Adult Education in Nigeria: A Discipline in Search of Scope and Direction?

Susan Obasi


Adult education as a field of study is indispensable in national development as its relevance cuts across all sectors. Having suffered much neglect and accorded low priority by governments in the pre and post independence era in Nigeria, the developmental potentials of the discipline was unexplored and it remained marginalized in the curricula of most tertiary institutions. The functional nature of Africans traditional system of education which has inbuilt adult education learning strategies equipped people with knowledge and skills that enabled them live and cope with challenges within their environment. As society became more complex with its increasing socio-economic problems that are currently ravaging most developing nations, more emphasis is still placed on formal system of education with little attention on non-formal education and particularly adult education as a discipline. This discipline that is not popularly subscribed for in our tertiary institutions and that has not yet been adequately utilized in developmental circles has the potentials to significantly help equip people with necessary knowledge and skills to minimize the many socio-economic problems in our society. Be that as it may, the current challenges of globalization, the many socio-economic and political crises bedeviling our nation demands that its scope and curricula be restructured to respond to the changing needs of national development. Based on the above, this paper evaluates the current state of the discipline in Nigeria.

Keywords: key words, Adult education, scope of adult education, adult education curriculum, adult education discipline.

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