The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, on Friday, rejected the Core Curriculum Minimum Academic Standards prepared by the National Universities Commission, NUC.
According to the union, it is a threat to quality university education and eroded powers of the university Senate in Nigerian universities.
In the statement signed by the national president, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, ASUU stated that NUC’s pre-packaged 70 per cent CCMAS contents being imposed on the Nigerian University System is puzzling.
ASUU stressed that university Senates, who are statutorily responsible for academic programme development, were left with only 30 per cent, adding that there were concerns on the numerous shortcomings and gross inadequacies of the CCMAS documents.
“ASUU is not unaware that setting academic standards and assuring quality in the NUS is within the remit of the NUC. Section 10(1) of the Education (National Minimum Standards and Establishment of Institutions) Act, Cap E3, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004, enjoins the NUC to lay down the minimum standards for all universities and other degree awarding institutions in the Federation and conduct the accreditation of their degrees and other academic awards.
“However, the process of generating the standard is as important (if not more important) than what is produced as “minimum standards”.
“In this instance, the NUC has recently, through some hazy procedures, churned out CCMAS documents containing 70% curricular contents in 17 academic fields with little or no input from the universities. The academic disciplines covered are (i) Administration and Management, (ii) Agriculture, (iii) Allied Health Sciences, (iv) Architecture, (v) Arts, (vi) Basic Medical Sciences, (vii) Computing, (viii) Communication and Media Studies, (ix) Education, (x) Engineering and Technology, (xi) Environmental Sciences, (xii) Law, (xiii) Medicine and Dentistry, (xiv) Pharmaceutical Science, (xv) Sciences, (xvi) Social Sciences, and (xvii) Veterinary Medicine,” it read partly.
Furthermore, the statement added that many university administrators who are dissatisfied were shying away from making public comments on CCMAS, while some university Senates did not.
It read, “The CCMAS is a nightmarish model of curriculum reengineering. It is an aberration to the Nigerian University System. The CCMAS documents are flawed both in process and in content. There is no basis for the 70% “untouchable CCMAS,” which cannot stand the test of critical scrutiny of university Senates.”
ASUU however suggested that “NUC should encourage universities, as currently being done by the University of Ibadan, to propose innovations for the review of their programmes. Proposals from across universities should then be sieved and synthesised by more competent expert teams to review the existing BMAS documents and/or create new ones as appropriate.
“The difference here is the bottom-up approach, unlike the top-bottom or take-it-or-leave-it model of the CCMAS.”