Higher Education for All (EFA) in Nigeria: The Promise of Open and Distance Learning (ODL)
The social implication for development of educating all citizens of a country cannot be easily quantified. Education is however, seen as an instrument per excellence by many governments the world over, for social and technological development. This paper discusses the Nigeria Government promise of Education for All (EFA), by the year 2015, following the Dakar Declaration of Education for All in the World Education Summit in Dakar, Senegal in the year 2000. It noted the yawning gap between demand for higher education in Nigeria and the average intake per year using the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board statistics for 2005 to 2009 - a five-year period. It further observed that the conventional universities, with restriction on age of entrants, and the limitations of time, infrastructure and space will not enable Nigeria to meet the target of education for all in 2015. And looking at the advantages and successes of mega universities in other and similar regions of the world, the paper draws the attention of the Nigerian Government to the problem above and suggests the use of Open and Distance Learning as an educational delivery system to reach this lofty goal of Education for All in 2015. It concludes that in doing so, Nigeria will be able to meet that aspect of the Millennial Development Goal (MDG).
Keywords: Education for all, higher education, access, open and distance learning, mega universities.