Mass Communication degree may be phased out soon

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L-R Professors Muyiwa Popoola of Ajayi Crowther University, Oyo; Sunny Udeze of Enugu State University of Technology, Enugu; Nnanyelugo Okoro of University of Nigeria, Nsukka; Idowu Sobowale of McPherson University, Seriki-Sotayo, Ajebo; Stella Okunna of Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka; Ralph Akinfeleye of University of Lagos, Yaba, Lagos; Godwin Oboh of Benson Idahosa University, Benin City; Umaru Pate of Bayero University, Kano; and Eserinune McCarty Mojaye of Kwara State University, Malete after the meeting with officials at the NUC

If you have a degree in Mass Communication, or you are currently studying to get this degree, or you have friends who have something to do with this degree in Nigeria, then you should be interested in this story.

It seems the era of having Mass Communication as a degree in Nigeria is nearing an end.

Professors, professionals and practitioners of communication in Nigeria have presented a new communication curricula to National Universities Commission (NUC).

A document containing new curricula for communication studies in Nigerian universities, which seeks to unbundle mass communication as a university course and create seven degree awarding departments to be domiciled under a School/College of Communication in its place, was formally presented to the Executive Secretary of the NUC, Professor Abubakar Rasheed, in Abuja on Tuesday, 5th February 2019.

Proponents of the new curricula who have been working on it for the past two years and who were present to advocate for its acceptance and adoption included professors and senior lecturers from the departments of mass communication/communication studies of numerous universities spread across the six geo-political zones of the country; regulatory agencies such as the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) and Nigerian Press Council (NPC); professional bodies such as the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON), Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR) and Radio, Television and Theartre Arts Workers Union (RATTAWU); practitioners such as the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), print media journalists and the Director of Public Relations of the Nigerian Navy; and international development agencies such as UNESCO, UNICEF and the MacArthur Foundation.

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The Executive Secretary of the Tertiary Education Fund (TETFUND), Professor Suleiman Elias Bogoro was also personally present to support the NUC Executive Secretary and to present a goodwill message at the ceremony.

The seven independent degree-awarding departments which the curricula seek to establish in place of mass communication are: Journalism & Media Studies, Public Relations, Advertising, Broadcasting, Film & Multimedia Studies, Development Communication Studies, and Information & Media Studies. Those who formally presented the curricula on behalf of the communication professors, professionals and practitioners were Professors Umaru Pate (Convener), Idowu Sobowale, Ralph Akinfeleye and Tonnie Iredia.

Receiving the document, the Executive Secretary of the NUC, Prof. Rasheed said a review of the mass communication curriculum was long overdue and promised to expedite action in the process of finalizing and adopting the curricula.

Professor Eserinune McCarty Mojaye of the Department of Mass Communication, Kwara State University was among the notable dignitaries at the ceremony who also included Professors Ralph Akinfeleye, Idowu Sobowale, Umaru Pate, Tonnie Iredia, Stella Okunna, Nnanyelugo Okoro, Sunny Udeze, Muyiwa Popoola, Godwin Oboh, Mr Kingsley Osadolor and a host of others.

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(MASSMEDIANG)

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