By Adebola Daramola
The news caught my attention; ACCA commences online examination in partnership with Summit Consulting Group; the development was a result of feedback from employers and students who preferred flexibility in the timing of ACCA exams currently held twice a year.
ACCA as a global professional accounting body recognized the need to be innovative, in order to stay relevant and competitive among her contemporaries (other professional bodies) and customers- employers and students.
Some few days ago, I found a school in Nigeria established for skilling and re-skilling existing and prospective banking employees, an Innovation Enterprise Institutions (regulated by the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE)).
I was impressed by what I found on ground while I visited; a banking hall, with all the construct of a real retail bank. What a wonderful teaching environment to learn the basics of banking, in addition they have created linkage opportunities with the professional banking institution, firms in the industry and recruiting agencies.
Ever heard of Barcelona Graduate School of Economics (Barcelona GSE), it is a joint venture of four academic institutions ( Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, IAE-CSIC and CREI. The combination of these institutions in forming Barcelona GSE has attracted immeasurable value on the institution and community, Catalan, Spain. Quantifiable value will include the scholarship support and research funding from private institutions, the Catalan state government and Barcelona City council.
From the short cases above, the management of Nigeria Higher Educational Institutions (HEIs), professional bodies inclusive need learn the following;
- There is so much insight from their constituency as an education provider. Engage your customers: employers, students, faculty in developing products
- Foster experiential learning as much as possible above our present pedagogy methods
- Engender support for your products through well coordinated linkages system
- Employ economies of scale; a basic micro economics concept. It will be useful in managing HEIs and professional bodies (not with their proliferation).With several universities in a Nigerian state offering same courses/ discipline, limited faculty and strained resources, economies of scale will help HEIs obtain greater benefits in terms of access to specialized faculty and cost advantage in average cost per unit (In finance, staff development, marketing, technology) leading to a fall as the scale of output increase.
The absence of institutionalized innovation process has left our HEIs rusty. I cannot overemphasize the role of our HEIs in driving the national’s competitiveness through the creation of new knowledge and the use and adaptation of knowledge developed elsewhere.