The Registrar of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Ishaq Oloyede has described how technology had been helping the agency stop what he called dubious admissions into Nigeria’s higher educational institutions.
Mr Oloyede, a professor revealed this while delivering the keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the Association for Innovative Technology Integration in Education (AITIE) conference on Wednesday, 7th August, in Abuja.
Unlike in some years back, every aspect of public interaction with JAMB is technologically driven.
“People don’t need to visit any JAMB office any more to register or do many other things,” he said.
He highlighted the deployment of pin vending by text message for initial registration, electronic payment, the use of Computer-Based Test (CBT) centres, and electronic complaints ticketing systems amongst others.
EduCeleb.com recalls that since 2014, JAMB had gone electronic in the conduct of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) till it totally stopped conducting paper-based tests. That came along with some other technologies in examining and admissions processing.
While speaking at the forum, Oloyede noted that the most revolutionary of such technologically driven initiatives is the Central Admissions Processing System (CAPS), which had helped cut out “fraudulent admissions.”
“Through CAPS, tertiary institutions are able to automate admissions processing. They are only able to admit candidates within their stated criteria.”
“This has helped us detect admissions infractions. Some schools would claim that they don’t accept anything short of a credit pass in English and Mathematics. But you would see them accepting those with a pass in Mathematics for a course like Yoruba.
“We have been able to correct such inconsistencies. If you’re accepting exceptions in certain programmes, don’t say otherwise in the general requirements. If you’re accepting 180 for certain courses don’t publicly claim 200 is your cutoff mark.”
He used the opportunity to reiterate that JAMB does not have control on who gains admissions into a college, polytechnic or university as institutions had always been in charge of that.
Also, it was left to institutions to determine their respective cutoff marks and other criteria, which JAMB was to ensure they abide by.
He noted that the examining body’s use of technology had encountered threats from criminal elements in the Nigerian system and showed how JAMB was also using technology to detect such.
The former University of Ilorin Vice-Chancellor told the audience that JAMB had a way of monitoring activities in all the over 700 CBT centres in the country and he is able to see every action carried out from the registration to exam conduct and admissions processing.
He expressed shock at the extent some people had gone in causing infractions such as multiple registration and impersonation, which were easily detected with the deployment of biometric registration and verification systems.
The insistence on using closed-circuit television (CCTV) across exam venues have also made it catch saboteurs of the system. He recalled that it was through that that a JAMB official was caught collecting bribe just as impersonators were caught red-handed.
The JAMB boss challenged anyone who has any complaints visit its website to lodge such and expect a response within 24 hours.
Speaking on the essence of the six day long conference, AITIE National President, Mudasiru Olalere Yusuf noted that it was learn from working innovations in technology as they had been deployed in education.
“We also want to inspire others to use technology in education,” Mr Yusuf, a professor of information technology added.
He revealed that while the conference lasted, papers were presented on various topics in ICT integration in education.
EduCeleb.com gathered that the AITIE, which has membership mainly from the technology integration units of Nigeria’s tertiary institutions plans to hold monthly webinars subsequently for the cross-fertilisation of ideas in what they do.
The organisation’s head told us that interested members of the public interested were welcomed to engage with it on its platforms.
The AITIE conference ongoing at the FCT College of Education, Zuba is in its third edition. It started on Sunday, 4th August and ends on Friday, 9th August, 2019.