Mixed reactions on Thursday trailed the decision of the Taraba State University (TSU) to peg the minimum cut-off mark for admissions into the university at 130.
Most Tarabans decried the reduction in the cut-off point describing it as `too low a requirement for admission’ into the university.
Dr Vincent Gassor, an Educationist, said that the pegging of the cut-off to 130 would encourage laziness and lower the standard of education in the state.
Speaking to some of the residents of the State on their take in the reduction of the mark, most describe university as a joke compare to the old days.
Dr Sa’ad Mohamed, the Director of information Taraba State University said the reason for the reduction of the cut off mark is to accommodate the maximum numbers of students the institution wants.
In his words he said “For people who are saying that our standard is falling, they should first of all go to other universities and see their cut off mark. It may interest you to know that because of the massive failure in JAMB this year, JAMB agreed that university are now free to fixed their cut off mark according to the numbers of candidates who applied.
“And in Taraba state university, we fixed our cut off mark base on the numbers of candidates who applied and those who made the cut off mark. If we set our cut off mark high, our admission spaces cannot be filled, that’s is why will reduce it down to accommodate the total number of candidates we want.
“People scoring 130 deserve to be admitted, so it’s not wrong and it doesn’t mean our standard is dwindling. Take for example, if we have space to admit 5000 students, and 16000 applied, and up to 8000 score above 160, will you still bring it down? But by the time you have 5000 spaces and you realize less than 3000 score above 150, you have to come down to be able to accommodate others citizens. We have mission and vision and we are working in line to that” he said.
Also speaking Musa Danlami a Post graduate student at Federal University Wukari noted that students failed Jamb woefully this year, and sequel to that, the NUC has ordered every University to set their cut-off marks. However, to him, TSU cut-off mark (130) is too poor (less of standard) and discouraging.
Danlami said “The school hasn’t attained any recognizable height, both Nationally and Internationally, and is quick to set a low standard. This is demeaning and shameful to the State. If the school is planning to keep a good reputation, then it’s on the wrong path with this kind of decision.”
Gowon Maimako a civil servants and the chief admin officer Taraba State Geographic Information Systems noted that the reduction will end up producing a graduate that can’t defend their certificate.
“Presently now 50%of Taraba state university students can’t make correct sentences, among the 50%, 25% are about to graduate what are you expecting from half bake students, talk more of reducing jamb point to 130 ‘haba jama’a’ we will end of birthing educated illiterate, I rest my case”.
Finding out from Rimam Chindo a concern citizen he feels the cut off point is a bit low and it puts the institution and state in a bad light. He state that It will only result in the admission of students who might not be adequately prepared and equipped for tertiary education.
Chindo said “The mentality of students just going to tertiary institutions as a measure of their success or because their peers are in school shouldn’t be encouraged with such low cut-off point.
“Certain standards should be maintained, because only in so doing will the educational institution groom young minds who will be best suited and equipped to effect desirable and timely change in the society”.
Speaking to many Taraban as reaction keep trailing on social media, our correspondent spoke to some primary school and secondary school teachers, which they also decried that university is a joke.
The Head Teacher of Ibrahim Kefas Primary School Wukari, Mr Obedience Yerima David noted that
He doesn’t think that when one scored 130 or below 180 means he’s dull. But considering the fact that so many persons failed gave rise to the reduction of the cut off mark.
“Be that as it may, not everyone who scored below 180 is brilliant but then if the school felt the should be admitted. And I don’t think that reduce the quality of graduates in the university”.
Also Njure Daniel a secondary school teachers said this is a dead end for education in Nigeria. According to him this will affect not just the educational sector but also the political organization. He said if out of 400 marks, one can’t score 180 which is not even up to the half then one should be disqualified.
However, some parents, teachers and students in Jalingo the state capital also expressed mixed feelings over the reduction of the cut-off marks for admissions to tertiary institutions.
According to some of them they said they used to think passing the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) reflects candidate intelligence to an extent, but now to secure admission at 130 marks leaves a wrong impression.
In a report by JAMB, 569,395 of the 1.7 million candidates that wrote this year’s UTME scored over 200 marks.