The federal government has lamented the dominance of foreign publications in higher education in Nigeria even as 10 new textbooks sponsored by the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) were unveiled on Tuesday.
Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu, speaking at the public presentation of the books in Abuja, described as worrying the poor quality of academic publications in Nigeria, leading to reliance on foreign books, especially at tertiary level Education.
Adamu who was represented by the Minister of State for Education, Rt. Hon. Goodluck Opiah added that reliance on foreign academic publications portends grave danger to the country’s education sector, adding that strengthening indigenous authorship would solve the problem.
He said, “The scarcity of locally written and produced graduate textbooks and related scholarly publications in tertiary institutions across the country has been a known fact over time.
“Nigeria’s tertiary institutions have become dependent on books published outside the country with the attendant consequences of pressure on the demand for foreign currency.
“It is equally worrying that the quality of most academic publications in our country leaves much to be desired. It is therefore expected that the development of the culture of quality authorship and indigenous book production will not only ensure the availability of relevant books in the diverse subject. areas that take into account our local environment and sensitivities, but will also preserve national pride and reduce the demand for foreign exchange,” he said.
While commending the TETFund for establishing the Higher Education Textbook Development Project to address the shortage of tertiary level textbooks which has already reached crisis proportions, the Minister hailed the establishment of the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) whose mandate is to work with the agency to ensure that quality books are produced by Nigerian authors.
“TETFund Book Development Fund operates in the three key areas of publishing scholarly books and converting high-quality theses into books, supporting professional association journals, and establishing and sustaining university publishing (APC).
“It should be noted that so far seventy-seven manuscripts have passed rigorous review processes by distinguished scholars and are ready for publication as books. I would like to assure this assembly that about thirty additional books will be presented before the end of this year within the framework of the sponsorship program of the TETFund.
“It will be interesting to note that more than 60% of these books are to be published by Academic Publishing Centers (APCs) established by TETFund,” the minister said.
Also speaking at the event, TETFund Executive Secretary Arc. Sonny Echono, who said he was delighted with the quality of the 10 books, said an additional 30 books sponsored by the Fund would be unveiled before the end of the year, while assuring that the agency was ready to sponsor the production of 50 textbooks in 2023. .
“We have over 66 manuscripts, what we’re unveiling today was published by a single publisher (a printing press), by the time we unveil the other 30 in December, you’re going to see all the authors cut through the three layers of our higher education institutions,” Echono said.
The TETFund boss also revealed that the Fund has provided support to ensure that all academic publishing centers in the country become fully operational.
For his part, TETFund TAG Chairman, Professor Charles Aworh said that 20 TETFund-sponsored textbooks were published in 2014 in different fields with wide acceptance inside and outside the country, adding that three of the 10 new books unveiled today were from doctoral dissertations. .
The highlight of the event, which also attracted authors, academic staff unions and heads of education agencies, among others, was the public presentation of TETFund-sponsored books, which include: 1. Principles of Veterinary Surgery: A Concise Text for Veterinary Students 2. Fundamentals of Chemistry 3. Fundamentals of Public Finance 4.Java for Beginners and Web Design and 5. Programming for Beginners.
Others are 6. The comparative method and civil-military relations; 7. Fluid Mechanics and Hydraulics for Engineers; 8. A guide for the evaluation of teachers’ skills; 9. Financial Deepening and Economic Growth in Nigeria and 10. Teacher Motivators and Effectiveness in Secondary Schools.
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