By Felix Khanoba
The National Universities Commission (NUC) says it has unbundled Mass Communication into seven separate degree programmes in the Nigerian University System
The Commission also said that degree programmes in Agriculture, Architecture and Creative Art have also been split into different ones, with the changes expected to take effect from next year.
NUC’s Executive Secretary, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, who made this known to newsmen in Abuja on Monday, said Mass Communication has been unbundled into Media Studies, Public Relation Studies, Cinematography, among others.
He said the present Agriculture degree programme in the universities has been broken into Forestry, Soil Science, Plant Science and others.
Prof. Rasheed, who dismissed news making round in some quarters that the Federal Government has abolished catchment area as part of criteria for admission into Nigerian universities, said peddlers of such information may have misconstrued government’s decision to ensure national spread of students in all federal universities.
The NUC boss lamented the behaviour of some communities that always flood institutions located in their area with their kith and kin, “saying our universities are being dangerously localized”.
On the reports of over 100 fake professors in Nigerian universities, the NUC boss confirmed that there were fake professors in the system but could not attach a specific figure to his claims, saying the number could be more or less than the 100.
Speaking further, the NUC boss revealed that there are about 61,000 lecturers teaching in Nigerian universities while only about 10,000 of them are professors.
Rasheed said institutions like polytechnics, colleges of education, inter-university centre as well as research institutes cannot produce professors as only the University’s Senate has the power to promote academic staff to the professorial position.
He expressed worry over the upsurge of illegal degree-awarding institutions, saying the Commission is compiling a comprehensive list of such illegal universities and working with the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) to ensure that graduates of such institutions and other fake universities from nearby countries are not mobilised for the one-year mandatory service.