  1. Find out if the use of Post-JAMB screening test in screening students for admission into university has enhance the quality of students admitted.
  2. Find out if the use of Post-JAMB screening test in screening students for admission to university has enhanced the quality of graduates.

1.4       Research Questions

The researcher posed three questions as a guide to the study as follows:

  1. Is there any difference in Academic status of students admitted through Post-JAMB scores and those  admitted through JAMB scores
  2. What is the pattern of Academic performance of Students admitted through Post-JAMB and those Admitted through JAMB after their first year of study?

1.5       Hypotheses

Ho:     There is no significant difference in academic achievement between students admitted through Post-JAMB scores and those admitted through JAMB scores.

H1:     Students admitted through Post-JAMB screening have higher academic achievement than students admitted through JAMB scores.

1.6       Significance of the Study

The need for selecting the right candidate for university education in Nigeria cannot be overemphasized, if the right candidates are selected and trained in the universities this will bring about the production of the right human resources who are the major factors of production. Students who are not suitable for university education base on their academic performance can go into technical education where they may excel well. This will bring about proper resource management and reduced waste of resource in training students who are not prepared for university education, whom after university education, tend to became unproductive.

Selection of best students for university education will also make teaching and learning easier as the best student is usually an individual who is focused and disciplined, the university management will find it much easier to manage the disciplined and focused students who always have set goals to achieve. This will go a long way in making the goal of education achieved effectively for economic growth and development in to the various sectors of the nation.

Precisely, the significance of this study is based on:

  1. Providing empirical data on the effectiveness of the decision taken by Federal Government of Nigeria and the University Authority to introduce Post-JAMB as means of sanitizing the University System.
  2. The study will also inform the Federal Government to ascertain if Post-JAMB is the most suitable strategy in restoring the decay in the quality of graduates produced by Nigerian Universities.
  3. Students will be informed of the need for hard work which will earn one a chance into any university for undergraduate studies.

1.7       Scope of the Study

This research work is a case study and it is limited to the Federal University of Technology, Yola. The researcher intend to cover records of  students admitted in 2004/2005 and 2005/2006 academic session into 100 level through JAMB scores and Post-JAMB scores respectively in the six schools of the university

1.8       Assumption of the study

In carrying out this case study, the researcher makes the following assumptions.

i. That the 2005/2006 Post-JAMB test was conducted under strict supervision devoid of cheating and error.

2. That students were selected based on their true performance in the Post JAMB scores

3. That the academic records retrieved from the university authority are true reflection of the academic performance of the respective students.

1.9       Operation Definition of Term

The researcher wishes to give operation meaning of the following words as they are being used in the research work.

(i) Academic status:  The Cumulative Grade Point Average CGPA of a student at the end of each academic session usually produced at the end of the second semester.

(ii) 2004/2005 academic session Students: The last set of students admitted into the Federal University of Technology, Yola through JAMB scores.

(iii) 2005/2006academic session students: The first set of students admitted into the federal university of technology, Yola through Post-JAMB scores

(iv) Post-JAMB screening test: Post-JAMB screening test as used in the context of this research represents any screening exercise conducted by Nigeria’s University for Students who have taken any examination organized by Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB)

(v) Academic Performance: A measure of student’s academic work in terms of CGPA or class of degree.

(vii) University Education: A regular course of study leading to the award of Bachelor Degree from a recognized degree awarding institution.

(viii) JAMB students: Students who were admitted into the Federal University of Technology Yola in 2004/2005 academic session.

(ix) Post-JAMB Students: Students who were admitted into the Federal University of Technology Yola in 2005/2006 academic session in 100 level.


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