Education Project Topics

A Critical Evaluation of the Effect of Unemployment Rate on Educational Enrollment of Nigeria Youth




Background of the study

The number of students enrolled in tertiary education is an indicator of a country’s future potential for its skilled labour force. However, the situation in Nigeria is quite different, as the country’s unemployment rate has risen and the number of students enrolled has decreased.Especially in the Eastern part of Nigeria. Total student enrolment is defined as the number of students, regardless of age, enrolled in all types of tertiary educational institutions in the country, including public, private and all other institutions providing organised tertiary level of educational programmes.

As history would have it, Nigeria as a nation has experienced several forms of economic, political and social unrest. In recent times, unemployment which is caused by individuals and government forces has joined the list of the social evils we experience in Nigeria today. The issue of unemployment has become a world-wide phenomenon demanding increased attention, though the impact is more devastating in developing nations (Wamukonya, 2003) as quoted in Akintoye (2008). According to the National Bureau of Statistics (2012), Nigeria’s rate of unemployment stands at 19.7%. In fact, Anyadike, Emeh and Ukah (2012); George and Oseni (2012); Ezie (2012) and Ede, Ndubisi, and Nwankwo (2013), identify unemployment as one of the major challenges confronting Nigeria-economic development. The menace of unemployment in Nigeria both now and in the recent past has been an issue of great concern to economists, policy makers, economic managers, individuals, the government and many others (Bello, 2003). This earliest thinking on economic issues did not fail to give a central point of reflection on the undesirability of unemployment (Njoku and Ihugba, 2011). Unemployment has been defined as a situation where people who are willing and capable of working are unable to find suitable paid employment (Fajana, 2000). The same writer went further to say that, the higher the rate of unemployment in an economy, the higher the level of poverty and associated welfare challenges. However, the number of people in any country is divided into two groups; the economically active and the economically inactive. According to Njoku and Ihugba (2011), the economically active group (Labour force) are the group that are willing and able to work, including those actively engaged in the production of goods and services (employed) and those who are not employed. On the other hand, the economically inactive group refers to neither people who are not looking for jobs nor those who are not capable enough as a result of health related issues. To further buttress this, the International Labour Organisation (ILO, 2005) cited in Adebayo and Ogunrinola (2006) defined the unemployed as numbers of the economically active population who are without work but available and seeking for work, including people who have lost their job and those who have voluntarily left work (World Bank, 1998). The menace of unemployment is geometrically increasing and the effects falls heavily on the economic development of this nation (Nigeria). To address this situation, this study is poised to evaluate the causes, effects and possibly, proffer the way forward in tackling the problems of unemployment in Nigeria.

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Statement of research problem

The level of unemployment rate in Nigeria has grown large that it cannot be addressed by mere campaign or words of mouth. It requires the combined efforts of both individuals and the government of the country.It is obvious that unemployment especially that of graduates impedes Nigeria’s progress in several ways.this is the reason why many youth the country prefer to go into business than going for tertiary education and as such the slogan “school na scam”, therefore the research seeks to critically evaluate the effect of unemployment rate on educational enrolment of Nigerian youth

 Objectives of the study

The primary objective of this study is to:


1.        Evaluate the influence of unemployment rate on Nigerian youths and how it has affected their enrolment into tertiary institution.

2.        Identify if the increasing rate of unemployment in Nigeria has affected the mind set of youth towards education.

3.        Identify how unemployment rate in the country can be reduced.

 Research questions

The following questions guide this study:

1.        Does unemployment rate  have  influence  on Nigerian youth?

2.        How has the increasing rate of unemployment affected the mind set of youth towards education?

3.        What are the possible ways that could be put forward in reducing unemployment rate in Nigeria?

Significance of the study

The significance of this study cannot be underestimated as:

l  This study will lay emphasis on the critical evaluation of the effect of unemployment rate on educational enrolment of Nigerian youth.

l  The findings of this research work will undoubtedly provide the much needed information to government  organizations,  ministry of education, and academia.

 Scope of the study

This study intends to critically evaluate the effect of unemployment rate on educational enrolment of Nigerian youth.  Therefore, the Eastern part of the country where they value the apprenticeship system will be used as a case study

Limitations of the study

This study was constrained by a number of factors which are as follows:

just like any other research, ranging from unavailability of needed accurate materials on the topic under study, inability to get data.

Financial constraint , was faced by  the researcher ,in getting relevant materials  and  in printing and collation of questionnaires

Time factor: time factor pose another constraint since having to shuttle between writing of the research and also engaging in other academic work making it uneasy

Operational definition of term

Unemployment:  this is a term referring to individuals who are employable and actively seeking a job but are unable to find a job.

Education: this is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of skills , values, morals and belief.

Enrolment: this is the act of enrolling at an institution or a course.



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