NBTE Gives Fresh Update On Upgrade Of HND Holders To Bsc
The National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) has introduced a Higher National Diploma (HND) to bachelor’s degree Top Up program aimed at enhancing the career and academic progression of HND holders, according to Prof. Idris Bugaje, the Executive Secretary of the Board.
Bugaje highlighted the importance of this initiative in alleviating the challenges faced by HND holders in the country.
The Top Up program, announced on August 14, allows HND holders to convert their certificates into bachelor’s degrees through a one-year program.
Bugaje noted that HND holders have faced obstacles for many years and that efforts to eliminate the disparities between HND and bachelor’s degrees have not succeeded.
He stressed the need for HND holders to progress academically and pursue advanced degrees like master’s and PhD.
Bugaje explained that while HND holders in countries like Portugal and South Africa can pursue master’s degrees, Nigerian HND holders have faced limitations.
To address this, the NBTE proposed a two-year master’s degree program for HND holders, to be conducted in polytechnics. However, this proposal encountered challenges and was not approved by the National Universities Commission.
As an alternative route for HND holders, the Top Up program offers the opportunity to obtain a B.Sc. in addition to their HND and subsequently enroll in a one-year master’s program and pursue a PhD.
The program involves a credit mapping process that matches the content of accredited HND programs in Nigeria with the corresponding university content abroad.
Bugaje emphasized that the program’s goal is to ensure that HND holders progress and do not stagnate in their careers.
The initiative includes partnerships with recognized and accredited foreign universities in Europe, Asia, and North America. Bugaje expressed optimism that the success of this initiative could encourage Nigerian universities to participate as well.
The program aims to provide quality education to participants at a lower cost, approximately 10% of what they would have paid for full-time enrollment.
Bugaje hopes that the program will change the negative perceptions of HND holders and contribute to the development of Nigeria by addressing the biases against them in the education system.