The Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN) yesterday said the adoption of the Outcome Based Education (OBE) in the training of a new set of engineers in the country would make them employable globally.
The move, according to the regulatory body is to improve the quality of trained engineers to enable Nigeria to become a major player in global engineering activities like the Washington Accord, which today has only South Africa as the only member from the African country in the 22 member accord.
The Registrar of the COREN, Professor Joseph Odigure, in an address at a regional train-the-trainer workshop for the implementation of the OBE in Benin City, Edo State, which had participants from all the universities in the region, said that the body was disturbed with low quality of trained engineers in Nigeria.
Odigure said: “As a regulator, we felt it is extremely important to develop a curriculum that is market-driven; looking at the pedagogy of the delivery of our curriculum, one of the key aspects is to introduce the OBE in engineering in our universities, polytechnics, and technical colleges.
“OBE engineering education hinges on three basic parameters. One is knowledge, the other one is a skill, the other one is character and without character, we can do nothing. We require the character to drive development. We require the character to know what is required of us.
“In November 2015, COREN applied to become a member of the Federation of Engineering Institutions of Asia and the Pacific (FEIAP) and was accepted at its General Assembly in Perth 2016. Such membership required COREN programmes to implement the Outcome-Based Education curricula. COREN, in 2018, began the process of the application for the Provisional Signatory Status of the Washington Accord (WA) under the International Engineering Alliance (IEA).”
According to him, “based on the foregoing, the council inaugurated a committee to develop the framework for OBE in Nigerian Engineering Programmes with the production of this accreditation manual as part of the terms of reference.
“The new COREN accreditation manual consists of four chapters and 17 annexes to guide engineering programmes in planning, developing, implementing, reviewing the OBE system and its continuous quality improvements. These practices make the COREN accreditation visit an accommodating experience rather than a stressful exercise as considered by some institutions.”
He disclosed that 12 institutions have been targeted in the South-south region, adding that the same training had been held in the North-central and would be replicated in the remaining four regions of the country.
Also in his contribution, one of the resource persons at the training, Professor Baba El-Yakubu, said that there was also a need for the institutions to improve on the quality and standard of personnel who are teaching, and students to be admitted including the standard of facilities to be used for training.