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JAMB 2016: A failure or a failure?

JAMB 2016: A failure or a failure?

JAMB or in full, the Joint Admission Matriculation Board, is an organizing body for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination, UTME. A yearly examination organized for students who wish to further their education in any Nigerian Tertiary Institution be it a University, Polytechnic or College of Education. It was established in 1978 with the aim of preparing students for admission into Nigerian tertiary institutions.

Over the years, JAMB UTME has employed the PPT- Paper Pencil test which is the conventional way exams are conducted but about a few years back, they introduced the DBT- Dual Based Test which involved the using of computer and an answer sheet and the CBT- Computer Based Test which is purely use of computers.

During the periods of 2013 and 2014, news arose saying JAMB was planning to make the CBT exam compulsory for all. Many thought the country wasn’t ready for such a move while others felt optimistic about it. After the UTME exams of 2013 and 2014 were written, theories arose. These theories were generated by the public who were affected by the “stunt” they claimed JAMB pulled.


The “stunt” they claimed JAMB pulled was that they intentionally made the results of the CBT candidates better than that of those who wrote PPT especially in 2013. I heard of a candidate who actually wrote PPT that year with enough preparation and even had assistance in the examination hall but didn’t have a so nice result when the results were released. The next examination, which was 2014 UTME, he opted for the CBT test with little preparation and passed in flying colours. A general study of the results of those who wrote the CBT exam in 2014 also came out fine while those who wrote the PPT didn’t have so good results because according to the candidates, the CBT examination turned out to be simpler than the PPT.

It was these statistics the public claimed JAMB used to work its way to making the CBT a compulsory mode of examination for who wish to take the UTME examination. By 2015, the CBT had come to stay and was thriving well. The only issue with the general exam of that year was that some students found out they were automatically posted to Universities different from their original choices.

2016 UTME came. It started on Monday 29th Febraury, 2016 and was supposed to end 10 days after but because of the hitches encountered, had to be postponed.

  • The first major problem was insufficient centres. People living in the South Western part of Nigeria found themselves being posted to the South Southern part. I believe JAMB should have the statistics of candidates in the South-West and should have provided enough centres to cater for these candidates.
  • The second major issue was the timing of the exam. Some had their starting time to be 6:00 A.M! What time were the JAMB officials expecting the students to get to the centres? 5:30 A.M?? That seems outrageous and inconsiderate to me.
  • Another issue was the exam coordination. Many students had their computer systems shutting down during the examination period. Due to this some students weren’t able to write their exams smoothly, some had delay and were finishing their exams at 11:00 P.M! Yes, you read that right, 11:00PM! Some even had to have their exams re-scheduled after all the delay.
  • Now, down to the results. Lots of students felt cheated with the scores they got and believed the results weren’t theirs. Some saw unimaginable scores which were beyond what they were expecting.
  • Finally, on the issue of the cutoff mark. It has been months now and the official cut off marks for Universities, Polytechnics and Colleges of Education was just released yesterday with the usual 180 cut-off mark.
  • To top all these, the Federal Government, in conjunction with the Joint Admission Matriculation Board announced the scrapping of POST-UTME!!!! They further expressed their confidence in the UTME examinations conducted by JAMB. One which has never been void of controversies. A lot of people would agree with me that this is a very dangerous move by the Federal Government as admission would soon become based on how well you can pay your way to getting high JAMB scores and probably luck and would result in a lot of expulsions from institutions after the first year due to poor results and also a lot of brilliant brains wasting away at home or on the street.



We really hope the Government can look into the issue and proffer a solution soon enough as all these begs for the question, Is JAMB 2016 a failure or a failure??

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